Prince Harry blasted by ‘appalled’ Royal Family experts


Prince Harry has today been blasted by TV personalities and royal experts after leaked copies of his memoir revealed further attacks on the Royal Family.

In his controversial tell-all book Spare, which was put on sale early in Spain ahead of publication next week, the Duke of Sussex lobbed fresh ‘truth bombs’ at his family.

These included accusations that his brother assaulted him in a row over Meghan and claims that William and their father Charles confronted him after Prince Philip‘s funeral ‘looking for a fight’.

The prince, who quit as a working royal and moved to California with Meghan in a quest for greater privacy, recalls family rows and intimate conversations.

He casts his brother as his ‘arch-nemesis’ and Charles as an emotionally stunted and ineffectual ‘old man’, wrote that he feared Queen Consort Camilla would become a ‘wicked stepmother’ and revealed the King still carries around his favourite teddy bear. 

The late Queen’s former press secretary Dickie Arbiter called Harry’s autobiography ‘a load of balderdash’ and ‘spiteful’ – while ITV presenter Lorraine Kelly admitted her ‘toes will never be uncurled’ after the Duke revealed that he lost his virginity to a cougar in a field outside a pub when he was 17.

Prince Harry blasted by ‘appalled’ Royal Family experts

Harry walking his dog alone in a torrential rainstorm by a quiet California beach this week

The late Queen's former press secretary Dickie Arbiter called Harry's autobiography 'a load of balderdash' and 'spiteful'

The BBC's royal reporter Nicholas Witchell said the book failed to address claims of racism in the Royal Family

The late Queen’s former press secretary Dickie Arbiter (left) called Harry’s autobiography ‘a load of balderdash’ and ‘spiteful’. The BBC’s royal reporter Nicholas Witchell (right) also tore the book apart

Calling the memoir ‘the gospel according to Saint Harry’, Mr Arbiter told BBC Newsnight: ‘Quite frankly. a lot of it is questionable. We had Netflix, six hours of it. We had the Oprah Winfrey interview, an hour of it. There were a lot of untruths in that. 

‘Buckingham Palace even came out to say that “recollections may vary”. And I think this book, over 500 pages long, I think recollections may vary in that too.’

He added: ‘I think it’s a load of balderdash, quite frankly. Royal households don’t brief journos. The journos openly admit that their lives would be much easier if Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace did brief them.

‘Briefing against individual members of the Royal Family is absolute nonsense and Harry, really, this whole exercise of his is revenge. It’s spiteful. 

‘And he knows full well that the rest of the family are not going to come forward and respond to his narrative. That’s the last thing they should do. They should invite silence, and not let the narrative run away with itself.’

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The BBC’s royal reporter Nicholas Witchell told the broadcaster that Harry’s memoir failed to address sensational claims of racism in the Royal Family that were made in his and Meghan’s bombshell Oprah Winfrey interview.

He said: ‘There are, after all, no, as it were irrecoverable lines that we’re aware of on racially inappropriate language or behaviour. Think back to the Oprah Winfrey interview, that was the big issue that emerged there. I’m not aware that that has been taken forward in this book.’

Expert Richard Fitzwilliams called the claims made in Harry’s book ‘awful’ and ‘fantastical’.

And former Vanity Fair editor Tina Brown, a biographer of Princess Diana, said: ‘Harry’s turned into a human hand grenade. It’s raining down on the House of Windsor just at the start of his father’s reign.’ Royal expert Jack Royston said: ‘William will be furious and I cannot see William wanting Harry at the Coronation after everything that’s been said.

‘I think it’s a decision that will be made jointly after discussion. Charles is obviously the King and the Prince of Wales does not trump the King. But William is Charles’s son, Charles and Camilla are both mentioned as well, I think this will be discussed by the three of them together and probably Kate as well. William’s voice does count within that conversation, it doesn’t trump the King but his voice counts.

‘It would have to be a long road because public opinion swings so slowly and one thing we’ve seen is every time they go for the royals, every time they take a swing at them, it damages their reputation in Britain’.

Meanwhile, Ms Kelly said today: ‘If they [the royals] don’t manage to heal this, their children will have no family on their Dad’s side and very few on their Mum’s side. I think it’s very sad.’

In other astonishing revelations, Harry: 

  • Admits lying about taking cocaine as a teenager and recounts how he smoked joints in a bathroom at Eton;
  • Claims he killed 25 Taliban insurgents on military service in Afghanistan;
  • Discusses rumours that James Hewitt is his real father;
  • Describes in eye-popping detail losing his virginity to an older woman who liked ‘macho horses’ and treated him ‘like a young stallion’ in a field behind a pub;
  • Describes a bust-up with William when Meghan said Kate had ‘baby brain because of her hormones’.

