PRINCE HARRY and Prince William have been increasingly lining separate lives this year – but the source of the tensions between the royal brothers dates all the way back to Christmas 2017, according to a royal author.
Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex are currently away on leave with baby Archie, and the Palace has confirmed the young family will be spending their Christmas break with the Duchess’ mother Doria Ragland in the US. William and Kate, on the other hand, are set to have their traditional festive break at Sandringham with the Queen, Prince Philip and the rest of the Royal Family. Royal commentators have questioned whether the two separate decision reflect a growing coolness between the Sussex’s and Cambridges, as the Duchesses appeared to be at pains to show a united front at Christmas last year.
However, reports emerged last year that the source of the strife between the brothers dated back to Christmas 2017.
That was the year that the Queen allowed Meghan, who had become engaged to Harry in November, to spend the festive break with the Royal Family – a royal first as usually only married couples are invited by Her Majesty to Sandringham.
Meghan and Kate were pictured that year side by side on the traditional walk to church on Christmas Day that royal fans look forward to every year.
It was read as a sign that the Royal Family had welcomed Meghan with open arms and that the Duchesses were kindling a friendship together.
However, royal author Katie Nicholl, writing in Vanity Fair in November 2018, claimed that the royal brothers actually began to ”fall out” that Christmas.
Ms Nicholl wrote: “According to one of the princes’ mutual friends, there was a fallout last Christmas when Harry told William he didn’t think his older brother was doing enough to welcome Meghan into the family.”
The friend said: “Harry felt William wasn’t rolling out the red carpet for Meghan and told him so.
“They had a bit of a fall out which was only resolved when Charles stepped in and asked William to make an effort.
“That’s when the Cambridges invited the Sussexes to spend Christmas with them.”
Harry and Meghan stayed with Kate and William at Anmer Hall, which is very close to the Queen’s residence at Sandringham Hall, over the festive period in 2017.
However, last year, although they spent Christmas Day itself together with the rest of the Royal Family, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex turned down a second invitation to stay with Kate and William.
A source also told Ms Nicholl that tensions between the brothers had been growing in the intervening year, adding: “Kate and Meghan are very different people and they don’t have a lot in common but they have made an effort to get along.
“Any issues are between the brothers.”