Friday, February 27, 2015

What will Baby Girl Cambridge be called?

I have already written a blog post about what Baby Boy Cambridge will be called, . Apparently William and Kate did not read it, choosing a name I disliked! George! Let's hope, if it is another boy they choose something less old fashioned and heavy sounding.

This time round many are expecting William and Kate to have a girl and there are many bets on what name they will choose. Currently some of the top contenders include: Elizabeth, Victoria and Mary. One site listed Khaleesi as an option, though neither of them strike me as Game of Thrones fans. Here is my list for names and why they may or may not be chosen.


The name of the present Queen and the late Queen Mother. Elizabeth is also a popular middle name. Some royal ladies who have the name include: Princess Anne, Princess Beatrice, Lady Louise Windsor, Zara Tindall, great-granddaughter Isla Phillips, Margarita Armstrong-Jones, Lady Sarah Chatto, Lady Davina Lewis and Princess Alexandra to name a few (Phew!). Other than the present Queen, it is not used as a first name by anyone in the immediate line of succession to the throne, which means it is unlikely that there would be a 'muddle over two Elizabeth's in the family', as was the concern in 1926 when the present Queen was given her mother's name.


Princess Alexandra, Lady Ogilvy, is the only current member of the royal family to use it as a first name, though there are several family members who have it as one of their given names, including the present Queen. It was also the name of the consort of King Edward VII, the beautiful Queen Alexandra. It would be a wonderful way to pay tribute to Princess Alexandra, who also happens to be Prince William's godmother.


At present no member of the royal family uses Mary as a first name. Like Elizabeth and Alexandra, there are members of the family who have it amongst their given names, thus making it a refreshing change. It is also the name of the venerable Queen Mary, consort of King George V.

Sixteen of Queen Victoria's granddaughters had Victoria amongst their given names but only five used it. Victoria continued to be included until the present Queen was born. It still appears as a middle name but no one currently bears Victoria as a first name so like Mary, it would be a refreshing change.


Some are betting on Diana being included but I highly doubt it. While it would be a nice tribute it would be a lot for a little girl to live up to.

The name of Prince Philip's mother and a middle name for Princess Anne, no one in the immediate family uses it as a first name. Thus making it ripe for a revival!


The name Charlotte has a tragic royal history after King George III's only legitimate grandchild, Princess Charlotte of Wales, died in childbirth. Her death started a race to produce an heir amongst the elderly king's middle aged sons. This race resulted in the birth of Queen Victoria.  It is also Pippa Middleton's middle name.

Although I would love to see another Princess Elizabeth in the family, I lean towards William and Kate choosing Victoria or Charlotte. As this second child is unlikely to succeed the throne, William and Kate have more freedom to choose a name. Rumor has it they are Downton Abbey fans. Could there be a Princess Marigold of Cambridge in the future? We will find out in April!

© Marilyn Braun 2015

Thank you for enjoying this article. If you use the information for research purposes, a link to credit the work I've put into writing it would be appreciated.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Review: Reinventing The Royals - Part 1 - Crisis

A few months prior to its release, it was reported that  Buckingham Palace had attempted to prevent the broadcast of Reinventing the Royals, a two part series presented by Stephen Hewlett, about the relationship between the media and the monarchy. As in many cases with 'controversial' books or television specials, the controversy has turned out to be much ado about nothing. (You can watch the first episode at the bottom of this post).

Part One, titled Crisis, begins with the excessive coverage of Diana, Princess of Wales in the early 1990s and how her death resulted in changes to the way the media covers members of the royal family, specifically Prince William and Prince Harry. Several royal correspondents and editors offer their insights, including Penny Junor, Jennie Bond, Robert Jobson, Richard Kay, Arthur Edwards and Sandy Henney (Former press secretary to the Prince of Wales) to name a few. However, in the process of offering only one side, it effectively paints the media during this period at the mercy of Prince Charles and his spin doctors. To quote Richard Kay, "we know we are being used. We are always being used."

In the wake of Diana's death, Prince Charles reputation was at its lowest point and in 1996 he hired a spin doctor, Mark Bolland, then Director of the Press Complaints Commission. Effective in his outcomes but ruthless in his practices, Bolland promoted and revitalized Prince Charles's image at the expense of other members of the royal family and William and Harry's privacy. In a controversial campaign referred to as 'Operation Mrs. PB,' Charles relationship with Camilla Parker Bowles gained gradual acceptance via a series of strategically reported meetings and highly choreographed public appearances.

As Charles and Camilla's relationship gained legitimacy, interest in William and Harry intensified but they were protected by the 'Pressure Cooker Agreement,' negotiated in 1995 at the time William began his education at Eton.  This agreement protected the Princes privacy during their education, placing a ban on media stories about them. In exchange for their cooperation, the press would be granted occasional official access. However, the agreement threatened to deteriorate when the press received stories and photographs they could not use.

In order to satiate the press, Sandy Henney arranged for a photographer and cameraman to have access to Prince William to shoot images and footage for his 18th birthday. These images were meant to be shared with other media outlets, but the photographer involved in the photos, on contract to the Daily Telegraph, ended up giving that newspaper a competitive advantage. Rival newspapers accused Prince Charles' office of favoritism and Sandy Henney lost her job as a result of this arrangement.

Mark Bolland admitted to distorting events surrounding Prince Harry's drug use and later resigned from the Prince of Wales's office. As Bolland's efforts denigrated other members of the royal family, the Queen appointed Sir Michael Peat as the Prince of Wales' new private secretary, creating a new focus for his press office that put the media's relationship with them on more traditional ground.

Predictably, this was not likely to last. Part Two will air on February 26th.

© Marilyn Braun 2015

Thank you for enjoying this article. If you use the information for research purposes, a link to credit the work I've put into writing it would be appreciated.