Spare was supposed to be published on Tuesday amid a huge secrecy operation by its publisher, Penguin Random House. But in a highly embarrassing blunder copies were put on sale in bookshops across Spain yesterday despite signs on the boxes reading ‘not to be opened until January 10’.

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Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace declined to comment.

While some expressed sympathy at the prince’s clear ongoing emotional distress at the tragic loss of his adored mother, many will consider it a monstrous – and possibly unforgivable – betrayal of his family just four months after the Queen’s death.

One source who knew Elizabeth II well said last night that they felt ‘almost comforted’ that she wasn’t alive to see what her grandson had done.

‘Her Majesty would have been devastated,’ they said. Harry’s much-anticipated memoir is even more explosive than Buckingham Palace insiders had feared.

He admitted regularly taking cocaine at 17 and boasted about getting the Palace to lie about it to a journalist.

The prince also claimed he was innocent of accusations of racism when he was caught on video using the word ‘P***’ to describe an Asian fellow Sandhurst cadet, saying he wasn’t aware that it was a slur and thought it was like calling an American a ‘Yankee’.

But it is his discussion of relationships with family members that is most damaging. The book covers every aspect of his life, charting the disconnect with his elder sibling – whom he calls ‘Willy’ – that started from the moment he was born, when Charles allegedly declared that his duty was done.

He accused William, 40, of being immersed in his position as future heir to the throne, claimed he ignored him when they were pupils at Eton College, and says he repeatedly put him in his place.

In one paragraph Harry, who is affectionately called ‘Harold’ by his family, described himself as feeling like he was born to be the ‘spare kidney’ for his elder brother.

Harry also accused William of being the aggressor during ‘Megxit’, claiming their relationship had become so strained and damaged that his sibling would only ‘scowl’ at him. He described several particularly awkward meetings between himself, Meghan, William and Kate, saying his brother and sister-in-law appeared uncomfortable at being hugged by his future wife.

He also appeared to accuse the Princess of Wales of over-reacting by demanding an apology from Meghan after she fell out with Kate over wedding plans.

Kate was apparently offended that Meghan attributed forgetfulness to ‘baby brain’ after the birth of Prince Louis.

Harry also revealed that the two couples even rowed over seating plans and whether William and Kate should be put together.

He says when William confronted Meghan and defended his wife, Meghan snapped back at the prince, ‘take your finger out of my face’. While Charles is spared more pain than many had expected, Harry painted him as an ineffectual father who wasn’t even able to hug him when telling him of his mother’s death in a car crash.

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He said that when he confided in Charles about suffering panic attacks as a grown man, the prince looked at his plate sadly and said he had failed him.

However, in what are sure to be distressing passages for the King, Harry described how when he returned to the UK to attend Prince Philip’s funeral in 2021, a clearly distressed Charles wailed at his warring sons not to make his ‘final years a misery’.

Harry claimed that he and William had an explosive row about Meghan, which resulted in his brother grabbing him by the collar, breaking his necklace and knocking him to the ground, breaking and injuring himself on a dog bowl. Afterwards he first called not his wife, but his therapist, he said. 

And William, he claimed, is his ‘arch-nemesis’ and ‘polar opposite’.

As for the Queen Consort, who comes off relatively lightly in the book, Harry said he and William begged their father not to marry the ‘other woman’, fearing she would be their ‘wicked stepmother’ but added that they eventually came to tolerate her.

The fifth in line to the throne did, however, accuse Camilla of leaking stories about him through a palace spin doctor.

The loss of his mother, Princess Diana, is also a central theme of the memoir, to which Harry returns repeatedly.

He dedicated the book to her, Meghan and their two children.

He repeatedly dreams his mother might come back, and once turned to a woman with ‘powers’ who passed him a message from Diana saying that he was ‘living the life she couldn’t’.

The prince also wrote about drinking his first cocktail with the Queen Mother and teaching her to do an impression of TV character Ali G.

In interviews set up to promote the memoir – further trailers of which have also been released – an emotional Harry refuses to say whether he will go to his father’s Coronation this spring but denies invading William and Charles’s privacy by revealing intimate details in his book.

Goading the royals, Harry says ‘the ball is in their court’ to resolve the fallout if he is to attend the event on May 6.


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