PLATELL: Every young royal should experience life like Lady Louise

PLATELL’S PEOPLE: Every young royal should experience real life like Lady Louise

Lady Louise is pictured at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham earlier this month

Encountering the smiling teenager working the tills or up to her elbows in compost potting plants, customers would have had no idea she was 16th in line to the throne.

Yet the girl at the garden centre was none other than Lady Louise Windsor, the unassuming daughter of Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex.

Since finishing her A-levels in June, she has been working there for the teenage minimum wage of £6.83 an hour, not just getting her hands dirty, but learning what it’s like to be in the real world, with real people, earning her own money.

How refreshing to see a royal mixing with us ordinary folk. As one person she served said: ‘It’s not every day you buy your begonias off a royal.’

Yes, Louise’s work experience may be temporary, but what a breath of fresh air that she’s not behaving like a pampered princess — did I mention Beatrice and Eugenie? — and is instead doing what any sensible teenager should in her summer holidays.

She’s been encouraged to take the summer job, no doubt, by her down-to-earth parents. Ever since Harry and Megs stomped off, Edward and Sophie have taken on more duties and risen up the royal ladder.

Yet they don’t seek headlines or court controversy. They perform their royal work quietly and without fuss, just as Princess Anne has done for her entire life.

It’s not always been the case, of course. Edward was pilloried for his disastrous It’s a Knockout in the 1980s, while Sophie had to resign from her PR firm in 2001 after she made rude comments about royals and politicians to an undercover reporter.

Lady Louise stands on the Buckingham Palace balcony alongside the Queen three years ago

Yet they redeemed themselves through hard graft and a sense of duty. And now they’re teaching their daughter to do what so many parents wish their teenagers would do: get off their lazy behinds (and smartphones) and get a job.

It’s what we all did in my generation. Aged 15 in Western Australia, I worked weekends and holidays at the local supermarket and was promoted to the checkout, one month winning the ‘fastest check-out chick in the west’ award.

I’d make all young royals spend time working in the real world. What an invaluable experience it would be for them to learn about mucking in.

Louise gives us hope after years of workshy royals.

Cover-up risk for cover girl Bella 

Bella Hadid, supermodel daughter of multi-millionaire property developer Mohamed Hadid and Dutch model Yolanda Hadid, tells GQ magazine of her great sadness at being disconnected from her Palestinian roots after her parents got divorced. However, I suspect that if she’d grown up in Palestine, she wouldn’t be parading around in bikinis for GQ.

Bella Hadid (pictured at a fashion show five years ago) said she has lost touch with her roots

Is Rose right to waltz off?

Is it wise for Strictly champion Rose Ayling-Ellis to leave her day job on EastEnders?

Holding that glitterball trophy can do funny things to a person’s ego, even though the promise of great wealth and endless opportunities after a Strictly triumph turns to dust for so many.

This week, she starred at the launch of the first-ever Barbie doll with hearing aids — which isn’t going to pay the bills for long, even for the adorable Rose.

Rose Ayling-Ellis starred at last week’s launch of the first-ever Barbie dolls with hearing aids

Big game hunt for toy boys

After decades of lusty, middle-aged British women doing a Shirley Valentine and travelling to Gambia to find a hot holiday toyboy, the tiny West African nation wants to discourage the ladies and focus on the country’s wildlife and cultural attractions. Am I missing something?

Isn’t it the wild life that draws the women already?

Westminster wars

Playing the ordinary dad, Rishi regales us with stories of buying his daughters McDonald’s wraps for breakfast, even though they stopped selling them two years ago. Most of us now just want to call a wrap on this increasingly damaging leadership contest, especially with two-thirds of Tories backing Liz Truss.

Just wondering why have we have not yet seen Truss’s hubby Hugh O’Leary. As Margaret Thatcher and Theresa May learned, there’s no hiding place for the PM’s husband, however much they may wish it otherwise.

Boris insisted he never got to eat a slice of his birthday cake. Seeing pictures of his tummy hanging over his swimming trunks in Greece, I’d suggest he’s been making up for lost time with baklava.

Flush out the hosepipe Stasi

Police are being hindered by 999 calls from people reporting their neighbours using hosepipes, even before the ban has been introduced in some areas.

What kind of ninny calls 999 to dob in someone who’s sneakily watering their geraniums at midnight, especially during a national crisis for ambulances and the emergency services? And when did we become such a nation of snitchers?

The answer lies in the Covid lockdowns, which turned millions of ordinarily nice folk into neighbourhood Stasi.

As for that chap who abused me for watering some friends’ garden while they were away, he’s lucky I didn’t hose him down on the spot.

What a giggle we all had reading Ryan Giggs’s love poem: ‘Pulling you was my greatest ever coo [sic] . . . And most of all you believed in me, which makes me feel as **** as a totem pole.’

And his ex Kate Greville’s ode: ‘Every day you do me proud not just because you’re well endowed.’ Reminds me of a surfer boyfriend who once wrote me a poem, On The Beach, with the refrain: ‘Mandy oh Mandy I love you when you’re looking so hot and sandy.’ And from another: ‘Our love cannot be restrained by distance, by time. Near or far, it burns it yearns, forever and a day.’

A year later, he left me for a blonde half my age. As any woman knows, a man of words and not deeds is like a garden full of weeds.

Pictures of Catherine Zeta-Jones as Morticia in Netflix’s remake of The Addams Family reminded me of my own Addams drama in the school play. Mum made me a Morticia dress only to discover I was playing her hairy Cousin Itt. No need for a costume — they just combed my waist-length hair over my face.

I played hairy Cousin Itt in my school’s theatre production of The Addams Family

 His BBC colleagues are seething after the omnipresent Amol Rajan landed the top job replacing Jeremy Paxman on University Challenge. Not me, I’m delighted — and hoping with his even busier schedule we’ll never have to hear this cringingly metropolitan hipster on Radio 4’s Today programme ever again.

The way to deal with heartbreak, Jane Fonda says, is to ‘put a rubber band around your wrist and when you get really angry or sad, snap it.’ Hmmm, not sure about that.

For most of us a bottle of Chablis will do the trick — and it’s painless, until the next morning.

Having witnessed him being killed off in 23 film and TV roles, we Sean Bean fans watching his new BBC drama Marriage were relieved to see him play husband Ian in this slow-paced show about a middle-aged couple’s dreary lives. Sean clearly wasn’t going to die in this one, except from boredom.

Overcoming his security concerns, Prince Harry announces he’ll be visiting the UK in September with his wife.

Oh, and he apparently has no plans to meet his brother William.

How sad that severed bond between brothers now appears.

Although one imagines Wills and Kate will be throwing a party to celebrate not having to endure one moment with Harry and Megs and their ever-present Netflix crew.

Revealing that 70 of the 100 tattoos now covering most of his body are dedicated to his new wife Nicola Peltz, Brooklyn Beckham says: ‘She always cries when I surprise her with a new one.’ I bet she does — in despair.

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