William’s fury over Harry’s parting shot at the Queen
Prince William was reportedly left furious and saddened by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's subtle dig at the Queen, believing the couples' final statement upon fully breaking with the royal family was "insulting, disrespectful and petulant".
According to a report in London's Sunday Times, Prince William has been "shocked and saddened" at his brother's behaviour towards the Queen - after Prince Harry and Meghan were stripped of their royal patronages and the monarch suggested a "life of public service" is not compatible with the couple's new life and lucrative careers in the US.
Other members of the royal family were said to be equally upset by the tone of the pair's response - released just minutes after the Queen's announcement - in which they bit back that "service is universal".
The new stoush has further strained the brothers' already brittle relationship, with reports out of the UK claiming it is the most serious royal rift in decades.
As Prince Charles on Saturday (local time) made a 320km dash to see his ill father in a London hospital, it was also claimed that billionaire chat show host Oprah Winfrey spent two days with the Sussexes last week filming their prime-time interview.
Prince William has reportedly struggled to accept Prince Harry's departure from official royal duties, feeling the couple's departure from official duties and the UK puts added pressure on him.
Royal sources reportedly told The Sunday Times sources that Prince William believed the Sussexes statement was "petulant and insulting to the Queen" and he was left "sad and genuinely shocked" and is "very upset by what has happened".
Other royal sources told the outlet: "Don't disrespect your granny, Harry" and "You don't answer the Queen back - it's just not done."
QUEEN TO BE JUDGED 'HARSHLY' FOR MEGXIT
It was known and expected, but when it finally came not even the royal couple would have anticipated the bluntness and finality of the message.
"This is the decree absolute," royal writer Penny Junor said of Buckingham Palace's proclamation stripping Prince Harry and Meghan of their royal patronages and honorary military roles.
"People lose things in a divorce. They lose pets, they lose houses, they lose children, and there was no way this was going to end well."
And it hasn't.
The former royal couple in self-exile in California has given what has been described as "a two fingered salute" to the royal family for its announcement last week completing the so-called Megxit, and formally cutting ties with the couple.
And ironically the British public that the couple felt was never on their side have actually expressed disappointment and sadness to formally farewell the pair or at least say bye to Prince Harry.
The public have expressed lament in TV vox pops to the sad if not unexpected farewell while the British media have described it as revenge for the embarrassment caused. For their part the Sussexes issued a bitter-laced statement.
"As evidenced by their work over the past year, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex remain committed to their duty and service to the UK and around the world, and have offered their continued support to the organisations they have represented regardless of an official role," a spokesman for the couple said.
"We can all live a life of service. Service is universal," a spokesman for the couple said.
The couple was said to be disappointed by the finality of the statement, which it has been speculated came after the couple last week agreed to do a tell-all interview on Oprah Winfrey and CBS to air later next month.
Royal commentator Peter Hunt told London's LBC radio that history would judge the Queen poorly for her decision not to allow Prince Harry and Meghan to continue with the responsibilities and duties, albeit from afar.
"My feeling is that where we stand now is actually that history will come to judge the Queen poorly for this decision," he said.
"This is a family decision. This is a decision by a monarch about a grandson. He is her grandson and he is the son of a future king, and a compromise could have been concocted."
Mr Hunt said palace rules could have been rewritten given the unique of the situation but the palace chose not to.
"I think Harry will be feeling very sad and possibly slightly bitter today."
Last Friday the Queen through Buckingham Palace confirmed formally in a statement the couple would not "continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service" but added they "remain much loved members of the family".
Much has been made in the UK of the timing of the statement that while there was always to be a year to review the Sussexes' stepping back from royal duty, as they chose to do last March when they left to start a life in the United States, to make the statement early and while Prince Harry's beloved grandfather Prince Philip was in hospital was not foreseen.
A particularly bitter blow to Prince Harry will be the loss of his honorary Captain Generalcy of the Royal Marines which was handed to him by Prince Philip with the words "don't cock it up".
But that is what he did.
Over the past few days the patronages and military units formally thanked the couple for their "work" as patrons and wished them well for the future.
Among them the Queen's Commonwealth Trust, founded in 2018, of which the duke and duchess were president and vice-president respectively said the global work would go on.
"The Queen's Commonwealth Trust exists to support young people around the world who are delivering practical help to those who need it most. We have been very lucky to have had the keen support and encouragement of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in our formative years."
Harry also lost his patronage to the Rugby football League and the Rugby football Union.
The Invictus Games Foundation however confirmed Prince Harry would remain as its patron as did veterans group walking with the Wounded.
"The Invictus Games was founded by him, it has been built on his ideas and he remains fully committed to both the games and to the Invictus Games Foundation," the Invictus foundation said.
Smart Works, a charity helping women back into employment by offering them smart clothes and interview coaching, revealed Meghan would also continue to work with them.
Prince Harry 36, and Meghan, 39, moved with their son Archie to Southern California to live a more independent life and escape the British media. They announced on February 14 that they were expecting their second child.
Originally published as William's fury over Harry's parting shot at the Queen