Around 100 staff at Clarence House, the former residence of King Charles III, have been warned they are at risk of redundancy because of his change in role.
According to reports, staff were told their jobs were at risk during the thanksgiving service for the Queen in Edinburgh on Monday.
The Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) has called for the decision to be reversed, stating that announcing redundancies during a period of national mourning was “nothing short of heartless”.
King Charles’ top aide, Sir Clive Alderton, said in a letter to staff that some of the household’s former activities would no longer need to be carried out.
The passing of Queen Elizabeth II
“It is therefore expected that the need for the posts principally based at Clarence House whose work supports these areas, will no longer be needed,” the letter said.
Many of the staff involved would have supported the new King and the Queen Consort during this period of mourning, the PCS said.
It added that it seemed unlikely that Prince William, who would now adopt the role of the Prince of Wales, would be able to manage the additional workload without these employees.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said: “While some changes across the households were to be expected, as roles across the royal family change, the scale and speed at which this has been announced is callous in the extreme. Least of all because we do not know what staffing the incoming Prince of Wales and his family might need. We therefore call for an immediate halt to the redundancy process.”
A Clarence House spokesperson told the BBC: “Following last week’s accession, the operations of the household of the former Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall have ceased and, as required by law, a consultation process has begun.
“Our staff have given long and loyal service and, while some redundancies will be unavoidable, we are working urgently to identify alternative roles for the greatest possible number of staff.”