Prince Harry wrote his father a “deeply personal” note ahead of his homecoming for Prince Philip ’s funeral – but the pair have not repaired their shattered relationship ahead of his return to the US.
The Duke of Sussex reached out to Prince Charles after their relationship “hit rock bottom”, as he prepared to see his family for the first time since quitting royal life last year.
But the Prince of Wales remains “very hurt” by Harry’s decision to appear in a tell-all interview last month with US chat show queen Oprah Winfrey, while the Duke of Edinburgh was seriously ill in hospital.
Sources close to the Duke of Sussex – who now lives in California with wife Meghan and their one-year-old boy, Archie – told how he has been “forced to write letters” to his father due to a “complete communication breakdown”.
In his correspondence he has “outlined his reasons for leaving” while promising to “respect the institution”, sources have revealed.
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However, his brother Prince William is understood to be at odds with how to deal with him after Harry and Meghan launched an all out attack on the family during the two hour TV interview watched by 80 million.
Despite the brothers being seen speaking after their grandpa’s funeral their relationship is understood to be “extremely frosty”.
Harry, 36, made the sensational claim that a member of the family commented on how “dark” his unborn children would be, while Meghan alleged the family refused to help her when she was feeling suicidal while pregnant.
Harry told Oprah his father and brother were “trapped” by the institution and couldn’t leave if they wanted to like he had done.
Palace insiders revealed both future kings were “outraged” at the suggestion.
A royal source said: “Truth be told, Harry didn’t really know what to expect before he came home, which is why he reached out before seeing everyone.
“He wrote a deeply personal note to his dad to try and set things straight but tensions are still running high and things haven’t exactly ironed out the way he had hoped.
“There had been a kind of unspoken agreement between everyone to park whatever has been on each person’s mind, and solely concentrate on supporting the Queen ahead of Prince Philip’s funeral.
“The feeling inside the camp was that it wasn’t the time nor the place to go over things, especially at such an emotional time for everybody involved.”
Charles has since travelled to his Welsh home in Llwynywermod where he is working from home and continuing to observe the royal mourning period which ends on Thursday.
The source said: “Harry didn’t expect everything to be completely back to normal but his feeling after seeing his family was there is a lot of ground to make up.
“Whether that is harder or easier to do on the other side of the world remains to be seen.
“There is a lot of distrust in the camp and everything is still very, very raw.”
One palace insider said Charles was hoping to see his son again after Philip’s funeral but Harry told him he wasn’t sticking around.
Meghan, 39, is expecting their second child, a girl, within weeks and was advised not to travel to the UK for the funeral.
Meanwhile, Charles and William are said to be “completely focussed” on supporting the Queen as she continues to grieve for her husband of 73 years.
As a way of supporting her they have scheduled a meeting to sort out future business of the monarchy and design tailor made roles for each of the seven senior members of The Firm.
It will include collaboration and support for one another from the Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Princess Anne and the Earl and Countess of Wessex.
Palace sources say the two future kings are “totally aligned“ that there is “no way back” for Prince Andrew, while controversy still exists over his relationship with the late sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
The heir and his son will carve up future engagements and projects as well as major tours for seven senior members of the royal family.
A source said: “One of the main issues with Harry and Meghan when they were part of the working family was their inability to understand how things worked. It’s been a lot simpler without them kicking off over why they couldn’t just do what they wanted.
“Things are a lot calmer.”
There will be increased public roles for Sophie Wessex, said to be “tremendous support” over the last year to the Queen, to capitalise on her surging popularity among the public.
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Prince Edward will help support a revamp of the Duke of Edinburgh Awards in tribute to Prince Philip as the adventuring scheme has exploded in inquiries since his death.
A spokesman for the Prince of Wales did not comment.