Prince Harry has returned to LA. For days there’s been all kinds of speculation about how much time he would spend in the UK and how he would spend it, with people nefariously hoping that his visit back to London without Meghan Markle would result in a reconciliation – the implication being that Meghan’s the one who’s the problem. Some were also rumouring that he was planning to stay for the Queen’s birthday, which is today.
The thing is, no one really knew about what Harry was going to do, least of all the places where it was being reported, since Harry has made it known how he feels about UK media. The fact that he’s at home now with his wife and kid then means that whatever may have happened between him and his family members, it wasn’t enough to extend his trip.
That doesn’t mean that there weren’t positives to come out of it, although maybe not the positives that have been circulating. Like the story about Harry writing Prince Charles a “deeply personal” letter. According to Omid Scobie’s piece in Harper’s Bazaar, this is not true. There was no correspondence but everyone was in agreement that the focus would just be on Prince Philip and the funeral:
“This trip was to honor the life of his grandfather and support his grandmother and relatives,” a source close to Harry explains. “It was very much a family-focused period of time. Saturday broke the ice for future conversations but outstanding issues have not been addressed at any great length. The family simply put their issues to one side to focus on what mattered.”
All in all, pretty neutral information. The only thing worth commenting here is that, well, of course if there was any family that would be able to NOT talk about the elephant in the room, it would be this one.
To go back to media involvement though, and the British royal family’s relationship with the UK media, in particular the tabloid media, which is what Harry addressed quite directly in the interview with Oprah, did you see that story about Arthur Edwards and how he photographed the funeral?
Arthur Edwards is the photographer for The Sun, one of the papers that Harry and Meghan sued. He had a special hole that he was allowed to hide in at St George’s Chapel during the funeral to get exclusive photos – and he claims that these were Prince Philip’s wishes.
If this was indeed arranged by Prince Philip before his death, it confirms that the royal family obviously makes accommodations for tabloid coverage. And even if it wasn’t Philip himself who allowed this, someone on the royal team did, since that’s the only way Arthur Edwards would have been able to be in that position.
So here’s a paper writing some sh-tty things about Harry and Meghan, and as Harry and Meghan have confirmed, their own family members continue to support that outlet. These are not problems that can be solved overnight. And these are very much problems that need to be addressed.
What’s interesting is that it’s not like Prince William was particularly fond of the UK tabloids in the past. And he hasn’t taken a leadership role in cutting that off, especially not now since they’ve picked his side over his brother’s. Curious to see if that will ever change, or if William will continue to do things as they’ve always been done.
Here he is, with Kate, theme-dressing for the occasion, at the Air Training Corps in London today. Kate is the Honorary Commandant, a patronage passed on to her by Prince Philip.