Diana would be heartbroken – she’d never want the boys to fall out, says Paul Burrell

As we all eagerly anticipate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebration this weekend, there’s one person who will be paying particularly close attention to proceedings.

Having been the butler and "best friend" of Diana, Princess of Wales for 10 years up until her death in 1997, Paul Burrell tells OK! he’s especially interested in how things pan out between the Duke of Cambridge and the Duke of Sussex, who are rumoured to have been somewhat estranged since Harry departed for America with his wife, Meghan Markle and their son Archie, three and 11-month-old daughter, Lilibet.

As Diana’s close confidante and "rock", what does Paul think she would make of the apparent rift between Diana's beloved sons? "She’d be heartbroken. It wouldn’t have got as bad as this if she was still here," he tells us. "She’d have banged their heads together.

"She’s probably the only person that could have done that. If Diana had been here [the rift] would never have happened."

Paul talks about how strong the bond was between Prince William and Prince Harry growing up, saying, "It’s incomprehensible to think about the boys being so distanced. I cannot get my head around it.

"I saw those boys grow up and they were tighter than you can possibly believe. They referred to each other about everything.

"When Diana died I thought they would be inseparable."


Paul, 63, who lives in Cheshire with his husband of five years, Graham Cooper, also revealed that he isn’t convinced of Prince Harry's happiness in the States.

"Trying to resurrect his life by playing polo in Santa Barbara isn’t going to cut the mustard," he says. "It’s not the Guards Polo Club at Windsor where everyone he went to school with plays polo.

"What mates is he going to find in California? He’s not grown up there with anyone."

Paul predicts that at some point Harry will return to the UK and be reconciled with William.


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"Harry’s going to need his brother one day. I think he will come back to this country with his tail between his legs. His brother will put his arms around him and say, ‘Welcome home, Harry.’

"I don’t think he’s totally happy. I think he’s missing his brother, I really do. I think he’s missing his family, I think he’s missing his friends and the lifestyle he had here in England. I think he’s given everything up for Meghan and I don’t know how long he’s going to be able to live that life."

Paul, who spent a lot of time with the boys when they were small, says that despite being a more “measured” character, William will be just as cut up about the brothers’ estrangement as Harry is.

"He must think of Harry every single day. He’s his brother, he’s made of the same stuff. And they went through the same turmoil and tragedy. They only had each other to rely on really."

And he thinks Kate – who joined her husband at a Buckingham Palace garden party last week – is the "mediator who could bring Harry and William together again".

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