How 'painful fallout' from Prince Harry's exit brought Charles and William 'closer'

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry attend the commemorations for the 100th anniversary of the battle of Vimy Ridge
(Image credit: Photo by Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty)

Prince Harry’s royal exit and its “painful fallout” could reportedly be seen to have brought Prince Charles and Prince William closer together.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex might have departed as senior members of The Firm (opens in new tab) two years ago but the aftermath of their decision is still very much being felt by their royal relatives. Earlier this year Kate Middleton strayed from a standard work day (opens in new tab) after taking on two of Harry’s former patronages. Whilst she, Prince William and other royals including Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla have been observing taking an even more prominent role in recent years, including undertaking high profile overseas tours.

Now it’s been suggested that whilst Prince Harry and Meghan’s royal exit might have sparked rumours of a “rift”, it’s changed Charles and William’s relationship for the better.  

Prince Harry, Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge arrive at the Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference at Lancaster House

Writing in the Mail on Sunday (opens in new tab), royal commentator Robert Jobson expressed his belief that Prince Harry’s departure from the “royal fold” signalled a change in the dynamics of Prince Charles’ relationships with both his sons. So much so that it seems the Sussexes’ royal exit could potentially have brought William far closer to his father than he had been previously. 

“William’s relationship with his father has at times been strained,” Robert claimed. “In fact, until the painful fallout of Harry’s departure from the Royal fold, Prince Charles was much closer to his younger son than his heir.”

He went on to reflect on how Charles once used to spend “hours” talking to his younger son before Harry and Meghan “stepped back” (opens in new tab). In contrast, he alleged that William wasn’t quite as keen to open up to his father.

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge attend the commemorations for the 100th anniversary of the battle of Vimy Ridge

“While Harry used to talk with his ‘Pa’ for hours, William was more stand-offish,” the expert stated, before suggesting that, “Occasionally, it has needed his wife Catherine’s deft diplomatic touch to smooth things over between father and son.”

Following Harry and Meghan’s Oprah Winfrey interview which shocked the world with their astonishing revelations, rumours emerged of a royal “rift” between the Duke of Sussex and his father and brother.

Since then William has rejected Harry’s claim (opens in new tab) that he’s “trapped” in the institution and Harry has gone on to open up about the “cycle of pain and suffering” (opens in new tab) he alleged Charles passed on to him.  Speculation has also continued to circulate regarding the Prince of Wales' relationship with his youngest son.

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge attend day one of Royal Ascot

Meanwhile, Robert has suggested that Charles and William have been brought even closer thanks to their shared desire to protect the environment. 

“Even their mutual passion for the environment has somehow managed to lay bare their differences,” he claimed. 

In 2021 Prince William and Prince Charles attended the COP26 UN Climate Change Conference just weeks after the Duke of Cambridge hosted the first ever Earthshot Prize Awards.

Both are longstanding advocates for conservation and it's lovely to think that this could also reportedly have contributed to the strengthening of their bond throughout the challenging recent years following the Sussexes' royal exit.

Emma Shacklock
Senior Lifestyle Writer

Emma is a Senior Lifestyle Writer with six years of experience working in digital publishing, ranging from book publishing to magazines. She currently looks after all things Lifestyle for Woman&Home, Goodto.com, and My Imperfect Life.