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-   -   Prince William of Gloucester (1941-1972) (https://www.theroyalforums.com/forums/f165/prince-william-of-gloucester-1941-1972-a-11354.html)

MaiaMia_53 05-26-2017 04:46 PM

Regarding the documentary on William of Gloucester from five years ago, my reaction when I saw it about a year ago was, Wow! I began to be able to put missing pieces of the puzzle together surrounding the royal family and how they were so affected by Edward VIII's abdication. How that episode ended up affecting the happiness of other members of the royal family, including Princess Margaret and Prince William of Gloucester.

Seriously, the documentary reveals that Princess Margaret was sent to Japan with the directive to persuade William to give up his divorced, older Jewish Hungarian girlfriend!? William was so far removed from the throne. What actual difference would it have made had he married Starkloff?! None as it turns out.

Some of the comments in this thread are apparently being seen through the lens of the current day, without understanding that during the 1960s and early 1970s, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor were still alive (the Duke died in May 1972, and Prince William would tragically die several months later after having the love of his life being met with disapproval by the royals). The blot of the abdication scandal on the royal family was still very much within conscious memory in the 1960s and 1970s as something to avoid at all costs. I don't feel that it was the Queen as much as it was courtiers, advisers, older royals, and old male members of the British government who thought any hint of a royal marrying a divorced older woman who was not British might bring up the verboten scandal and affect how the royals were viewed. Remember that the abdication crisis was seen as something that threatened the continued existence of the British royals. It was and remained for quite awhile, a very big deal.

Queen Elizabeth was so young in the 1950s and thus she adhered to the wishes of the older male advisers in the government. At the same time, she surely wished her sister to be happy and if the decision had been Elizabeth's alone, she likely would have granted Margaret the right to marry. Most likely too, if King George VI had not died, he eventually might have given in to Margaret, especially since his spoiling her rotten is one reason why Margaret was so impulsive and strong-willed.

It was cruel for whoever did so to suggest that Margaret be the one to initially pressure Prince William to give up the love of his life, after Margaret had to do the same some 20 years or so earlier. In fact it seems to me that the tragic death of Prince William in 1972 shook the emotions of the royals to the rafters, and that's one reason why we hear so very little about this remarkable and very handsome young man. He seems so delightful and down-to-earth. In the documentary he said, "I just want to be treated perfectly naturally." Like a normal human being, but alas he died too soon to be able to marry the woman he loved. Perhaps a few years later, some hidebound strictures would have loosened? Or, was it in fact William's tragic death and Margaret's descent into careless and flagrant misbehavior (likely brought on by depression) that finally began to loosen the bonds of antiquated attitudes? It was after all, the news stories that broke about Margaret's reckless affair with Roddy Llewellyn, that led to the Queen agreeing to a divorce between Lord Snowden and Princess Margaret in 1977, only five years after Prince William's premature death.

Princess Margaret's marriage was already on the rocks in the late 60s and early 70s. After 1972, her life seemed to deteriorate further with drinking and becoming carelessly involved with the much younger Llewellyn at her villa on the island of Mustique. It was as if Margaret was spiraling out of control emotionally, especially in the wake of Prince William's tragic death.

From all accounts, Prince William had been despondent on being advised not to marry Zsuzsi Starkloff. Even though it's said that he made the decision to break-up, heavy emotional pressure had been placed on him to do his 'royal duty' (whatever that was supposed to be)! I believe it's true that William remained unhappy and depressed after the break-up. The fact that William wrote to Zsuzsi asking her to accompany him on the plane ride after he hadn't spoken to her in months, I find rather suspect. It sends chills up my spine. Mechanical failure, inattention at a critical moment due to emotional despondency, or possibly a desire not to continue living if he couldn't be with the person he loved? Well, it's hard to know, since there really was no way the investigators could determine for certain what caused the crash. Why would William have asked Zsuzsi to accompany him on the plane ride? I think it's fortunate that she did not, even though she considered doing so. If she had died with William, we would never have known the important details about their love story and their happiness together that have finally come out all these many years later.

I do not believe the reference by a poster earlier in this thread that Prince William of Gloucester was gay. I find that laughable. Clearly, he was not. It has been said that William preferred older women because he found younger women to be rather giddy and more interested in him being a prince rather than in him being the very fine and intelligent human being he obviously was. William of Gloucester's death was an enormous loss to the British royal family, from which IMO, they never recovered. They just buried him, never talked about him again and moved on with the requisite stiff upper lips. The why that the royals never talk about William has remained a mystery IMO, until the details provided in the recent documentary shed more light on his life and his intriguing personality.

I don't think there's any doubt that Prince Charles looked up to his older cousin. And I believe it's true that William of Wales was in part named for Prince William of Gloucester (it's a family name of course, and also a way that Charles was likely honoring William of Gloucester's memory). I think the current Prince William (the Duke of Cambridge) is a worthy recipient of being honored with the name that William of Gloucester carried most nobly, gallantly, introspectively, and with genuine modesty and humanity.

hilal 09-23-2017 02:45 PM

How many royal cliches can you fit into a single Channel 4 documentary?
 
https://www.spectator.co.uk/2015/08/...4-documentary/

MaiaMia_53 09-23-2017 10:35 PM

^^ And so what about what this article claims regarding the melodrama and cliches of the documentary!

