‘Upset’ Queen knows she can’t change Prince Harry’s mind after tragic decision

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Senior members of the Royal Family will be out in force to support Her Majesty, 95, at the Duke of Edinburgh’s Service of Thanksgiving on Tuesday morning. The Service gives thanks for His Royal Highness’s dedication to his family, to the Nation and to the Commonwealth as both Consort to Queen and a working member of the Royal Family in his own right”, a Palace statement said ahead of the service.

Prince Philip, who was the Duke of Sussex’s grandfather, died aged 99 in April 2021, the Queen’s constant companion and confidant for over seven decades.

But earlier this month, a spokesperson for Prince Harry confirmed he would not make the trip across the Atlantic for the event in his grandfather’s memory.

The representative for the Duke of Sussex added that, despite this decision, the Queen’s grandson was very much hoping to see Her Majesty soon.

Royal author Phil Dampier claimed: “I’m sure the Queen is very upset he’s not coming tomorrow but she realises she can’t make Harry alter his mindset at the moment.”

The Duke of Sussex’s return to the UK to visit his family has been complicated by the ongoing legal battle surrounding police protection for the Sussexes, should they touch back down on British soil.

Prince Harry is embroiled in a High Court battle against the Home Office after the Duke was told he would not receive the “same degree” of security when coming back from the US.

Prince Harry had offered to pay for the personal security detail himself.

The Duke has said he wants to bring his and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex’s, two children across when he makes the journey from California to London.

But Prince Harry insisted he “does not feel safe” doing so without the protection he seeks.

The Duke’s legal team is arguing the Sussexes’ protection in the US cannot operate with the same efficiency abroad, and does not have access to UK intelligence networks.

Mr Dampier added: “It’s very sad that Harry and Meghan won’t be at Prince Philip’s memorial service and I think one day Harry might regret it.

“He has said that he doesn’t feel safe without Scotland Yard security but to me that sounds like an excuse not to come back to the UK and indicates the rift with his blood family is still bad.

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“Harry was always very fond of his grandfather and was deeply honoured when he took over from him as Captain-General of the Royal Marines, but sadly that didn’t last long.

“The pair attended some Remembrance Day events together and there was always a rapport between them, both being serving military men who had seen active service.”

He claimed: “You get the impression he is still very hurt by what has happened between him and his father and brother, and I’m sure they feel the same, but to miss a memorial for his beloved grandfather is tragic.”

Prince Harry stepped back from royal duties in March 2020, along with his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, and their young son Archie, now two years old.

The couple then welcomed daughter Lilibet Diana after relocating to Meghan’s home state of California, USA.

Prince Harry has made the trip back home to the UK for the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral, and for the unveiling of a statue dedicated to his mother, the late Princess Diana.

Mr Dampier said the refusal to return to the UK for Tuesday’s memorial service throws doubt on any intention to mark the Queen’s landmark Platinum Jubilee on home turf.

He said: “Harry did fly over for his funeral and for the unveiling of the Diana statue, but hasn’t been back since.

“He will be at the Invictus Games in The Hague, but there must now be great doubts about whether he will attend any of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.”

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