United Kingdom

Prince William 'requested Peter Phillips stand between him and Harry at Philip's funeral'

Prince William asked for Peter Phillips to stand between him and Harry during Prince Philip's funeral procession yesterday, it has been claimed. 

The brothers were separated by their cousin and Princess Anne's son as they walked behind the Duke of Edinburgh's coffin while it made its way to St George's Chapel in Windsor yesterday afternoon. 

It was the first time William and Harry had appeared together in public since Megxit saw the Duke of Sussex leave for LA with wife Meghan.

Royal sources have now claimed that there was 'frostiness' towards Harry from William and the rest of the family during the funeral, despite the brothers appearing to reconcile as they left St George's Chapel after the service. 

Prince William and Prince Harry were separated by their cousin Peter Phillips as they walked behind Prince Philip's coffin yesterday

However, the brothers appeared to share a long conversation after leaving the funeral service

The siblings had maintained stony expressions as they walked behind their grandfather's cortege, separated by Peter Phillips.

The Duke of Cambridge strode ahead of his brother as they entered the 15th Century chapel, and once inside the atmosphere remained frosty.

William sat with Kate directly opposite Harry but did not appear to make eye contact, instead preferring to focus his gaze towards his grandfather's coffin.

Sources told The Mail on Sunday that Harry has experienced 'a great deal of frostiness' from many of his relatives since arriving in Britain a week ago and self- isolating at Frogmore Cottage, the house given to him and Meghan as a wedding present by the Queen. 

'Ironically the only one who has expressed any sympathy towards him is Prince Andrew,' said one source.

'He knows from Sarah Ferguson – and now first-hand – how it feels to be the outsider, which Harry very much is.

'As far as the others are concerned, there is a deep sense of protection towards the Queen and resentment towards Harry. There is little sympathy for him after what he and Meghan said on Oprah.'

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex accused the Royals of institutional racism during the bombshell 90-minute interview last month and claimed one member of the family – not the Queen or Prince Philip – questioned what colour their son Archie's skin would be.

Princess Anne, Prince Edward and his wife Sophie failed to acknowledge Harry before or during yesterday's service.

'They are still very upset,' the source added. 'They are putting on a united front for the Queen. They all think he has behaved appallingly.'

Prince William (left) and Prince Harry (right) walk either side of Peter Phillips and behind Prince Andrew at Windsor today

Prince William and Kate Middleton (left) sit on the opposite side of St George's Chapel to Prince Harry (right) who sat alone

The Duke of Sussex sits alone in the pews at St George's Chapeal in Windsor Castle this afternoon

However, it was reported last week that William had spoken briefly with his brother on the phone, although the source said communication had been 'more texts than calls'.

Harry has spoken to his cousin Princess Eugenie who remains a steadfast friend. 'He is thought to have seen Eugenie, most likely outside since she's being strict with her new baby,' said the insider. According to one report, William requested that Peter Phillips stand between him and Harry during the funeral cortege.

Asked about the claim, a friend of Harry said: 'He's just doing what he's told and getting on with it.' 

The last time the brothers were seen together in public was on March 9 last year when they attended a Commonwealth service at Westminster Abbey – with the tension between the Cambridges and Sussexes clear to see.

Aides were yesterday reported to have 'been walking on eggshells' all week as the funeral plans were tweaked, but there was relief that the brothers have spoken and done so publicly. 

The princes talked while walking out of St George's Chapel following the service, in a sight which triggered hopes among royal fans of a reconciliation. 

Prince Harry speaks to Prince William as they leave the service at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle yesterday afternoon

Members of the Royal Family including Harry and William walk away from St George Chapel on the grounds of Windsor Castle 

Prince Harry and Prince William walk next to each other as they leave the funeral service at St George's Chapel yesterday afternoon

As the Royals filed out of the chapel, Prince William spoke to the Right Reverend David Conner, the Dean of Windsor, while Harry chatted with Kate behind them. 

William was initially ahead of his wife and brother but turned back towards them to speak to Kate while Harry exchanged pleasantries with the Dean.

Harry then caught up with his brother and sister-in-law and they walked together for a while as William removed his face mask. 

Then, Kate stepped away to speak to the Countess of Wessex and her daughter Lady Louise – leaving the brothers alone. 

The brothers' discussion came following an impromptu decision by some of the Royal Family to walk back to the castle, despite state cars having been put on for them - and it gave the cameras a chance to see them talk. 

Harry's friend Tom Bradby, who was presenting ITV's coverage of the funeral today, said: 'Funerals are a time of reconciliation and that a sight, let's be honest, that's many wanted to see. Not least the family itself.'    

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