Princes William and Harry have been urged to undertake a 1,000 mile motorcycle trip across Africa.

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Long Way Down rider Charley Boorman wants the young princes to make the journey, despite security officers telling them not to. William and Harry, 25 and 23 respectively, had been planning to use their riding skills to go on the trip, but were discouraged by Foreign Office officials who warned them they would be putting themselves at risk of ambush or kidnapping if they went ahead.

However, Charley Boorman – who travelled 15,000 miles on a motorbike from Scotland’s John O’Groats and South Africa’s Cape Town with Moulin Rouge star Ewan McGregor – has urged the princes to seize the day.

He told Motorcycle News magazine: “I think they should do it. If they wanted to go and do it anyone can do it. It’s not rocket science to do a trip around Africa. I think it would be fantastic and they’d love it.

“It’s a shame for them, because they’re really into their bikes. Maybe they’ll do it another time.”

If the princes go ahead with the trip – which would cost taxpayers UKP100,000, as they would require six royal protection officers to travel with them – it is expected to be scheduled for the summer, after William has finished his four-month pilot training course with the Royal Air Force.