Prince Harry reportedly rejected a potential peace offering from his father, King Charles, on the solemn occasion of the anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II’s death.
The offer, which is believed to have been an attempt to bring healing and reconciliation to the fractured relationship between father and son, appears to have fallen on deaf ears.
The anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II’s passing was a day of reflection and remembrance for the world and a time for the Royal Family to gather and pay their respects. However, the rift between Prince Harry and his father, King Charles, cast a shadow over this year’s commemoration.
Royal experts suggest that King Charles extended an olive branch to his son in the form of an invitation to spend time together on this poignant day at Balmoral in Scotland, where the King was staying at the time and where the late Queen died last year.
The offer was seen as a genuine effort on King Charles’s part to mend the strained relationship that has developed between the two since Prince Harry’s departure from royal duties and his subsequent relocation to the United States. However, Harry reportedly turned down the offer.
“For Harry, this was a missed opportunity,” said Editor-in-chief of Majesty Magazine and royal expert Ingrid Seward.
“He should have braved it out and gone to see them. If the King invites you to Balmoral, then most people would cancel all of their travel plans. He could have easily rearranged things slightly to allow himself the time.”
Instead of joining his family, Harry marked the solemn day by visiting St. George’s Chapel at Windsor, where his grandmother is buried, to pay his respects.
“Any attempts for a rapprochement must be on the King’s terms,” Seward said.
“I’m glad he is showing some backbone and offering this olive branch. But Harry must have known that not only the King but the whole of the royal camp decamp to Balmoral for the summer, and that was the only place he could go.
“I am not sure if Harry has realised how hurt his father was, especially about the things he said about Camilla [in Spare, his memoir released last January]. But of course, Charles will always welcome him, as he is a forgiving man, and it’s his son.
“But it has to be on his terms, and Harry has to apologise, not the other way ‘round. If he wants security and somewhere to stay, palaces which are dust sheeted and thoroughly cleaned when royals are not in residence during summer are not going to be opened for Harry.”
Although the divide between Charles and Harry remained unhealed, the King opted to commemorate the day with heartfelt remembrance of his mother and recognition of her profound influence on both the United Kingdom and the world.
In a heartfelt gesture, the King released a moving message accompanied by a previously unreleased photograph of the beloved Monarch, while expressing his deep gratitude for the outpouring of love and support he and his family have received since the passing of his beloved mother.
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The image of Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was captured at Buckingham Palace on October 16 1968, as part of an official sitting granted to Cecil Beaton (1904-80). It was chosen by His Majesty The King to mark the anniversary.
“In marking the first anniversary of Her late Majesty’s death and my Accession, we recall with great affection her long life, devoted service and all she meant to so many of us,” he said.
“I am deeply grateful, too, for the love and support that has been shown to my wife and myself during this year as we do our utmost to be of service to you all.”