‘William broke Royal rules with Euros hugs – and it was deliberate,’ says expert

As a well known football fan and as the FA’s president,Prince William attended the UEFA Women's EURO 2022 final last weekwhere he watched England’s Lionesses finally bring football home.

Following the game, which saw the Lionesses beat Germany 2-1, 40 year old William was on hand to praise the players and award them with their winning medals.

But the Duke of Cambridge,who’d previously shown his support for the team, broke royal protocol by offering hugs to congratulate the emotional players as they made their way across the pitch.

And while the sight of a senior royal hugging members of the public is a rare occurrence, one royal expert has claimed that William’s gesture was a deliberate choice.

In an exclusive interview with OK! , former royal butlerGrant Harrold opened up about William’s approachable yet respectable nature.

“Historically, there was a rule with royals that you could look but you couldn’t touch. If you met a royal, you could look at them and if they offered you a handshake, you were to accept it.

“That was a lot to do with the mystique surrounding the family but also for security reasons, too,” he says.

But as hugs become more common and as handshakes become a thing of the past, Grant explains that William’s approach is representative of a more modern monarchy.

“I think William and the other younger royals have realised that they can’t get away with being aloof,” he says.

“The Queen can get away with it because she’s the Queen and she’s from a different era, but the younger royals have been brought up very differently.”

Despite William’s mother, Princess Diana, tragically passing away when he was just 15, Grant says that William’s close relationship with his mother has made gravitating towards physical contact a natural thing to do.

“Diana was a hugger and I think that this physical contact and hugging people has a lot to do with how William was raised,” he explains.

“It won’t feel unnatural to William – if anything, it’d feel more uncomfortable if it was just a strict handshake. As well as this, seeing royals hug makes them relevant and modern.”

Additionally, with William stepping up in his role in recent months, the breaking of royal protocol may be a way of allowing members of the public to see a glimpse of the “real” him.

“As he does more work and gets to grips with his role, he wants people to see the real him which is why we’ve seen a lot more affection recently,” says Grant. “He’s really eased into his role.”

Earlier this week,Prince William again showed off his affectionate side while on a visit to the Commonwealth Games with his daughter Charlotte.

In photos taken from the competition, the father-daughter duo could be seen laughing and joking together and in one instance William was even seen giving his daughter a hug.


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