A royal expert has predicted the Duke of Sussex, 37, when he returns to Europe from his $14million mansion in Montecito for the Invictus Games in the Netherlands, will not come home to visit his grandmother on her birthday. The Invictus Games, an international sporting competition for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women, will take place from April 16 – 22. Her Majesty will celebrate her 96th on April 21.
Robert Jobson, co-author of Diana: Closely Guarded Secret, told the Mirror he believes it would be “highly unlikely” for Prince Harry to pop home for her birthday, “given the schism he has caused in the family.”
Harry’s legal challenge against the UK Home Office, launched when he was told he wouldn’t be provided with the same protective security he received as a working royal, also represents a key issue for the Prince, who even offered to pay for it himself.
Mr Jobson questioned the Duke’s assertion that he doesn’t feel safe coming to the UK under current security conditions, suggesting it was little more than “just another excuse”.
Prince Harry’s approaching biography, allegedly a source of concern for the Royal family, is another key factor affecting whether he will return, with Mr Jobson expecting the book to “tackle [Prince Harry’s] tricky relationship with the Duchess of Cornwall.”
Prince Harry’s press team have been contacted for comment on this claim.
He explained why the approaching book may dissuade the Duke from returning by saying: “Can you imagine how excruciating it would be over dinner if somebody was to ask what’s in the soon to be published Random House book about them?”
Harry received an advance of £14.7million for the book, which is widely tipped to hold dramatic details about the Royal Family and due to be published in the autumn.
The publishers have described it as “the definitive account of the experiences, adventures, losses, and life lessons that have helped shape him”.
If Prince Harry chooses not to visit the Queen on her birthday, it will not be the first key Royal event he has skipped in recent months.
The Queen was forced to attend her husbands’ remembrance service on March 29 without her second grandson present.
Richard Griffin, who spent 14 years as a royal protection officer for Prince Phillip, said: “Prince Philip was their grandfather so William has obviously had a great training from him and is going to learn examples from him.
“I just hope Harry gets some of these things in his mind.
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“It [Harry not being present] was a big disappointment for everybody.
“People were talking about it. Certainly around where I was people were saying he should have been here.”
Mr Jobson went on to explain the seeming contradiction between Harry not being comfortable taking his family to the UK for security concerns, but being happy with taking them to the Netherlands – arguing that it has “nothing to do with safety, but him feeling wanted.”
He added: “In the Hague he will be feted.
“His brothers and sisters in arms, past and present, rightly praise the Afghanistan veteran for giving back to the armed forces and not forgetting them.
“Back in the UK, particularly with his own family, his pending book means he is not cut the same slack.
“Is the Hague any less safe than Westminster Abbey for his grandfather Philip’s service of thanksgiving, where the Queen led her family and the crowned heads of Europe in tribute to her late husband?
“His father, Charles, after being on the receiving end of rants from his youngest son, is barely on speaking terms. William too, has little to say to his brother these days, either. Who can blame them?
“Harry’s loyalties lie elsewhere these days. He doesn’t really care what the British public think of him. He has moved on. Perhaps, so too should we.”