There’s been plenty said about how David Beckham would like to be ‘Sir David’ one day.
And when it emerged that King Charles wants to meet him to talk about how David might use his vast popularity to help Charles’s charity, The Prince’s Foundation, we heard more of it again.
Perhaps it’s true. But the David I know is driven by genuine affection for the royals – and he is already friendly with a surprising number of them.
His family are proud monarchists. And so is he.
‘I was at home when I first heard that the Queen had been taken ill,’ Beckham told me recently. ‘Listening to the news and talking to people, you could feel the whole country hold its breath.
A smartly dressed David Beckham queues for 13 hours to see Queen Elizabeth’s lying in state at Westminster Hall
A proud Beckham family after David received an OBE. Pictured are his maternal grandparents, Joseph and Peggy West, Victoria and David
Princes William and Harry smile with Beckham at a Football Association reception in South Africa. The friendship with Harry has cooled since then
‘When the announcement came we all felt like we wanted to get together with family and friends’.
If he was deeply saddened by the death of Queen Elizabeth last year, it was his late grandfather, Joe, who taught him to hold the royal family in such high esteem.
(Joe, his mother’s father, is remembered in Beckham’s full name – David Robert Joseph Beckham.)
As a child, the former England captain would see his grandfather put on a suit when there were big royal moments – watch on the television at his East London home.
It was those moments which began the footballing legend’s love affair with the royals.
As his career grew, he got to know Princes William and Harry well and today he counts the future King as a good friend.
One source says: ‘David and William’s friendship has grown and grown over the years, they have worked on some great projects together.’
Beckham and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are no longer close however. ‘He and Harry are no longer friends,’ confirms the source.
Beckham and Prince William at the launch of a United for Wildlife campaign
Prince William and David Beckham at the launch of the Our Planet documentary
William greets David Beckham at Wembley during Euro 2020
Harper Beckham’s sixth birthday party was held at Buckingham Palace, courtesy of Princes Eugenie
Beckham gets a seat close to Queen Elizabeth, Prince Harry and Princess Beatrice for the Queen’s Young Leader Awards in 2016
There are other royal friends, too, however, including Sarah Ferguson. The Duchess of York, ex-wife of Prince Andrew, was introduced to the footballer by David Gardner, Beckham’s best friend.
He also knows Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, daughters of Fergie and Andrew.
It was with those friendships in mind – and, of course, the memory of his grandfather – that Beckham knew he had to get suited and booted and queue up to see the late Queen when she was lying in state at Westminster Hall.
The full 13-hour queue that is, not a celebrity short cut.
‘Speaking more of his fondness for the Monarch, who died in September 2022, Beckham said: ‘You could feel the waves of sympathy for the Royal Family from around the world and how loved our Queen was.
David Beckham nears the end of his long wait to see the Queen’s coffin in Westminster Hall
David bows to meet Queen Elizabeth at an FA reception
David Beckham bows his head as he shakes hands with the Queen as John Major looks on
David Beckham greeting King Charles with a jar of his own honey during a special event by the British Fashion council in 2023
Prince Charles speaking with David Beckham prior to ‘Our Planet’ premiere in April 2019
Princess Anne arriving with the Olympic flame accompanied by David Beckham and Sebastian Coe
David with Zara at the launch of ‘Everyone’s Olympic Games’ in London 2011
David and Victoria greeting Prince Michael of Kent at the F1 Grand Prix at Silverstone, 2007
David with Alan Shearer and Prince Andrew at Wembley to publicise the ‘full stop’ campaign by the NSPCC
‘I thought about my mum and dad and my late grandparents and how they brought us up to respect the Royal family. That was what made me join the queue for the lying in state.
‘I was in that queue a few hours longer than I thought I would be but it was an experience I’ll never forget. I met some great people and we all kept each other going.
‘People from all walks of life there just to show their respect and be part of a moment in history. A long night but I felt lucky to be there.’
Source: | This article originally belongs to Dailymail.co.uk