Christmas won’t be the same without the two princes together.
A friend of the British royals recently claimed to Closer Weekly that Prince William will miss his younger brother Prince Harry for the Christmas festivities at Sandringham, their grandmother Queen Elizabeth II's estate. However, the pal insisted the 37-year-old believes the 35-year-old deserves some quality time with Meghan Markle and their son Archie.
“William and [his wife] Kate [Middleton] are somewhat relieved that they won’t be at Sandringham,” alleged the insider. “William does, however, feel that it’ll be strange not having his brother around.”
According to the outlet, Harry only missed one other Christmas with the British royals in 2012 when he was stationed in Afghanistan.
Harry is said to be looking forward to celebrating Archie’s first Christmas with the Markle, Duchess of Sussex, 38. The pal claimed Harry and Markle will likely split the next six weeks between England and Los Angeles where the former American actress’ mother, Doria Ragland, resides.
“Meghan misses her mom like crazy and can’t wait to spend quality time with her,” the friend told the magazine.
“Sandringham is always fun, but it can also be quite stressful and very formal,” added the pal. “This Christmas will be low-key and informal.”
A source previously told The Sun the royal parents “needed to recharge their batteries” during the holiday season.
“Christmas at Sandringham can be quite stressful, so perhaps they don’t want to go with Archie at such a young age,” royal biographer Ingrid Seward told the outlet. “Having said that, Sandringham has played host to many, many children through the ages and is well set up for them.”
In October, a palace source told the BBC that William was hoping his brother and Markle “are all right” and felt the duo “were in a fragile place” after the couple opened up about struggling with tabloid rumors and fierce media scrutiny in a tell-all documentary.
Kensington Palace had no comment concerning the couple speaking out to British journalist Tom Bradby for ITV’s documentary “Harry & Meghan: An African Journey,” which aimed to give audiences a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the couple’s recent royal tour of southern Africa.
But it was in that same documentary that Harry hinted at the ongoing rumored rift between him and his older brother.
“Inevitably stuff happens,” explained the British royal. “But we’re brothers, we’ll always be brothers. We’re certainly on different paths at the moment. I’ll always be there for him and as I know, he’ll always be there for me. We don’t see each other as much as we used to because we’re so busy, but I love him dearly.”
“The majority of stuff is created out of nothing,” added Harry. “As brothers, we have good days and we have bad days.”
“After the death of their mother, Princess Diana, in 1997, the two brothers were thrown together by the tragedy of their childhood,” he explained. “But it’s inevitable, as they grow up and develop different personalities, that synchronicity won’t apply anymore.”
The outlet noted that the queen, 93, has handed off many of her duties to her heir Prince Charles, their father, with William “sliding in behind him.”
Numerous sources have long insisted there were deep tensions between the brothers after Harry revealed to his family he wanted to marry the American actress after less than a year of dating. When William cautioned Harry that the whirlwind romance was moving too quickly, Harry reportedly became angry and hurt.
William dated Middleton, 37, for about eight years before tying the knot in 2011.
After previously working together, the royal couples split their offices and charitable endeavors last June. Markle and Harry’s office moved out of Kensington Palace and into Buckingham Palace, where the queen resides. Middleton and William’s office remains in Kensington Palace, where they live with their three children.
Meanwhile, Markle and Harry reside at Windsor Castle’s Frogmore Cottage with Archie.