Prince William ditches royal tradition as 'leveller' gesture

Prince William caught royal fans' attention on Tuesday after abandoning this longstanding custom

Prince William ditches royal tradition as 'leveller' gesture
(Image credit: Gareth Cattermole / Staff / Getty Images)

Prince William abandoned a longstanding royal tradition at a recent engagement, leading to speculation that the Royal Family's relationship with the public is on the cusp of major change. 

Prince William has caught royal fans' attention after flouting tradition at a recent prize-giving event, sparking speculation that the Royal Family is adapting its customs to become more unified with the British people. 

The Duke of Cambridge presented a number of awards at his final investiture ceremony for the year on Tuesday, pinning both OBE and MBE medals onto "individuals that have gone above and beyond to support communities during this incredibly challenging year for the nation." 

The prestigious event took place in the Waterloo Chamber at Windsor Castle and featured all the bells and whistles one has come to expect from a royal ceremony, with the Duke decked out in his gold-trimmed uniform and the National Anthem playing delicately in the background. 

However, it looks like there was one longstanding custom that the future King decided to ignore. 

Eagled-eyed fans were quick to notice that Prince William deviated from a royal tradition he has previously observed, by choosing not to stand on a raised platform while presenting the award. Historically, investiture hosts, including the Queen, have delivered the insignia from a step or podium, creating a distinct height difference between the royal and the recipient. 

While one could argue that the elevation helps Her Majesty present the award more comfortably (she's only 5ft 3, after all!), it doesn't have much practical purpose for 6ft 3 tall Prince William. The abandonment of the ritual has led some folks to believe that the Duke is actively trying to break the barriers between the Royal Family and the general public before he ascends the throne. 

"I’ve noticed that they’ve stopped using the podiums during the investiture ceremony, only using the carpets now," one fan commented on the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's Instagram profile. "Ibm [sic] see this as a leveler between the royals and the rest, which is a good thing." 

Prince Charles has also followed suit, snubbing the step during his presentation of an Order of the Companions of Honour to Elton John at Windsor Castle in November. 

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.