Princes William and Harry are set to come together for the first time since their grandfather’s funeral to unveil a statue honoring their late mother Princess Diana on what would have been her 60th birthday.
Speculation is rife as to whether the once close brothers will be using this opportunity to heal a reported rift between them prompted by the interview Harry and Meghan did with Oprah Winfrey.
The brothers will unveil the statue in Kensington Garden’s Sunken Garden and are reportedly planning on delivering separate speeches before joining their immediate family for a “beautiful” and “informal” memorial, according to The Telegraph.
According to an insider who spoke to the British newspaper William and Harry will be “putting on a brave face for the event like they did at the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral. They both know it is not about them but remembering the late princess.”
Prince Harry and Meghan’s shocking revelations during their interview with Oprah Winfrey left the royal family on shaky ground with allegations of racism and Meghan feeling unsupported when she experienced suicidal thoughts while pregnant with Archie.
Their allegations prompted Prince William to break with protocol and declare his family was not racist while on a visit to a school in London with his wife Catherine.
Just weeks after the bombshell interview the brothers’ grandfather Prince Philip died on April 9, two months before his 100th birthday.
Questions surrounding the state of their relationship came to the forefront when they came together for the Duke’s funeral on April 17.
There were hopes that the brothers could put their differences aside for the day to honor their grandfather, a man who had supported them through the harrowing time of losing their mother Princess Diana in 1997.
On the day of their grandfather’s funeral all eyes were on the two brothers as their body language and conversation was scrutinized in an attempt to gauge the mood between the two.
Despite the two brothers being separated by their cousin Peter Phillips during the procession, at one point he took a step back so the brothers could walk side by side.
It seems that despite the brothers being told to ‘bury the hatchet’ and a two-hour meeting with their father Prince Charles issues were not resolved between them and Harry made a swift return to California.
With only months since Harry and Meghan’s interview in which the Prince alleged he had been “cut off” by his father leaving his, Meghan’s and their son Archie’s security in question, Harry sat down for another interview to reveal more about his family.
Speaking to actor Dax Shepherd for the “Armchair Expert” podcast, Harry spoke openly about his personal struggles and seeing a therapist.
At the same time as stating that he places no blame on his family, Harry said Charles handed down a “cycle” of “genetic pain and suffering”.
He added: “I don’t think we should be pointing the finger or blaming anybody. But certainly when it comes to parenting, if I’ve experienced some form of pain or suffering because of the pain or suffering that perhaps my father or my parents had suffered, I’m going to make sure that I break that cycle so that I don’t pass it on basically.”
With so many private matters exposed from a usually very private Royal family means all eyes will be on Harry as he reunites with his brother for this important moment to honor their mother.
There was much speculation that Princes William and Harry would have a private meeting after the ceremony but sources have now said this isn’t going to happen.
But the Sun newspaper’s royal photographer Arthur Edwards said this unveiling is “so important” for the brothers.
“If the unveiling doesn’t break the ice between them, then nothing will,” he told BBC News, adding: “They were so close.”
The Duke of Sussex left self-isolation on Wednesday after spending the past five days in quarantine and has been staying at the Sussexes’ Windsor residence, Frogmore Cottage, where his cousin, Princess Eugenie, now lives with her husband Jack Brooksbank and their baby son August.
It is not known when he will return to the U.S. but it is thought he doesn’t want to be away from his family for too long, particularly since Meghan has just given birth to their second child Lilibet Diana.
The statue unveiling, which is being held on what would have been Princess Diana’s 60th birthday is also expected to be attended by her brother, Earl Spencer, and her sisters, Lady Sarah McCorquodale and Lady Jane Fellowes.
Prince William’s wife Catherine will not attend after being cut from the guest list to keep the numbers down due to COVID-19 protocols which will only allow 15 guests to attend.
“I think keeping the numbers down is a perfect ‘excuse’ for Catherine to stay away. William is fed up with the drama and Catherine doesn’t need to be dragged into this,” a source said, as per Page Six.
“They are planning a private family visit with their children, and that private moment is far more important than the public rhetoric.”
The source added, “William is determined that the Sussex drama does not overshadow this important moment of remembrance to his much-missed mother and is keeping that as his focus.”
I hope the brothers’ relationship does not overshadow an extremely poignant day in their family history. It’s important that these two brothers do not grow apart for the sake of the five children they have between them.