Sunday, 23 Jun 2024

Prince Charles 'programmed' William and Harry to pick up rubbish

William and the Duke of Sussex thought it was normal to be given spikes and black plastic bags and encouraged to clean up while growing up.

Prince Charles is known for his work on environmental issues such as protecting the rain forests, saving endangered species and combating the threat of climate change.

He has been raising plastic pollution concerns since the early 1970s.

Recalling the memory in a TV documentary marking Charles’s forthcoming 70th birthday, William revealed: “He took us litter picking, when we were younger, on holiday.

“We were in Norfolk on school holidays, and went out litter picking with him… Both of us thought ‘This is perfectly normal, everyone must do it’.

“We’re there with our, basically, spikes, stabbing the rubbish into black plastic bags.”

Harry said he was “programmed” to collect litter because of the positive influence of his father.

“He’s done an amazing job without telling us what we should be doing or what direction we should be going,” he said.

“He’s just let us learn from the nature of the job, learn from him, learn from Mummy, to the point where I used to get the … mickey (taken) out of me at school for just picking up rubbish.”

The comments were made as William and Harry watched a recording of the prince giving a speech in 1970 in which he mentioned the growing throwaway plastic society.

William went on to say that his father was affected by the backlash he received for his environmental views, which saw him ridiculed for supposedly talking to plants.

He said: “He does live the way he advocates so, until someone comes up with an electric plane – it’s impossible to get round the world, for instance, without using a plane that’s there.

“He did take to heart the criticism quite a lot when he was younger.”

:: Prince, Son And Heir: Charles At 70 will be broadcast on Thursday at 9pm on BBC One.

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