His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge is to hold his first investiture on Thursday at Buckingham Palace on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen, it has been reported.
The Duke, who recently quit the RAF to pursue causes of his own, was confirmed in September to be taking on more duties which does include performing investitures, a duty he will one day perform frequently as King, in addition to other new tasks he will be getting to grips with in what Kensington Palace have termed a ‘transitional year’.
At the investiture ceremony, Prince William will award the insignias to those named in The Queen’s Birthday Honours List earlier this year. They include two knighthoods, for which the Duke has apparently been fervently practising in the last few weeks – learning how to correctly dub the knights with The Queen’s father’s sword.
Prince William will also be awarding the OBE to tennis star Andy Murray when he takes centre stage at the investiture in the Ball Room at Buckingham Palace this Thursday.
He could choose to wear military dress, as some other members of the Royal Family (including the Princess Royal and William’s father, the Prince of Wales) do choose to do sometimes, though he may choose to wear an ordinary suit.
The Duke of Cambridge performing his first investiture is a subtle indication of the way in which duties are being slowly removed from The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh in their older age and transferred to some of the younger members of the Royal Family.
In addition to practicing the correct way to ‘dub’ knights, Prince William will have to further refine his skills in snappy conversation to keep within time, allowing each recipient of an honour 30 seconds talking time – he won’t have to worry about fiddling with the medal’s attachments however because the MBE and OBE are hooked onto a wire pre-placed in the receiver’s jacket to save time.
The CBE onwards comes in the form of a medal worn around the neck for gentlemen but in the form of a bow for ladies to avoid practicality issues with putting it over any elaborate hat the lady may be wearing.
The Duke will not be accompanied to the event by the Duchess of Cambridge as traditionally only one member of the Royal Family is present at investiture ceremonies. Although Her Majesty will be in residence at Buckingham Palace at the time of the investiture, Prince William will be performing his first investiture now, no doubt talking his experience over with his grandmother afterwards.