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Who are the ‘senior royals’?

It has been subject of discussion recently who constitutes a senior member of the Royal Family. We thought we’d take to the blogs to explain who we think is a senior member of the Royal Family, and why.

The Diamond Jubilee introduced us to the 'core seven' members of the Royal Family - but who's a senior royal?

The Diamond Jubilee introduced us to the ‘core seven’ members of the Royal Family – but are all of them senior royals?

A good place to start for defining a senior royal is, ‘any member of the Royal Family who continually carries out duties in their own right and on behalf of the crown’. Whilst this may be true, this would make most members of the Royal Family ‘senior royals’ so there’s more to it than that.

The other way one could define a senior member of the Royal Family is by proximity to the throne. But then, if that’s the case, where’s the cut off point, 4, 5, 10? And that excludes spouses of members of the Royal Family who may constitute high influence, notable figures in the Royal Family.

Then there’s the matter of who does the most work? This system would put The Queen at the top, but then Princess Anne second and then people like the Duke of Kent higher than the Duke of Cambridge, despite their extremely important work for the Royal Family, this system is somewhat flawed from the start as workloads fluctuate in the Royal Family, and it is no measure of someone’s seniority.

It seems there is almost no formally agreed way to define senior members of the Royal Family… until now. After doing a little research into different roles of members of the Royal Family, we think we’ve hit on a definitive way to determine who is a senior member of the Royal Family.

In short, the system is The Monarch, Counsellors of State and their spouses.

Counsellors of State are high-ranking members of the Royal Family who, in the case of Queen Elizabeth’s absence, carry out the function of the Crown together.

Using this system, senior members of the Royal Family are:

  • Her Majesty The Queen
  • The Duke of Edinburgh
  • The Prince of Wales
  • The Duchess of Cornwall
  • The Duke of Cambridge
  • The Duchess of Cambridge
  • Prince Harry
  • The Duke of York

[box style=”rounded” border=”full”]Tell us what you think of this ranking or suggest your own in the comments box below.[/box]

photo credit: Commonwealth Secretariat via photopin cc

  • CC

    What about Edward and Sophie? Don’t they represent the Queen?

  • David

    I think:
    Her Majesty The Queen
    The Duke of Edinburgh
    The Prince of Wales
    The Duchess of Cornwall
    The Duke of Cambridge
    The Duchess of Cambridge
    The Duke of York
    The Princess Royal
    Prince Harry
    The Earl of Wessex
    The Countess of Wessex

  • june jeung

    Her Majesty The Queen

  • Rob Wolvin

    I think ‘senior royals’ refers to those family members who are most likely to have had common shared life experiences with the monarch. I would include parents, aunts, uncles, 1st cousins, children & spouses of all mentioned. Our current Queen’s list of senior royals would only include Her spouse, Her children, Her cousins & their spouses. I would add the Duke of Cambridge & his wife, entirely because our monarch’s reign has been so long and they represent the direct line of succession.

  • cshell10

    The Queen, by 4 different tells in the finale week of the Jubilee Celebration said who the 7 seven Senior Royals are. 1. after the church service at St Pauls she messaged part of her family that they would not be needed the rest of the day and their transportation would take them home. 2. The 6 six, because Philip was sick that day, went to the luncheon and sat at the different tables. 3. At the boat flotilla, there were members of the royal family on each boat, but only 7 on the boat with the Queen. Philip and the Queen, Charles, Camilla, William, Catherine, and Harry. 4. When the Senior Royals appeared on the balcony to watch the flyby, again there were only 6, because Philip was again sick or in the hospital, The Queen, Prince Charles, Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry and Prince Philip makes the 7th one. I believe this is the direct line and spouses, until the new little one arrives, but doubt he/she would be added to the 7 until much older

  • simon

    I would put the Earl and Countess of Wessex right after the Duke of Cambridge, before the Duke of York

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