No Sleepovers for the Prince

No royal yacht?

Some people in England believe that is horrible. Many praise Prince Harry for being thrifty, raising morale and being more relatable.

Prince Harry will live on a tanker ship during most of his Caribbean tour, providing the starkest illustration to date of the need for a new Royal Yacht for some Royal-Watchers.

The Prince, 32, will spend 14 days visiting seven countries on behalf of the Queen, travelling between island nations on the Royal Fleet Auxiliary Wave Knight.

He will spend a total of six nights sleeping on the vessel, which will make voyages of up to 20 hours at a time as it takes him to Commonwealth nations such as Barbados, St Lucia and Grenada.

But the Prince will not be able to invite guests on board – as members of the Royal family used to when staying on the Royal Yacht Britannia – because “the ship is a working naval vessel”, according to a Kensington Palace spokesperson.

The Wave Knight could even be called upon to resume its role in Operation Martillo, an international drug-busting effort across the Caribbean, while Prince Harry is on board.

Earlier this month the vessel intercepted a £40 million cocaine shipment.

Theresa May, the Prime Minister, is resisting calls from 100 of her own backbenchers to pay for a cost benefit analysis for a new privately funded royal yacht now because Britain is leaving the European Union.

The MPs are hoping that a royal yacht to act as a catalyst for a newly independent Britain to win new trade deals. The Daily Telegraph has started a campaign for a return of a modern-day version of Britannia.

Jake Berry MP, who is leading a Parliamentary campaign for a new royal yacht, said: “Prince Harry is doing important work in the Caribbean.

“The fact that the Royal Navy has had to make available a tanker which is in short supply demonstrates that a new royal yacht that is fit for purpose for promoting trade is desperately needed by this country.”

The Prince will fly to Antigua to begin his tour next Sunday, November 20, representing the Queen, who longer undertakes long-haul travel, for the 50th anniversary of Barbados’s independence from the UK, the 50th anniversary of Guyana’s independence and the 35th anniversary of the independence of Antigua and Barbuda.

He will also visit St Kitts and Nevis and St Vincent and the Grenadines.

The Prince will travel with a staff of 10.

Before the Royal Yacht Britannia was decommissioned by the Labour government in 1997, members of the Royal family and their court would stay on board the vessel for the entirety of such tours, and would invite dignitaries on board where billions of pounds’ worth of trade deals were sealed over the years.

The austere surroundings of Wave Knight, however, make such on-board meetings impossible.

The ship, which has a crew of 72, is used for refueling Royal Navy vessels in the area, as well as carrying out counter-narcotics patrols and disaster relief missions.

Earlier this month the ship was involved in a six-hour chase across the Caribbean which culminated in £40 million of cocaine being seized.

A Royal Marines sniper in the back of a Lynx helicopter operating from Wave Knight disabled the drug-runners’ speedboat by firing more than a dozen rounds.

The maritime drug bust was started by a patrol aircraft spotting the speedboat and directing Wave Knight to intercept.

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About Jake Johnson 247 Articles
Jake Johnson is a full-time travel bum, who prefers warm climates where the women wear less clothing. We've tried to teach him things like manners and diplomacy, but we've given up and simply rely on our editors to remove the most offensive bits from his articles. We take no responsibility for his inane ramblings opinions - they are his own.
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