Prince Harry's memory of the Queen he shared in public and 'broke all the rules' with

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Queen Elizabeth II
-Credit: (Image: Getty Images)

The Royal Family traditionally gathers each year to mark the Queen's official birthday with a day of pomp and ceremony, culminating in an RAF flypast viewed from the Buckingham Palace balcony.

In recent times, Prince Harry has been noticeably absent from these balcony appearances alongside his family. However, for the majority of his life, he was a regular participant.

While Royal enthusiasts always look forward to these balcony moments, often charmed by the antics of the younger royals, Harry revealed in his memoir Spare that these occasions also hold significant personal memories for him.

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In a poignant excerpt from his bestselling memoir Spare - which provides an insider's view of Royal Family life - the Duke of Sussex recalls fond memories triggered by the passing of his beloved grandmother, the late Queen Elizabeth. Among the many shared experiences that resurfaced during his time of mourning, Harry recounts one particularly endearing incident during a balcony appearance when he managed to make the Queen laugh amidst the formality of the occasion.

In his book, Prince Harry shared: "I couldn't stop...remembering. Day and night, images flitted through my mind," as he reflected on the loss of the Queen. "Standing before her during my passing-out parade, shoulders thrown back, catching her half smile. Stationed beside her on the balcony, saying something that caught her off guard and made her, despite the solemnity of the occasion, laugh out loud.", reports the Mirror.

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He also recalled other memories that resurfaced following the Queen's death, including the last time his children were with the former monarch, and when she agreed to participate in a comic video for the launch of his passion project, the Invictus Games. He wrote about how the world got to see the Queen's humorous side, stating people didn't realise "she possessed such a wicked sense of humour - but she did, she always did! That was one of our little secrets."

In another excerpt from Spare, Harry described the "distance" typically maintained when appearing in public as a royal, even when they were all together on the balcony. This contrast made his memory of making the late monarch laugh during one of these occasions even more poignant.

"As a royal, you were always taught to maintain a buffer zone between you and the rest of creation. Even working a crowd you always kept a discreet distance between Yourself and Them. Distance was right, distance was safe, distance was survival. Distance was an essential part of being royal, no less than standing on the balcony waving to the crowds outside Buckingham Palace, your family all around you."