Prince Harry says he is making sure the Queen is ‘protected’

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·5-min read
Prince Harry says he is making sure the Queen is ‘protected’
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Prince Harry on Wednesday claimed he was “making sure the Queen is protected” and has “the right people around her” in another major interview with a US network.

His comments came in a clip released by NBC that has caused “disquiet” among Buckingham Palace aides and could undermine efforts to build bridges ahead of the platinum jubilee celebrations.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex had a “secret” meeting with the Queen last Thursday at Windsor Castle ahead of the Invictus Games for injured and sick servicemen and women. In the interview with NBC Today presenter Hoda Kotb the prince, who lives in California, said he had been “just making sure the Queen is protected and got the right people around her”.

One senior royal household figure said: “The fact that the Duke of Sussex is once again talking on American television about his private meetings is unhelpful. For there to be constructive dialogue between all parties going forward there must be discretion. Only then can there be a lasting trust.”

Opening ceremony of the Invictus Games in The Hague

The NBC interview comes a year after Harry and Meghan’s famous chat with Oprah Winfrey in which they accused unnamed royals of racism.

In the NBC clip Harry does not make clear who he is talking about or mention any other member of the royal family or household. However, three weeks ago Prince Andrew played an unexpectedly prominent role at the memorial service for his father the Duke of Edinburgh. He escorted his mother into Westminster Abbey in what was his first public appearance since settling a sexual assault case brought against him by Virginia Guiffre.

But the Queen is understood to have been irritated by courtiers’ claims after the service that she was “bullied” by Andrew rather than making the decision herself. In the NBC interview Harry also praised the monarch’s “great sense of humour” and said it was “really nice to catch up with her”.

The prince, 37, added: “Being with her, it was great. It was just so nice to see her. She’s on great form. Both Meghan and I had tea with her. Home for me now is, for the time being, in the States and it feels that way as well.”

The conversation was previewed on NBC Nightly News last night and was being shown in full today. Before their meeting with the Queen, the Standard understands that Harry and Meghan arrived late for a separate meeting with his father, Prince Charles.

This had to be cut short after about only 15 minutes when Charles had to leave to prepare to attend the Maundy Thursday service at St George’s Chapel in Windsor, where he was standing in for the Queen.

It meant the couple were left alone in the room with the Duchess of Cornwall until he returned. A close source said: “Nobody was in the room other than the principals for either meeting. No courtiers. Nobody. Only those present know what was said.”

Harry’s strained relationship with Camilla is reported to form part of the narrative of his forthcoming memoir that is being published by Penguin Random House. He is understood to have been paid “millions” for his “accurate and wholly truthful” account of his life.

Royal aides also fear what might have been said in his forthcoming documentary on the Invictus Games in the Hague, when he was followed by a Netflix camera crew.

In the NBC inteview the Duke of Sussex also appeared to sidestep a question on whether he misses Charles and William, telling presenter Ms Kotb: “For me at the moment, I’m here focused on these guys [Invictus athletes] and these families and giving everything that I can, 120 per cent to them to make sure they have the experience of a lifetime.

“That’s my focus here. And when I leave here, I get back and my focus is on my family who I miss massively.”

In a separate part of the interview the Duke of Sussex also raised doubts over whether he would be able to attend the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

He said he was hoping to return for the landmark occasion, but referenced his ongoing battle over security arrangements in the UK.

The prince is challenging the government’s decision to refuse security during his visits from the US.

Asked by Ms Kotb whether he was attending, 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, you know, I can get my kids to meet her.”

He also spoke candidly about how his mother continues to guide him, more than 24 years on from her death.

He revealed that he speaks to two-year-old Archie about “Grandma Diana”, saying: “I don’t tell him all the stuff that happened but I say this is, ‘Grandma Diana’, we’ve got a couple of photos up at the house.

Asked whether he felt her presence, he added: “It’s constant, and it has been over the last two years, more so than ever before.

In a separate interview with People magazine Harry said he “can’t wait” to take his children to the Invictus Games in the future.

The duke also said he was a “proud papa” after his 10-month-old daughter Lilibet took her first steps a few days ago. Harry told the magazine that becoming a parent had added “another emotional layer” to his view of the games, as he thought about his own desire to leave the Army before starting a family, to spare them the “heartache” of separation and the fear of him coming home injured.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting