The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and the Duchess of Cornwall are claimed to have voiced their ‘concern’ about changes which could see several royal protection officers moved on to new positions
Senior royals are reportedly “concerned” with plans that will see their trusted bodyguards moved on to new positions as part of a security shake-up.
Among the royals who are said to have shared their “concern” about the new arrangement are the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Duchess of Cornwall.
Under the new plans, bodyguards who have diligently worked with family members for years will be forced into new roles to make room for new blood, the Daily Mail reports.
Her Majesty has also privately expressed her “disquiet” over the arrangement, reports claim.
The rules are reportedly being rolled out by Met Police Commander Helen Millichap – who runs Protection Command – the royal family’s security squad.
Cmdr Millichap wants to make the ranks of the Royalty and Specialist Protection (RaSP) more open and accessible, it’s said.
But the commander’s plans have “ruffled the feathers” of the Windsor family, who are said to be determined to keep hold of their favourite bodyguards who protect them for 24 hours every day, the Mail claims.
RaSP – the team of specialist officers guarding the monarch and her family – falls under Protection Command which also guards lawmakers.
Yorkshire-born Cmdr Millichap – one of Scotland Yard’s most senior female cops – reportedly wants to shake the unit up to make way for new personal protection officers (PPOs) in the hopes of making the squad less “cliquey”.
She also believes that working as a PPO should not be seen as a job for life, the Mail adds.
A source told the newspaper: “Protection officers occupy very unique positions with MRFs [members of the Royal Family].
“They are with them 24 hours a day and it understandably takes a long time to build up a good relationship of confidence and trust.
“Several very well-liked and respected officers have been moved on from their roles, not through any fault of their own.
“It’s simply because of this desire to shake things up a bit, sometimes for the sake of it, it seems.
“Everyone is unhappy about it, not least some of the principals [royals]. There been a lot of changes in personnel, they have lost people they liked and valued. Some have made clear that they are really quite upset about it.”
Previous royal protection boss, Chief Superintendent Dai Davies, said the Met needs to recognise the “unique relationship” between the PPO and their royal.
Mr Davies said the police and the royals are in a “partnership” which should be “nurtured and maintained”.
He added the bodyguards can only do their job “exceptionally well” because they “develop their expertise” over a long period of time.
“More often than not they are not just a police officer, but they are also politicians and diplomats,” he said.
“Building up these relationships takes trust and time, and that can’t be lightly dismissed.”
It comes after chilling footage showing a man wielding a crossbow and threatening to “assassinate the Queen” emerged after a man broke into the ground of Windsor Castle on Christmas Day.
A 19-year-old man was arrested when security officers reportedly spotted him scaling the perimeter fence and called armed police to the scene shortly after 8.30am.
He was later sectioned under the Mental Health Act.
Now, chilling video footage has emerged showing a man holding a black crossbow and using a distorted voice as he makes threats down the camera.
The pre-recorded message was reportedly sent on Snapchat on Christmas Day – 24 minutes before a man was arrested by police inside the grounds of Windsor Castle.
Buckingham Palace has been contacted for comment.