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Is Kate Middleton to be Kate or Catherine – as well as the duchess of something or other?

Well you read it here first but I’m delighted to see that the Daily Mail’s Ephraim Hardcastle, nom de plume for the great diarist Peter McKay, has picked up on our musings about Buckingham Palace’s determined desire that Kate Middleton should become Catherine, now that she’s to leave the terrestrial world and become a member of the Royal Family.

This is all nonsense of course – she’s a Kate – but so is Buck House (a nonsense, that is).

The other problem they’ve got is to find a duchy for Prince William and Kate to occupy. The traditional ones are mostly occupied by long-serving aristos. The one that’s left is the Duchy of Clarence (which as far as I know doesn’t relate to any bit of real estate) but which used to be the prerogative of kings in waiting.

But Prince Albert Victor, eldest son of Edward V11, who died young in 1892, and was also the Duke of Clarence, is thought by some to have been fin de siecle murderer Jack the Ripper. So the title has fallen into misuse.

But the Palace is getting itself into its usual bind over William and Kate’s nuptials at the end of April. It’s invited a rag, tag and bobtail collection of monarchs (whether serving or in exile) but not heads of state like Barack Obama. This is on the grounds that William isn’t the heir to the throne, his dad Charles is.

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But not inviting Obama is just rude. Who do they think they are?

Meanwhile everyone from Kate’s dry cleaner to her dodgy uncle to the village butcher has been asked, presumably at UK taxpayers’ expense. I know Charles’ PR people have said that he’s paying for it – but all of it? Unlikely.

Anyway back to the point. Kate’s a Kate and there’s nothing these pompous so and so’s can do to make us pretend otherwise.

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About Stephen Foster

Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.
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