A chorus of voices have backed a New Zealand radio host who supported an author's claims that Prince Charles is a "spoiled child" in a new book on the prince's life.
On Tuesday, Newstalk ZB host Kate Hawkesby revealed her first-hand experience with Prince Charles when he sat in front of her in a plane. The host described the experience as like "witnessing a spoiled child".
"Over the course of that flight, I witnessed a prince who was stuffy, curmudgeonly, out of touch and arrogant," Hawkesby exclaimed.
The host said she wasn't surprised when she saw Tom Bower's book Rebel Prince: The Power, Passion and Defiance of Prince Charles, which affirmed her thoughts.
Bower spoke to Hawkesby on Newstalk ZB this morning and said he decided to do a proper assessment of the prince after most books about him were "fawning and sycophantic".
"I decided to write the story about how he has tried to rehabilitate himself in the 20 years since Diana died," he said.
Hawkesby said last week the book included claims about how Prince Charles likes to live and travel.
"He's referred to as particular, out of touch and rude. It reveals how he insists on travelling with a complete staff and all his own furnishings, including his own toilet seat and toilet paper. His own pre-mixed drinks with his own glass. And so the list goes on," she said.
Hawkesby asked whether Bower received much pushback from royalists because of the stance of the book.
"No. Some people didn't want to talk but many did want to," he said.
"Well over 100 people spoke to me and many of them were people who used to work with Charles."
Bower said one of Charles' "unfortunate characteristics" is that he demands loyalty but he is not loyal to people who work for him.
"So many of them become quite angry and therefore were more than happy to speak to me about their experiences.
"The book is full of remarkable insight and revelations. He is 70 years old this year and he has done a hell of a lot, not all bad, some of it has been very good.
"But he is a very controversial figure and one of his weaknesses is that he never actually wants to engage with his critics, and that means he lays himself open to even more criticism."
Bower said the most shocking revelation for him was the way Prince Charles handles money, for charities and personal expenditure.
"He is pretty spendthrift and the way he raises money for his charities; he raises a lot but he does mix with some really awful people who shouldn't be allowed access to him.
"Even Prince Phillip accused him of being a rent-to-royal and has told him he has to cut it back."
Bower was also struck by Charles' disloyalty and how he "lives and operates on an extraordinary level".
"On the one hand when people personally meet him, he is marvellous. He is terrific one-to-one and takes great interest in children, grownups and people dying and that sort of thing, for which the royal family is terrific.
"But on the other hand, when he runs his charities and runs his campaigns, he is blind to a lot of the mistakes he is making and one of the great problems is that he is surrounded by sycophants."
Bower said the royal family have in some ways been saved by the profiles of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle and Prince William and Catherine Middleton.
"But they bring dangers too. The trouble is the monarchy does rely a lot on magic and if the young royals become too popular just like the terrible days of Diana and Fergie there will be a blow back so it has to be very carefully managed."
Hawkesby said she usually doesn't believe allegations made in unauthorised biographies, "but this time personal experience tells me much of the claims are spot on".