'The King never rests': Charles' 'relentless schedule' ensures he doesn't eat lunch and works well past midnight

'Charles does get a break from his rigorous schedule around 1 pm but not to eat but to get outside to walk,' says his former secretary Julian Payne

'The King never rests': Charles' 'relentless schedule' ensures he doesn't eat lunch and works well past midnight
King Charles III is known for maintaining a highly strict and extremely busy schedule (Alastair Grant - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
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WINDSOR, ENGLAND: During the throning of 73-year-old King Charles III, many had expressed concerns about the septuagenrian's jam-packed and "relentless" schedule. However, his former communications secretary showed confidence in him as he claimed that Charles had an even more frantic schedule when he was the Prince of Wales.

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The King’s former press secretary Julian Payne shared Charles' day-to-day life schedule when he was heir and described it as “pretty relentless”. “The working day is pretty relentless. Beginning with the radio news headlines and a breakfast of seasonal fruit salad and seeds with tea, Payne said, adding, “The King doesn’t eat lunch; so, an early lesson I learnt when out on the road with him was to have a big breakfast or bring a few snack bars with you to keep you going.”

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Clapping back at rumors that the King was served a line of eggs to choose from every morning, Payne said, "I never saw a single boiled egg at breakfast in all the years I worked there.” He revealed that the King's household was run with precision by a small but dedicated group of staffers, who had been with him for many years. “They are some of the most loyal, kind, and funny people I have ever met,” he said. 

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Prince Charles, Prince of Wales visits the Historic Dockyard Chatham in Kent, two days before the 2022 season opening, to see some of the Dockyard's flagship projects, on February 2, 2022 in Chatham, England.
King Charles III had a very rigorous schedule when he was Prince of Wales (Arthur Edwards - Pool/Getty Images)

Payne said that not just at home, but the King's day in office was equally busy. From his meeting with Sir Clive Alderton, his principal private secretary to his back-to-back 45-minute sessions on his charity’s next projects, the monarch spends an organized and tightly-packed day in the office. Twice a year all his work was put into a new six-month diary.

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However, Charles does get a break from his "relentless schedule" around 1 pm but “not to eat but to get outside to walk.” "The King dislikes being inside for too long and always has the windows wide open.” Payne said. Charles’ first proper break of the day comes around 5 pm when he leaves his desk and steps out to have some tea, sandwiches, and fruit cake with the Queen Consort Camilla.

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Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, known as the Duke of Rothesay while in Scotland, during a roundtable with attendees of the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation seminar to discuss allergies and the environment, at Dumfries House, Cumnock on September 7, 2022 in Lanark, Scotland. The Duke and Duchess of Rothesay visit Lanarkshire and the Scottish borders.
Prince Charles would reportedly never eat lunch and hardly took any breaks  (Jane Barlow - WPA Pool/Getty Images).

He would then return to his desk where he tackles the mountain of paperwork which never seemed to get any smaller despite the continuous efforts of his PAs. For the King, dinner is at 8.30 pm sharp and then at 10 pm, he heads back to his desk, usually ends up working well past midnight.

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Payne said the King's habit for late nights was also true of public engagements, where his gregarious approach and willingness to chat to lots of people meant these would often go on for hours on end. "When he’s not home, the schedule is a mixture of invitations for his four hundred charities which he is a patron of, military events, and royal duties which include work such as opening parliament and Remembrance Sunday," Payne said

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