William takes over Harry’s old army unit and Kate replaces Andrew in major royal reshuffle

William takes over Harry’s old army unit and Kate replaces Andrew in major royal reshuffle

Prince of Wales speaking to Prince William and Prince Harry before leaving Sandhurst Royal Military Academy after The Sovereign's Parade that marked the completion of Prince Harry's Officer training.

Sam Montgomery

By Sam Montgomery

Published: 11/08/2023

- 08:49

Reshuffle sees Andrew stripped and Harry spurned as Prince and Princess of Wales assume more responsibility

In a major royal reshuffle of military appointments, Prince William has been bequeathed the title of Colonel-in-Chief of The Army Air Corps by his father, while Princess Kate has been granted three new roles.

The Prince and Princess of Wales assume increasing responsibility at the expense of Prince Andrew and Prince Harry.

The Duke of Sussex might have once been lined up for the ceremonial top job of The Army Air Corps, given that he served as a 662 Squadron Apache helicopter pilot in Afghanistan.

However, Harry’s decision to step back from the Royal Family led to him being stripped of his honorary military appointments and ruled him out of further incorporation.

Prince William at the Trooping the Colour, the Queen's annual birthday parade, on Horse Guards Parade, London.


Joe Little, managing editor of Majesty magazine, told the Mirror: “Had Harry still been around he might well have had more appointments going his way.”

Meanwhile, the title of Commodore-in-Chief of the Fleet Air Arm, which had been wrenched from Prince Andrew after the Virginia Roberts scandal, has been given to Kate.

Another of the Duke of York’s former titles, Colonel-in-Chief of The Royal Irish Regiment, has fallen to Sophie, Duchess of Edinburgh.

Prince William, who qualified as an RAF search and rescue pilot and served in the RAF’s 202 Squadron, has also become the Royal Honorary Air Commodore at RAF Valley in Wales.

Prince William and Harry during a photocall at their military helicopter training course base at RAF Shawbury, Shrewsbury.


The Prince of Wales previously spent three years at the base on Anglesey and took part in 156 search and rescue missions, saving 149 people.

RAF Valley has since been reduced to a training facility after search and rescue operations were privatised in 2016.

Princess Kate, who has family connections to the RAF, has assumed the position of Royal Honorary Air Commodore at RAF Coningsby.

The position had previously been held by her husband for 15 years.

Kate’s paternal grandfather, Captain Peter Middleton, served as a fighter pilot during the Second World War.

Prince Harry (left) and Prince Andrew on the balcony of Buckingham Palace before watching a Lancaster bomber from the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight drop one million poppies over The Mall.


Captain Middleton passed away at the age of 90 just days before William and Kate announced their engagement in 2010.

In the 1960s, Captain Middleton was the Duke of Edinburgh’s co-pilot on flights across South America during a royal tour.

Kate has also taken over from her father in law as Colonel-in-Chief of the Queen's Dragoon Guards (QDG), known as the Welsh Cavalry.

The Princess of Wales will be taking the reins at a contentious time for the QDG, as a married senior officer was last month accused of engaging in sexual relations with two female guests at the regiment’s summer ball.

Major Duncan Wiggins is now staring down the barrel of dismissal from the army.

Prince William and Princess Kate attend the inaugural Commissioning Parade for service personnel from across the Caribbean who have recently completed the Caribbean Military Academy's Officer Training Programme, in Kingston, Jamaica, on day six of their tour of the Caribbean on behalf of the Queen to mark her Platinum Jubilee.


King Charles has assumed responsibility for eight of his late mothers roles.

These include being sponsor of the Royal Navy's warship HMS Queen Elizabeth, Colonel-in-Chief of The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards, The Royal Tank Regiment and The Royal Regiment of Scotland; Captain General of both The Royal Artillery and The Honourable Artillery Company; Royal Honorary Air Commodore of RAF Marham and Air Commodore-in-Chief of RAF Regiment.

Queen Camilla has become patron of The Royal Army Chaplains' Department, a position previously held by Queen Elizabeth.

The Duke of Edinburgh has followed in his father Prince Philip's footsteps to become Colonel-in-Chief of The Queen's Royal Hussars, which has been left vacant since the duke passed away in 2021.


Prince Harry 'could be deported' from US by Republican president amid visa application fury

Prince William voted most likely leader to unite US as he tops new poll

King Charles will allow Meghan Markle to keep Sussex title even if Duchess runs for US President

King Charles, then Prince of Wales, wearing a Canadian Army uniform at the Military Muster in Fort York in Toronto Canada, on the third day of a four day Diamond Jubilee tour of the north American country.


Prince Edward has also been appointed as Colonel-in-Chief of The Royal Dragoon Guards.

His wife Sophie has taken on the posts of Royal Colonel of The Queen's Own Yeomanry and Colonel-in-Chief of The Royal Irish Regiment, both previously held by the King.

The Princess Royal has been appointed Deputy Colonel-in-Chief of the Royal Regiment of Scotland by the King.

The late Queen's cousin, the Duke of Gloucester, becomes Air Commodore-in-Chief of the Royal Auxiliary Air Force, and the Duchess of Gloucester is Colonel-in-Chief of the Adjutant General's Corps, which were both held by Elizabeth II.

Buckingham Palace said: “Following His Majesty's accession, the King is pleased to announce further military appointments for working members of the royal family.

“The new appointments will continue to reflect the close relationship between the armed forces and the royal family in His Majesty's reign.”

You may like