According to royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams, rumors that the Duke of Cambridge, 40, doesn’t want his younger brother, 38, in attendance at the royal festivities aren’t accurate. However, he exclusively told Us Weekly, “There’s no doubt he feels very strongly.”
Fitzwilliams, 73, continued: “Charles is a symbol of national unity, of course, as the monarch, and the invitation comes from him. So far as William is concerned, I mean, it’s a terribly deep rift and I don’t see it being mended.”
The royal commentator claimed that Harry recently “threatened another book,” as reports surfaced that the Duke of Sussex is considering adding new chapters to his bombshell memoir Spare, which did not paint the royal family in the best light.
“It’s a threat,” Fitzwilliams added. “So, you can’t ignore things like that. It’s awful.” Harry also revealed in January that the original draft of the book was 800 pages.
When it comes to whether the royal family is worried Harry and his wife, Meghan Markle, will draw attention away from the new king’s May 6, 2023, crowning by attending, Fitzwilliams said that won’t be the case. “I think that will be a very significant story. There’s no doubt about that,” he explained. “But I would say that when you get the event, I think Harry and Meghan will be very subsumed into it, and I don’t think they will dominate it at all. Quite the contrary, just as they didn’t either the Platinum Jubilee or, obviously, the queen’s funeral.”
Two days after his mother Queen Elizabeth II’s death on September 8, 2022, Charles was officially declared as the King of England during his official ascension ceremony at St. James’ Palace in London. His ceremony is set for the same day as Harry and Meghan’s son Archie’s 4th birthday.
William and Harry’s sibling quarrels over the years came to a head with the release of Harry’s book Spare in January. In the tell-all memoir, the author referred to his older brother as his “archnemesis,” as well as revealed that he got into a physical fight with William in 2019 after he called Meghan “difficult” and “rude,” among many other revelations.
Following the book’s release, a source told Us in February that William — who shares kids Prince George, 9, Princess Charlotte, 7, and Prince Louis, 4, with his wife, Princess Kate — had “made no effort to speak to Harry,” adding, “William feels that Harry is all smoke and mirror and is not to be trusted. He’s trying to move on with his life.”
In January, another source told Us that although Harry — who also shares 20-month-old daughter Lilibet with Meghan — was “extremely relieved the boom is finally out and that people can read his version of events for themselves,” the former military pilot was also “very sad that he and William are so at odds.”
That same month, Harry also weighed in on whether or not he would attend his father’s coronation. “There’s a lot that can happen between now and then,” he said in an interview with ITV at the time. “But, you know, the door is always open. The ball is in their court. There’s a lot to be discussed and I really hope that they are willing to sit down and talk about it.”