EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: Downton star hits out at Prince William after he claimed trophy hunting could be justified in certain circumstances
Downton star Peter Egan has criticised Prince William for claiming that trophy hunting of animals could be justified in certain circumstances.
The prince said in 2016 that commercial hunting could have a positive impact on efforts to save endangered species.
However, Egan tells me at the Ban Trophy Hunting Campaign reception at the Houses of Parliament: ‘Prince William said, ”I wouldn’t do that”, so why does he think it’s OK for other people to do it? You should only advocate things that you’re willing to do yourself.’
Downton star Peter Egan (pictured) has criticised Prince William for claiming that trophy hunting of animals could be justified in certain circumstances
End of an era as the ‘Rent-a-Kents’ close their business
His poise and bearing are truly monarchical — as is the beard which makes him look remarkably like his grandfather, George V.
But there’s never been anything regal about Prince Michael of Kent’s need to pay his own way.
So King Charles will be heartened by the latest development in Prince Michael’s commercial affairs. I can reveal that he and his wife — the statuesque Marie-Christine, formally known as Princess Michael (pictured) — are closing their business, Cantium Services.
It comes less than a year after Prince Michael, 80, a fluent Russian speaker, told undercover reporters posing as gold investors that he could be hired to make ‘confidential’ representations to Vladimir Putin’s regime — for £10,000 a day.
‘I have never had any close connection before with gold and the idea makes me very happy,’ he added. Prince Michael was less happy when it became apparent that he’d been recorded by Channel 4’s Dispatches programme and by a Sunday newspaper.
King Charles will be heartened by the latest development in Prince Michael’s commercial affairs. I can reveal that he and his wife — the statuesque Marie-Christine, formally known as Princess Michael (right) — are closing their business, Cantium Services
His spokesman subsequently issued a statement, explaining that Prince Michael had ‘no special relationship’ with Putin, having last met him in 2003 and having had ‘no contact with him or his office since then’.
Today, the Prince’s spokesman declines to comment on the application at Companies House to ‘strike off’ Cantium. But it would appear to mark the end of an era for the ‘Rent-a-Kents’, as the couple were cruelly known.
The company — Prince Michael owns more than 75 per cent, and he and Princess Michael are the only directors — was founded in 1978, the year they married.
They were always candid about the scope of their money-making ventures, with Princess Michael, 78, declaring that she would ‘go anywhere for a hot meal’ — and seemingly proving the point by attending the opening of a Happy Eater on the A3 near Guildford.
As they say, where there’s smoke, Matt…
Smokers find it easy to chat as they huddle outside venues, and between puffs Matt Smith, the former Doctor Who star who played Prince Philip in The Crown, seemed to enjoy his encounter with an unidentified woman at Madeo restaurant in Hollywood.
Smith, 40, whose ex-girlfriends include Mamma Mia 2 star Lily James, could be seen engrossed in conversation with the brunette before they embraced.
Last month, he was pictured hugging Lily in North London, after she reportedly split up with U.S. rocker Michael Shuman. Smith dated Lily for five years until 2019, blaming their split on ‘hectic’ work schedules.
Matt Smith, 40, whose ex-girlfriends include Mamma Mia 2 star Lily James, could be seen engrossed in conversation with the brunette before they embraced
Last month, he was pictured hugging Lily in North London, after she reportedly split up with U.S. rocker Michael Shuman. Smith dated Lily for five years until 2019, blaming their split on ‘hectic’ work schedules
Neil Morrissey was a little surprised to discover that a number of his ancestors were found to be behaving badly when he filmed a new ITV1 documentary to discover more about his Irish roots.
In DNA Journey, to be aired next week, the Men Behaving Badly and Line Of Duty star, 60, is told by Jennifer Edmond, an assistant professor in Irish history, that the family of his great-great-grandparents, Lawrence and Mary Laughlin, ‘might have been hellraisers’ due to their law breaking in Castlecomer, County Kilkenny, at the start of the 20th century.
‘I was separated from my family for so many years, but now a lot of gaps have been filled in,’ says Morrissey, who was taken into care when he was ten.
Prunella back in the theatre
Due to Prunella Scales’s health issues, it was announced in 2020 that she and her devoted husband, Timothy West, had no choice but to bring her distinguished, 67-year acting career to a close.
But the Fawlty Towers star, 90, is still keen to appear in the West End and, on Tuesday, she and West attended The Unfriend, a comedy at The Criterion theatre.
‘They were friendly with the crowd, stayed to the end and even made it in and out of the stalls unaided,’ a fellow theatre-goer tells me. ‘It really was a pleasing sight.’
Mirren’s latest role… Gran of the red carpet
Oscar-winner Dame Helen Mirren has performed many parts during her illustrious career, but her real-life role of grandmother is the one closest to her heart.
The actress, 77, has no biological children but has enjoyed being a stepmother to the two sons of her husband, the American film director Taylor Hackford. And she took one of her grandchildren, Basil, to the world premiere in LA of Shazam! Fury Of The Gods, holding hands with the little boy on the red carpet.
Dame Helen plays one of the film’s villains, so let’s hope she didn’t give him any nightmares.
Oscar-winner Dame Helen Mirren has performed many parts during her illustrious career, but her real-life role of grandmother is the one closest to her heart
Is University Challenge going woke, too? The BBC quiz is advertising for a new question-setter, who must show ‘recent experience of working with university students and awareness of ongoing cultural conversations regarding representation and access in this context.’
Perhaps new host Amol Rajan could personally test applicants on their political correctness?
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