Reports Prince Harry ‘open’ to return to temporary royal role met with harsh rebuke

Prince Harry has reportedly told friends he is willing to return to the UK in a temporary royal role after dashing to London earlier this month to see the King after his cancer diagnosis.

Four years after stepping away from royal duties and moving to California with his wife Meghan Markle and their two children, the 39-year-old Duke of Sussex is reportedly open to the idea of resuming official duties on behalf of the monarchy.

The King and Harry reportedly had several “warm ­exchanges” – including the highly publicised 30-minute private meeting at Clarence House on February 7 – according to an exclusive story in The Times.

“The duke is now understood to have told friends that he would step into a royal role while his father is unwell,” it wrote.

But a source told the paper: “There is a zero per cent chance Harry is coming back in any capacity.”

The Prince of Wales, whose rift with his younger brother continues, hosed down the idea immediately as William returns to official engagements after his wife Kate’s lengthy rehabilitation after planned abdominal surgery.

“ … it is absolutely and categorically clear that he (William) would not allow Harry to return … if anyone is going to take on more duties it will be William and that isn’t even on the agenda for now,” a source told the Mirror’s royal editor Russell Myers.

No way Palace will ‘re-royal’ Harry

Despite the King’s desire to mend the bridges between Harry and the royal family, many say revisiting a hybrid half-in half-out role for him is out of the question.

The Times’ royal source says the King wants Harry to step back into royal duties, given that it would “benefit the ­institution”.

“On all practical levels, it makes perfect sense for the family to come together to support the King while he’s sick,” the insider said.

“Much has been said on both sides in recent years, but that has never diminished the fundamental bond of blood, and there are now pragmatic aspects to consider, with the King and Kate’s wellbeing ­paramount in this,” the source said.

“The feeling is that this arrangement could work.”

Prince Harry with Meghan at the Invictus Games Vancouver Whistler 2025 launch. Photo: AAP

When Harry and Meghan announced their UK exit strategy in 2020 one suggestion from him was to balance his time between the UK and North America and to continue his royal duties.

On January 13, his immediate family, including the late Queen, gathered for what is now known as the Sandringham Summit where options for the Sussexes, including the “all in, no change” to “all out” were offered.

This ultimately led the couple to choosing to abandon royal life altogether, and pivot to multimillion-dollar deals with Netflix, book publishers (where Harry revealed private arguments between him and his brother in Spare) and the Oprah Winfrey interview in 2021 in which the pair accused the royal family of racism.

“William and his father [the King] are totally united on this. There is no way they are going to re-royal Harry after what he has said,” a friend of the royal family’s told US news outlet The Daily Beast.

“The King’s camp appear to have [been] briefed that the King is ‘firmly of the opinion’ there is no way back for Harry as a working royal ‘in any way, shape or form’.”

Last week, Harry spoke about his father’s health for the first time in an interview with Good Morning America‘s Will Reeve.

“I spoke to him. I jumped on a plane and went to go see him as soon as I could. Look, I love my family. The fact that I was able to get on a plane and go and see him and spend any time with him, I’m grateful for that.”

Adds Myers: “Harry is ready and willing to help and genuinely believes it would work well for both parties. In his view, it wouldn’t be dissimilar from what was proposed back in 2020, with a hybrid model of working.”

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