Theresa May is set to have her first major dispute with Her Majesty The Queen as the British Prime Minister plans to scrap seven royal charters.
Mrs May is planning to axe royal charters from the UK’s research councils which generates £3billion per year into university laboratory funding, which helps discover some major scientific breakthroughs.
A royal charter is independent from the government and gives scientists the freedom to carry out research of their choice. However, if the charter is removed from the independence of the Crown, there are fears that there will be political interference.
This is likely to anger The Queen when the issue will be raised at one of her weekly audiences with the Prime Minister. It is likely to be Mrs May’s first row with the monarch since taking office in July
Constitutional expert David Rogers has said: “The Queen will hit the roof and it will cause a huge dust-up with the PM.
“This could turn into Mrs May’s first row with Her Majesty since she became PM.
“The Queen is likely to raise it with Mrs May at one of their weekly audiences before she signs it into law.”
The changes have been proposed by Universities minister Jo Johnson, as part of a wider scheme to revamp higher education.
Under his shake-up of the system, Mr Johnson wants the seven royal charters to merge into one body called ‘UK Research and Innovation.’
A spokesperson from the Department for Education said: “UK Research and Innovation will ensure the UK is equipped to carry out more world-class multidisciplinary research.
“All individual research councils will retain their autonomy, with individual funding streams and will continue to have authority on decisions within their discipline.”
Buckingham Palace has declined to comment, saying: “We wouldn’t comment on the Queen’s audiences with the Prime Minister.”