The Prescotian Webzine

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A MERSEYSIDE woman was yesterday revealed as the first female equerry for the Prince of Wales. Jayne Casebury, of Prescot, is also the first person to be appointed by the Prince of Wales since his marriage to Camilla Parker Bowles last year.

Yesterday the 36-year-old squadron leader started the prestigious duty which involves being at the couple's side during official engagements and organising their public diary.

 
Officials at the Ministry of Defence suggested a list of possible candidates for the position but the final decision to appoint Sqn Ldr Casebury was made by the Prince and the Duchess of Cornwall themselves.

Sqn Ldr Casebury, who attended St Paul's Church of England Junior School and Prescot School, went on to read English Literature at Loughborough University before qualifying as a teacher.

Last night Derek Baker, deputy head at Prescot School, said: "We're all incredibly proud of Jayne's new position and wish her all the best. I taught Jayne science while she was a pupil here. She was pleasant, respectful and very very bright. I knew then that she would succeed at whatever she chose to do."

In 1995 Miss Casebury joined the Royal Air Force as an RAF training officer. While there she covered training management, design and delivery and has served at various locations across the UK, including the Ministry of Defence in London. During her military career she has also commanded the Airmen's Command Squadron at RAF Halton. She is now based in London at Clarence House but still has family in the Rainhill area.

She met the Prince of Wales before gaining her new Royal role as equerry and yesterday a spokeswoman for Clarence House said she is expected to be introduced to Princes William and Harry when they next return home from Sandhurst. The spokeswoman said: "We are delighted that Miss Casebury has joined the team at Clarence House. The Prince of Wales met with Squadron Leader Casebury before her appointment. It is not quite an interview situation but an opportunity for the Prince to meet the candidates put forward by the Ministry of Defence. She is a great addition and we are sure that she is the best person for the job."

Sqn Ldr Casebury takes over from the Prince of Wales' former equerry, Wing Commander Richard Prattle, who is leaving after two years. Before beginning the post in full in April the squadron leader will undergo a training programme to understand the nuances of the role in the royal ranks. The appointment of equerry is a military one which is invariably filled by a serving or retired officer. Although women have filled the role of equerry for other members of the royal family, this will be the first time a woman has been chosen for Prince Charles.


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