LONDON: A yr after they final noticed each other, Prince William and his brother Prince Harry put their fraught relationship apart as they stated farewell to their grandfather at his funeral on Saturday.
The brothers had been somber and silent as they walked together in a procession behind Prince Philip’s coffin earlier than his funeral at Windsor Castle together with their father, Prince Charles, and different shut family. They had been seen chatting and strolling together after the service concluded.
It was the primary time the brothers had been together in public since Harry stood down from royal duties and moved to the US together with his spouse Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, and their son Archie in early 2020.
Tensions between Harry, 36, and William, 38, got here to the fore after Harry and Meghan gave a revealing interview to US discuss present host Oprah Winfrey final month. The couple portrayed the royal household as detached to Meghan’s psychological well being struggles, and Harry described his relationship with William as “area in the intervening time.”
On Saturday, William and Harry walked in silence on both aspect of their cousin, Peter Phillips, as they joined different senior royals in Philip’s funeral procession. At one level Phillips fell behind barely to permit the brothers to stroll aspect by aspect — a visible echo of the second the pair, as boys in 1997, walked behind the coffin of their mom Princess Diana in one other royal funeral televised all over the world.
The brothers sat reverse one another in St George’s Chapel for the funeral, which was attended by solely 30 individuals due to coronavirus restrictions. While William sat subsequent to his spouse Kate, Harry was on his personal as a result of Meghan is pregnant with their second youngster and was suggested by her physician to not make the lengthy journey.
Afterwards, Harry, William and Kate strolled together exterior the chapel. Moments later, the brothers walked together alone whereas Kate spoke to Zara Tindall, one other of Queen Elizabeth II’s eight grandchildren who’s William and Harry’s cousin.
Rumors of a rift between the brothers — William, the inheritor, and Harry, the “spare” — have rumbled not less than since 2019. That’s when Harry and Meghan separated from the Royal Foundation, initially arrange because the brothers’ joint charitable enterprise, to arrange their very own platform. That yr, Harry stated he cherished his brother dearly however they had been “on totally different paths” and have “good days” and “dangerous days.”
Many consider that William was angered and damage by Harry’s determination to talk so publicly in regards to the royal household’s points through the Winfrey interview. In one explosive allegation, they stated a member of the family — not the queen or Philip — had expressed “considerations” about Archie’s potential pores and skin coloration earlier than he was born. Meghan has a Black mom and a white father.
Days after the interview aired, William insisted “we’re very a lot not a racist household,” and stated he had not spoken to Harry for the reason that broadcast.
It’s unclear whether or not the passing of their grandfather will assist the brothers heal their rift. It wasn’t instantly clear how lengthy Harry, who has been self-isolating according to the UK’s coronavirus restrictions since arriving from California early this week, will keep in his dwelling nation.
Saturday’s funeral was restricted to solely 30 individuals, who all needed to put on masks, sit in household bubbles and stay socially distanced in the identical church that had hosted a whole bunch of individuals for Harry and Meghan’s royal wedding ceremony in 2018. And Britain’s continued coronavirus restrictions could restrict how a lot alternative the brothers will get to clean over their variations.
“Because of the restrictions of Covid, it is troublesome to get all the way down to respectable conservations,” stated royal biographer Penny Junor. “It’s in all probability fairly troublesome to sit down down as they usually would over a beer and focus on issues.”