Prince Harry told of Prince Philip's death 'by police' instead of royal family

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The Duke of Sussex was reportedly informed of his grandfather's death by police after he slept through frantic phone calls from the UK.

  • Prince Harry reportedly told of Prince Philip's death by local police after the US Embassy in the UK failed to reach him by phone
  • Buckingham Palace contacted the US Embassy but it is not known whether family members tried to call Prince Harry to break the news before police were alerted
  • This royal news follows reports that Prince Philip once told the Queen to abdicate

Prince Harry was reportedly informed of Prince Philip's death by local police who turned up at his £11million home in Montecito, California, in the middle of the night.

Following Philip's death aged 99 on 9 April, urgent calls were made to Harry around 3am local time, 11am in the UK, to break the sad news of Philip's passing.

A large screen in Piccadilly Circus, London, before the gun salutes to mark the death of Prince Philip

Credit: Getty

According to TMZ, a representative from the US Embassy in London reportedly called the Santa Barbara's Sheriff's Department after repeated attempts to reach Prince Harry.

As it was the early hours of the morning, Harry and his wife, Meghan Markle, were believed to have been asleep at the time of the calls.

Buckingham Palace aides reportedly asked the Sheriff's Department if someone could drive over to the couple's home and tell them the unfortunate news.

When the police officer visited the Sussexes' home, he spoke to a security guard who relayed the message to Harry to call the Embassy – and it is claimed that is how the Duke received the news that Prince Philip had died.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

A Palace source said how Prince Harry was contacted about Philip's death was a private matter and would not comment further.

Prince Philip's death was announced in an official statement by Buckingham Palace around one hour later, at midday UK time.

It read: "It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen has announced the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle."

A few days later, Prince Harry released a personal tribute, describing his grandfather as "master of the barbecue, legend of banter, and cheeky right 'til the end."

Harry flew back to the UK last month to attend Philip's funeral at St George's Chapel in Windsor – it was his first return to the UK since stepping back from royal duties in March 2020.

Celebrity Writer

Roxy James is a freelance Celebrity Writer at GoodTo, covering all things royal, entertainment and reality TV. Be it the latest Royal Family happenings, behind-the-scenes gossip at Strictly Come Dancing or breaking engagement, divorce or baby news - Roxy has it covered.