Prince Harry arrived in the U.K. on Sunday in preparation for his grandfather’s funeral next week. Prince Philip died Friday morning at the age of 99, and Harry is expected to participate in the ceremony on April 17, after he completes a five-day quarantine period at Frogmore House in Windsor.
Harry has not been back to the U.K. since March 2020, when he and Meghan Markle completed their duties as senior royals at the Commonwealth Day service. Relations between Harry and his family have reportedly been particularly frosty in the aftermath of the interview he and Meghan gave Oprah, in which the couple recalled certain members raising “concerns about how dark [Archie’s] skin would be” before he was born. After the special aired, Harry is said to have started (not-so-productive) conversations with Princes Charles and William, although unnamed tabloid sources recently claimed that William has accused his brother “of putting fame over family after the big interview.”
Still, a source told Vanity Fair that Harry “was told about his grandfather’s death at the same time as the rest of the family and he is grieving just like the rest of them,” and will walk alongside William in the funeral procession from Windsor Castle to St. George’s Chapel. On Monday, Harry released a strikingly thoughtful statement in honor of his grandfather, remembering him as “master of the barbecue, legend of banter, and cheeky right ’til the end.” Philip was “authentically himself, with a seriously sharp wit, and could hold the attention of any room due to his charm — and also because you never knew what he might say next,” the statement continued.
While Meghan reportedly made “every effort” to fly to the U.K. with Harry, because she is pregnant — the couple’s second child is due this summer — her physician declined medical clearance for the trip. As for the funeral itself, the public has been asked not to attend, in deference to coronavirus protocols.
This post has been updated.