With the birth of Kate and William’s son yesterday bringing the royal family into the forefront of the media once again, there are many who doubt the positive impact the monarchy has upon Britain in today’s society. They are viewed by some as simply a drain on national resources and an unnecessary part of British heritage that exist only for the sake of tradition. But, that is exactly why the institution of the monarchy can offer a solution to the societal chaos the modern world often creates; they offer national unity, cohesion and stability amidst stimulating economic growth through tourism.
The royal baby, born at 4.24pm yesterday, will be third in line to the throne and has been born in a movement that sees the royal family becoming increasingly popular with the British public. It has been a busy few years for the British royal family, who have re-entered the lives and hearts of millions after a string of high-profile events. The wedding of William and Kate in 2011 resulted in 5,500 applications for royal wedding street parties with 24.5 million people in the United Kingdom watching the broadcast of the wedding on television. The Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II in 2012 saw masses of the country rally to support their monarchy; the Thames pageant was watched by 10.3 million television viewers and the Jubilee Concert by 14.7 million, alongside all of those who watched the events live. These statistics in themselves demonstrate an upsurge in royalist sentiments, yet they also signal a growing belief in tradition and national unity that are vital to the survival of British heritage and community morale.
Whilst the monarchy, under Kate and William, has received a modern update in the form of new and young royal faces, the heart of the institution lies in tradition. Britain is a nation that prides itself on its historical and cultural heritage and this in turn allows for traditional values to be upheld; in a society where moral corrosion is the norm, it is not inconceivable to look to the royal family as role models who echo the days of community spirit and national harmony. In an increasingly globalised world, it is important to look to the past to shape the nation today. The royal family has acted, and will continue to act, as a form of social cement within Britain by promoting togetherness of the British people no matter your creed or colour.
The news of the birth of the Duchess of Cambridge’s son was displayed on an easel outside Buckingham Palace in keeping with tradition, a further demonstration of the royal family’s role in upholding British heritage. David Cameron tweeted that “the whole country will celebrate” the birth of their royal son, a symbolic emblem of national unity and cohesion that will help to uphold the moral foundations of the country in which we live. In a world full of rifts and ridges, where neighbours often struggle to live side-by-side and where apathy is the norm, the birth of William and Kate’s child will ensure that the royal family continues to act as a motivational beacon of solidarity to British citizens by promoting social and national cohesion.