Despite the brevity of his UK visit, Prince Harry reportedly made a quick trip to Buckingham Palace following the King’s Coronation. The Duke of Sussex was only there for half an hour, arriving and leaving before seeing the Royal Family.
It is understood that Harry travelled directly to Heathrow Airport while his family fulfilled public Coronation duties. The Duke’s visit was reported to be purely for logistical reasons, as it enabled him to be out of the public gaze momentarily after the two-hour service at Westminster Abbey.
Harry is not believed to have seen or spoken to his family, and did not feature in the official Coronation portraits. Palace sources emphasised that his lack of contact was purely for practical reasons as Harry was eager to get back to America as quickly as possible.
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The palace visit is said to have happened while the senior royals were occupied with the procession, taking the salute from the military and making a Palace balcony appearance, reports The Telegraph. He was spotted soon afterwards catching a 3:45pm flight to LAX at Heathrow Airport.
While the Duke was commonly a guest throughout Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, it is the first time he has returned to the palace since her funeral, despite visiting the UK earlier this year to attend his court cases.
During his 36-hour stay on British soil he resided at his former family home, Frogmore Cottage in Windsor.
Harry was collected from Frogmore by a black BMW just prior to 9:30am for the commute to Westminster Abbey.
The Duke reportedly assigned a Scotland Yard protections squad as his security. The Coronation was Harry’s first appearance with his family since his memoir Spare hit bookshelves in January.
He was sat in the third row for the service, seated two rows behind his brother and heir to the throne, the Prince of Wales.
He was seated beside his cousins Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie and their husbands, and was spotted informing them he was flying home “about quarter to four”, which reportedly prompted Jack Brooksbank’s response of: “So soon?”
For the service Harry donned a dark morning suit and tie, his Afghanistan and Jubilee medals pinned to his suit jacket, as well as a Royal Victorian Order star and neck decoration.
The Duke was still wearing his suit and medals upon his arrival at Heathrow for his return flight.
Harry hit the tarmac in LA on the afternoon of son’s fourth birthday, and is believed to have got back to his Montecito home in time for Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet’s bedtime.