If all goes wrong with kids... blame the godparents

Mike and Zara Tindall leave the Chapel Royal in St James's Palace, central London, following the christening of Prince George. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo
Mike and Zara Tindall leave the Chapel Royal in St James's Palace, central London, following the christening of Prince George. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo
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For many years, the only thing royal Zara Tindall and I had in common was a penchant for broad-shouldered rugby players with frying-pan-to-face looks.

Zara rides horses. I bet on them. She is 15th in line to the throne. I’m more 15th in line at Asda’s create-your own pizza counter. Different worlds, me and Z.

But last week something changed. She was named, among six others, as the godparent of Prince George just ahead of his christening.

This year I too was given that sacred role of spiritual guide - or glorified babysitter - to my cousin’s daughter. And I say given, because I was offered no choice in the matter.

Despite protestations in which I cited my reluctance to hold said child at her first birthday party for fear of getting ‘baby dirt’ on my Vivienne Westwood blazer, I failed to convince the cousin to pick a more suitable candidate.

The fact I almost killed the then-toothless youngster with a Haribo fried egg now ancient history, apparently, and my request to change the job title to ‘lifestyle guru’ flatly was flatly refused.

No surprise, then, that I haven’t taken the role particularly seriously so far. In fact I reckon I’ll probably only be of use to the toddler when I can buy her beer and sub her for fag money.

And, if she’s anything like me, she’ll be at least 12 before any of that starts.

The way I see it godparents are appointed for one of two reasons. Number one is greed. Mums and dads aren’t stupid. Why do you think Elton John has 10 godchildren? There aren’t even 10 people who like him.

Doesn’t matter when goddaddy has billions in the bank and an obligation to give Christmas and birthday gifts though, does it? I’ll give my old mate the Sultan of Brunei a call if I ever reproduce.

The only thing I’ll be leaving to the goddaughter is gambling debt, so I suspect the motives which governed my appointment fell into the second category - pity. Heidi’s mum and dad racked their brains for the lady least likely to find love and have a family of her own and all roads pointed to Molly. Flattering.

But so much was made of Zara and the rest of Prince George’s six (yes, six!) godparents, I felt a pang of guilt and resolved to take it a bit more seriously. This spiritual guidance can’t be too hard, surely. It’ll be a learning curve. And I’ve already learned my first lesson: keep her off the Haribo.