With any sovereign’s death, there always comes a shuffling of cards in the game of succession.
And in the case of Queen Elizabeth II, the deck has favoured one granddaughter above all others: Princess Beatrice.
The 34-year-old eldest daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson has moved up to ninth in line to the throne.
But with three primary-school-aged children and a pair of toddlers ahead of her, Beatrice slides into a key role as Counsellor of State.
Along with Prince William, Prince Harry, and her father Prince Andrew, the formerly laid-back royal who was seldom called upon for official duties will now be expected to represent the King at a moment’s notice.
But the lone princess and youngest among the group may expect to take on more than her equal share of the load.
Prince Harry, having resigned from his royal duties in 2020, is now pursuing a private life with his wife Meghan and their two children in the United States.
Meanwhile, Prince Andrew has been largely barred from carrying out official royal duties, after settling a civil sexual assault case that also linked him to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
The man once rumoured to be the Queen’s favourite son, in her death has been entrusted with no more than caring for the corgis.
Even before the Queen’s death, royal observers had warned that she must urgently name new counsellors of state to step into her shoes in the event that both Charles and Prince William were unavailable.
And while Queen Consort Camilla…