Prince Harry could “go rogue” with his own tribute to his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II says former royal butler Paul Burrell.
The royal family will mark the first anniversary of the queen’s death tomorrow. And while Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle have become estranged from the royal family, they could do their own thing.
“At this sad time of remembrance, which should be a time to unite the family, I’m sure Harry is thinking, ‘There must be something I can do,’” Burrell exclusively tells The Mirror.
Prince Harry and Meghan went out on a limb before in the first year that they broke away from the royal family. In November 2020, the war veteran and his wife were photographed laying flowers at the Los Angeles National Cemetery hours after the royal family gathered in London for the annual service at the Cenotaph war memorial.
The couple “wanted to be able to personally recognise Remembrance Day in their own way” their spokesperson told the media. But a similar public demonstration of grief for the queen wouldn’t be appropriate, Burrell tells us.
“That’s where the danger lies because if he does go rogue, and does something completely unexpected, which the royal family don’t approve of, or don’t agree with, then he’s in trouble again,” Burrell says. “And in a way, Harry is the prodigal son, isn’t he? He’s the one that’s cast adrift and able to make mistakes in a very public way. So I think Harry can’t win really, in lots of ways. He’s always going to be the villain. He’s cast himself as the villain. So he has to now play the role of the villain.”
Burrell says the royal family will “be underground” this week. “It’s a time of mourning for them,” he says. So you won’t see much of the royal family and that will be a good opportunity for Harry and Meghan to pop up and create their own little diversion, their own little story of what they’re doing in America.”
To mark the anniversary on Friday, Prince William and Princess Kate will make an emotional pilgrimage to St David’s Cathedral in Wales, where the late monarch visited. The Prince of Wales will lead tributes on behalf of the Royal Family, paying homage to the life and legacy of the Queen, with sources claiming the message will strongly “look to the future”.
Meanwhile, King Charles III and Queen Camilla will reportedly honour the anniversary “quietly and privately” at Balmoral. Prince Harry will be in Britain today for the WellChild awards, where he will deliver a speech.
Burrell urges Harry and Meghan to work with the royal family at this difficult time. “My advice would be, don’t do it,” he says. “Don’t try and steal the limelight. Do it in unison with the royal family. Do it as a whole, not as two halves.”