Prince Harry has revealed in his bombshell memoir his emotional final words to his beloved grandmother the Queen when he visited her body at Balmoral just hours after she passed away.
Writing in his autobiography Spare, which has been released in Spain ahead of its publication in the UK next week, the Duke of Sussex describes how he whispered to her that he hoped ‘she would be happy’ and reunited with her rock and stay Prince Philip, who had died a year earlier, and how he admired her for having carried out her duties until the end.
Harry scrambled to Scotland to see his beloved grandmother Elizabeth II – Britain’s longest reigning monarch – on September 8 last year after Buckingham Palace announced that she was gravely ill. However, he failed to reach the estate before she passed away aged 96.
In a moving passage, the Duke describes how he learned of the Queen’s passing after checking the BBC news website. Upon arriving at Balmoral, he was greeted by Anne, the Princess Royal, who then took him upstairs to her room, where the late Sovereign was lying.
He writes: ‘I advanced with uncertainty and saw her. I stayed still, watching her carefully for a good while.
‘I whispered that I hoped she was happy and that she was with Grandfather now. I said that I admired her for having carried out her duties until the end. The Jubilee, the welcoming of the new Prime Minister’.
Prince Harry has revealed in his bombshell memoir his emotional final words to his beloved grandmother the Queen when he visited her body at Balmoral just hours after she passed away
Harry arriving at Balmoral shortly after the Queen died last year
Harry’s new memoir unleashes jaw-dropping attacks on his family, leaked copies revealed yesterday.
Attacks rain down in every chapter: from accusations that his brother assaulted him in a row over Meghan to claims that William and their father Charles confronted him after Prince Philip’s funeral ‘looking for a fight’.
Harry also alleges that William and Kate – his once adored sister-in-law who is now painted as cold and unfriendly – urged him to wear his infamous Nazi fancy dress outfit.
The prince, who quit as a working royal and moved to California with Meghan in a quest for greater privacy, recalls in excruciating detail dozens of family rows and intimate conversations. He reveals his father’s medical ailments and the fact the King still carries around his favourite teddy bear.
He is unceasing in his bitterness at being pigeon-holed as the ‘Spare’ to William’s heir – the title of his ghost-written memoir.
He casts his brother as his ‘arch-nemesis’, Queen Consort Camilla as a ‘wicked stepmother’ and Charles as an emotionally-stunted and ineffectual ‘old man’.
In other astonishing revelations, Harry:
- Proudly 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;
- Accuses Kate of over-reacting when Meghan said she had ‘baby brain because of her hormones’ during an explosive row between the two women.
Prince Harry walks alongside his wife Meghan and Catherine, Princess of Wales, at the Palace of Westminster at the lying-in-state of the Queen
Prince Harry (pictured centre) with his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II, grandfather Prince Philip and brother Prince William at the wedding of Lady Tamara Katherine Grosvenor & Edward Van Cutsem in 2004
Duke and Duchess of Sussex leave after a service of thanksgiving for the reign of Queen Elizabeth II at St Paul’s Cathedral
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 yesterday copies were put on sale in bookshops across Spain despite signs on the boxes reading ‘not to be opened until January 10’.
Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace declined to comment and were last night frantically digesting the contents of Harry’s 570-plus page diatribe.
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 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 admits regularly taking cocaine at 17, but boasts about getting the palace to lie about it to a journalist.
The prince also claims 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 accuses William, 40, of being immersed in his position as future heir to the throne, claims 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, describes himself as feeling like he was born to be the ‘spare kidney’ for his elder brother.
Harry, Meghan, William and Kate at Westminster Abbey in March 2018
Harry also accuses his elder brother of being the aggressor during ‘Megxit’, claiming their relationship had become so strained and damaged that William would only ‘scowl’ at him. He describes 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 appears 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 reveals 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 paints 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.
He says 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 describes 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 claims 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. Afterward he first called not his wife, but his therapist, he says.
And William, he claims, is his ‘arch-nemesis’ and ‘polar opposite’.
As for the Queen Consort, who comes off relatively lightly in the book, Harry says he and William begged their father not to marry the ‘other woman’, fearing she would be their ‘wicked stepmother’ but adds that they eventually came to tolerate her.
The fifth in line to the throne does, 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 dedicates the book to her along with 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 writes in the book about drinking his first cocktail with the Queen Mother and teaching her to do an impression of the 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.