Bear Grylls is getting ready to attend the Coronation of Britain’s King Charles III on Saturday, May 6 at Westminster Abbey, London, but it won’t be his first brush with royalty as he already has many royal connections.
Bear holds the role of Chief Scout, and as the organization’s figurehead, he is expected to attend royal occasions such as the Coronation, and in the past, he has met the royal family at many events.
The British adventurer holds the title of OBE – which stands for Order of the British Empire, an honor presented to him by Queen Elizabeth II in 2019 for his services to young people.
Princes William and Harry
Bear Grylls’s royal links go back to his school days – he went to Eton College in the 1990s, the same prestigious boarding school as many royals, including Princes William and Harry who followed in Grylls’s footsteps. William attended from 1995 to 2000 and Prince Harry from 1998 to 2003. Lots of A-list celebrities and politicians were educated at Eton – including 20 British Prime Ministers.
Bear, who is said to be a close friend of Prince William’s, has also worked with both Prince William and Prince Harry on wildlife conservation, including a conservation project in China in 2015, to combat the illegal wildlife trade. Bear has praised the royal family’s conservation work and said that he and Prince William are closely involved with a conservation society.
Bear Grylls has been photographed at many events with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge – Prince William and Kate Middleton, including the tennis at Wimbledon. In 2019 he won the sailing regatta, the King’s Cup Regatta, organized by William and Kate Middleton, off the Isle of Wight.
Bear has also influenced the younger members of the royal family, and he says that after meeting Prince George (9) at the King’s Cup regatta, when the youngster was age six, he encouraged him to eat his first ant.
On TV show Good Morning Britain, Bear told the story that Prince George’s grandmother Carole Middleton, had invited him to speak to the young royal, who was a fan of You vs Wild. Bear says he was chatting to George when a stream of ants went past, and Bear said, “Come on, we’ve got to eat one.”
“It was a privilege to give the future King his first ant,” said Bear. “And his eyes lit up as they do with anyone when they’re out in the wild and they face a few fears and they overcome them, so good for him.”
Bear has also worked with Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex. The pair were photographed together at the launch of the Soldier Challenge back in 2011 and Bear has since supported Prince Harry’s Invictus Games, which the prince founded in 2014. During the games, which are held in London, up to 400 wounded, injured, or sick servicemen and women compete in different events over five days.
The Big Help Out
Finally, as Chief Scout, volunteering is important to Bear Grylls and he is using the Coronation celebrations to encourage people to spend a day volunteering in their local community. The Big Help Out is a volunteering initiative with charities like the Royal Voluntary Service, the Scouts, and the National Trust and is organized in tribute to the King’s dedication to public service.
Bear is encouraging people to volunteer during the Coronation holiday. “Volunteering – whether formal or informal – is what powers our communities from Scout leaders to football coaches, collecting the shopping for an elderly neighbor to helping out at the school fete,” says Bear.
‘Whether it’s your first time, or you are an experienced volunteer, The Big Help Out will make it easy to get involved in something that matches your interests and fires your imagination,” he says.
A statement on the Royal website reads: “In tribute to His Majesty The King’s public service, The Big Help Out will encourage people to try volunteering for themselves and join the work being undertaken to support their local areas. The aim of The Big Help Out is to use volunteering to bring communities together and create a lasting volunteering legacy from the Coronation Weekend.”