I seriously doubt that Starkloff is making things up. Plus, of course William was not that close to the throne. And that's the point! It begs the question, Why did members of the royal family force him to give up his hopes to marry Starkloff? Why did they send Princess Margaret to Japan to convince William to tow the royal line? Why? Because the abdication crisis still hung over and haunted the royal family. The Duke of Windsor's death followed a few months later by Prince William of Gloucester's death finally began the slow process of the royals realizing that it might be best not to destroy people's lives over a 30-year-old monarchy crisis. Five years later after Princess Margaret's personal life had spiraled out of control and culminated in a public scandal, the Queen granted Margaret a divorce (unprecedented for the royals). Soon after, Prince Michael was allowed to marry his divorced Catholic girlfriend (who converted to his faith).

So once again, there was no point to the old-fashioned strictures that put so much pressure on Prince William to give up Starkloff.

The article you have linked is just another attempt to sweep what happened under the rug, and to make light of the significance of these revelations, no matter some of the melodramatic phrasings contained in the documentary. Prince William's actual words and Starkloff's poignant memories are most certainly not cliche or melodramatic.

Denville 09-24-2017 04:05 AM

Princess Michael of kent did not "convert to his faith". She agreed to allow her children to be brought up as Anglicans...but P Michael was out of the succession because he was married to a Catholic.
And the queen did not "grant Margaret a divorce". She allowed the divorce to go ahead, but that was because Snowdon was having an affair with Lucy Lindsay Hogg who was pregnant..

CyrilVladisla 12-27-2017 02:41 PM

Prince William went to the printers to see the Queen's Coronation booklet being printed.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O2k6xJ9UWuw

MaiaMia_53 12-27-2017 03:06 PM

:previous: Princess Alice, Duchess of Gloucester along with both Prince Richard and Prince William, apparently. :smile:

Since @Denville's comments/corrections are not about Wm of Gloucester, I will remove my response to the appropriate thread.

Iluvbertie 06-24-2018 09:22 PM

He didn't want to serve - simple really. No one makes a royal man serve in the armed forces if they don't want to do so - and Richard didn't serve either - so it seems that the Gloucester princes chose a different path for themselves than the 'traditional' path.

Countessmeout 06-24-2018 09:57 PM

For some people, service in the military is just not a good fit. No royal should be expected to serve, male or female, unless they have a desire to. There are other ways to serve their country. Unless if in a country where military service is required for all citizens, that is different.

William chose the diplomat route, that is where he saw his service. Like the Duke of Kent before him, he looked to civil service as his form of service. He spent five years over seas with the foreign office before he had to return home due to his father's illness.

His nephew Alexander chose the military route. The Earl of Ulster is one of the royal men who have seen active service (actually in the front lines, not working in search and rescue, or serving/training in peace times). He served in Kosovo, Northern Ireland and Iraq. He served for 13 years in the Royal Hussars.

CyrilVladisla 08-15-2018 09:18 PM

Prince William in the cockpit of an aircraft during the European gliding competition at Dunstable Downs in 1972.
https://www.gettyimages.com/license/117048357

theroyalfly 08-28-2019 06:34 AM

Today in Royal History is the 47th Death Anniversary of Prince William of Gloucester. He is the eldest son and heir of Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester and Lady Alice Montagu Douglas Scott. He died in an airplane accident at an air show at Halfpenny Green, near Wolverhampton, England.

CyrilVladisla 10-04-2020 02:30 AM

Prince William with his brother in a rowing boat
https://www.gettyimages.com/license/115103080

AC21091968 10-04-2020 06:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by CyrilVladisla (Post 2346499)
Prince William with his brother in a rowing boat
https://www.gettyimages.com/license/115103080

Thank you for sharing. What a lovely photo of Prince William and Prince Richard as children having fun together at their family home :smile:

Both William and Richard resembles their father, Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester.

sophie25 10-04-2020 01:55 PM

Prince Richard must have missed his brother so much over the years.

Prinsara 10-04-2020 02:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AC21091968 (Post 2346518)

Both William and Richard resembles their father, Prince Henry, Duke of Gloucester.

I've always seen William as a carbon copy of his mother Princess Alice, personally. (Very few of the Windsor/Teck genes.)

SLV 10-05-2020 06:23 AM

Given that prince William (D of C) resembles him very much, I think those Winsor-genes are not to be underestimated. :)

hilal 12-17-2020 03:47 PM

Queen Mother | Princess Margaret | Prince William l Royal Premier | Love Story | 1971

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ej1LIbzJzpU

CyrilVladisla 05-13-2021 07:00 PM

Prince William presented the Daily Express air race trophy to winner Captain Bill Bright on June 13, 1971.
https://www.gettyimages.com/license/643926515


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