Olive branches and Grandma Diana: what we learned about Prince Harry this week

Five things revealed by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s UK visit and Harry’s NBC interview

1. He may not attend celebrations for the Queen’s jubilee

On Tuesday, it was reported that Harry and his wife, Meghan, were invited to appear on the Buckingham Palace balcony during the platinum jubilee.

But in an interview with the US network NBC’s Today Show, the duke said he was unsure whether they would accept the invitation.

Speaking to the host, Hoda Kotb, he said: “I don’t know yet: there’s lots of things – security issues and everything else. So this is what I’m trying to do, trying to make it possible that … I can get my kids to meet her.”

2. He wants to make sure the Queen has the ‘right people around her’

After reports Harry had met the Queen for tea last week, the duke said he wanted to make sure his grandmother was “protected” and had the “right people around her”.

“Meghan and I had tea with her, so it was really nice to catch up with her,” he said, adding that he believed his relationship with his grandmother to be “really special” and that she had an amazing sense of humour.

When asked what he believed to be her best quality, the duke said: “Her sense of humour and ability to see the humour in so many different things.”

3. He also used his visit to the UK to rebuild some bridges with his father

The visit to the UK has also been seen as an offer of an olive branch in an effort to rebuild relationships, including with his father.

A royal observer said the visit showed Harry “slowly starting to rebuild some bridges with his father” having been critical of him in interviews in the past.

Another said the visit was seen as a gesture after the fallout from the Sussexes’ Oprah Winfrey interview last year. During that interview, the duke said he had felt “let down” by Prince Charles and that he did not return his phone calls for a period of time.

4. He has felt the presence of his late mother

Harry told NBC he felt the “presence” of Diana, Princess of Wales, in everything he did, and that he had spoken to his son, Archie, about Grandma Diana.

He said the presence of his mother had felt constant over the past two years especially. “It’s almost as though she’s done her bit with my brother, and now she’s very much helping me. She’s got him set up, and now she’s helping me set up. That’s what it feels like.

“He’s got his kids, I’ve got my kids … I feel her presence in almost everything that I do now, but definitely more so in the last two years than ever before, without a question.”

5. He does not think his grandmother is bored by her jubilee

During the NBC interview, when asked by Kotb whether he thought the Queen may be bored of her 96th birthday, Harry replied: “I think so.”

But when asked the same question about her jubilee celebrations, he appeared to change his tune, saying: “No. I don’t think so. She’s had a few jubilees now and every one is slightly different. I’m sure she is looking forward to it.”


Tobi Thomas

The GuardianTramp

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