Michael Sheen Slams ‘Insensitive’ King Charles III For Visiting Wales On Special Holiday
Welsh actor Michael Sheen recently criticized the date selected for King Charles III‘s first visit to Wales since his ascension to the throne. Since Queen Elizabeth II passed away on September 8, several members of the royal family received new titles, including Prince William and Kate Middleton, who were named Prince and Princess of Wales.
The Prince of Wales title holds vital significance in Wales, having been the moniker of the leader of the 1400 rebellion against England, Owain Glyndŵr. September 16 was dedicated to him, and over the years, several events have taken place to celebrate the day.
King Charles III and his Queen consort, Camilla, recently paid a visit to Wales on the widely celebrated holiday. According to Sheen, the decision to visit the country on that particular day was insensitive if done intentionally.
Keep reading to learn more.
September 16 Is A Historical Day In Wales
Sheen took to Twitter recently to criticize the timing of King Charles III’s first visit to Wales. The newly crowned monarch and Camilla recently wrapped up their four nations stop in Wales, where they were welcomed and greeted by a horde of people.
A beautiful day in Wales #OG pic.twitter.com/MSxjjte928
— michael sheen 💙 (@michaelsheen) September 16, 2022
In the video Sheen posted, he revealed that the date was September 16, also known as the Owain Glyndŵrday, and a historic day for the nation. The 53-year-old explained that if the date was explicitly picked with the history in mind, the act was “insensitive.”
Sheen started by offering his condolences to Charles and the rest of the Royal family for the loss of Queen Elizabeth, their mother and grandmother. He went on to talk about the timing of King Charles’ recent Wales visit and why he had an issue with it. The actor said, “September 16 is the day that many people here in Wales celebrate Owain Glyndŵr, who was the last native Prince of Wales, self-proclaimed.”
Owain Glyndŵr Day Celebrations Were Canceled
Owain Glyndŵr day is a day set aside to commemorate the efforts of Glyndŵr when he started the 15-year uprisings in 1400. The movement at the time was against the King of England, Henry IV. He was named the Prince of Wales shortly after. Glyndŵr led what is widely seen as the last Welsh war of independence.
The Prince was also made a figurehead in terms of Welsh nationalism as well as the nation’s independence movement. Each year, on September 16, thousands of citizens use the day to celebrate Glyndwr’s life as a legacy during his time as the “rebel” Prince of Wales.
This year was noticeably different because, as a result of the passing of Queen Elizabeth, several events set to take place on Glyndŵr day were canceled. This understandably roused discontentment and anger within communities looking forward to the day.
Michael Sheen Said The Timing Was Connected
In his Twitter post, Sheen gave a rundown of the history of Glyndŵr day and why it was such an important day in Wales. According to him, Glyndŵrwas the last native Prince of Wales the nation had after the rebellion was crushed. Afterward, King Edward I named Prince Edward Prince of Wales in what Sheen said was a “sort of symbolic act of rebuke or punishment and humiliation.”
The actor continued, “So this day, September 16, is important to many people in Wales. Because it marks the moment where Glyndŵr claimed the title of the Prince of Wales again.” According to Sheen, the King’s visit and the day’s significance were clearly related.
The 53-year-old continued, “To choose September 16 to come to Wales having only a short time ago proclaimed that he had created his son William as the new Prince of Wales and to choose this day September 16 to come here as his first visit as King seems full of meaning.”
Michael Sheen Said The Move Was ‘Insensitive’
Sheen further revealed per Page Six that, if the decision to come on such an important day was done “purposefully,” it was “insensitive to the point of insulting.” The actor continued, “If it was done without realizing the significance of the date, then one does wonder what being Prince of Wales for so long actually meant if you’re not aware of what that day means.”
Sheen further revealed that the video intended to add his voice to the rest of the people who noted and mentioned how ironic it was that the celebrations of a traditional Welsh event were canceled due to King Charles’ visit. The 53-year-old said, “I hope it’s not a declaration of intent because that would be very concerning.”
With the change of titles following Queen Elizabeth’s death, Prince William and Kate were both named the new Prince and Princess of Wales. After the announcement, the couple said they were very fond of the country, having lived there a while back.