William and Harry on the Outs? Drama Heats Up Between the British Royals

Vanity Fair

The rumors of a rift between the Cambridges and Sussexes have reached a fever pitch. While we still don’t know why William and Harry have apparently fallen out, it was recently announced that their joint charity, the Royal Foundation, is about to be split apart after 10 years.

William and Harry
Vanity Fair

Is William a Control Freak?

The Daily Mirror reported that William is frustrated he can no longer call all the shots with his baby brother. According to an anonymous tip, “William’s quite controlling, and he was in control when it was just the three of them, but now he’s not.”

The tipster doesn’t think Meghan is the Yoko in this situation–merely that she’s a savvy pro at handling PR thanks to her work as an actress. She’s able to advise Harry on public relations, and the pair have strong views about the kind of charity work they want to accomplish together.

It’s also rumored, however, that neither William nor Prince Philip thought Harry should have married Meghan. A new report from The Daily Mail suggests that Philip told Harry: “One steps out with actresses, one doesn’t marry them.”

Exiled to Africa?

Earlier this year, just before Archie was born, The Sunday Times suggested that William wanted Meghan and Harry out of the country! The story at the time was that the Cambridges weren’t pleased with the popularity of the Sussexes.

A “friend” told the newspaper, “In some ways it would suit William to get his brother out of the country for a few years and Meghan as far away as possible.”

Botswana was allegedly floated as an idea to put Harry and Meghan as far from the press as possible. Harry founded a charity there in 2006, and the couple visited the African country together on a romantic vacation.

Upstaged by the Junior Royals

The gist of these stories seems to be that William and Kate don’t want to be upstaged by the younger royals. According to The Sunday Times, “[t]hey are worried that Harry and Meghan are going to establish a totally separate enterprise that nobody can get under control. There are discussions in palace circles about how do we harness Harry and Meghan and this tremendous global attention they get.”

That worry tracks with the new report about Harry and Meghan leaving the Royal Foundation. As a source from inside the organization told Page Six, “It’s not an easy time right now at the foundation. … Everybody is massively stressed ahead of this meeting.”

We expect to hear an official announcement about the spit by the end of the month.

Going Their Separate Ways

It’s not necessarily a bad thing for Harry and Meghan to build up their own royal brand. They’ve already distanced themselves by setting up household in Frogmore Cottage, and Harry officially broke with the princes’ shared press office last year.

The Sussexes proved that they’re masters of social media, with their Instagram posts about Archie quickly racking up more likes than any other royal account. They’ll be fine on their own. However, rumors about a more personal rift between the brothers continue to linger. Does Kate feel threatened by Meghan’s popularity? Does Harry resent his family’s lack of support in his choice of wife? Or, are the darker rumors true about Harry’s disgust with William’s alleged affair with Rose Hanbury?

Given that Buckingham Palace is still a force to be reckoned with in the media, we’ll probably never get more than the official PR excuses for the split.