In a week of rare moves for the Royal family, Prince William took the unusual stance to speak out publicly to defend the House of Windsor’s name and reputation while on a school visit.
Royal figures have become accustomed to ignoring the occasional question shouted to them by the media during visits, but such was the Duke of Cambridge’s feeling over allegations of racism in the monarchy the future king felt compelled to answer.
His response is the first public comment made in person by any member of the royal family since the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s shocking interview with Oprah Winfrey aired, which saw Prince Harry and Meghan lift the lid on their reasons for stepping away.
What was Prince William’s response?
As William and Kate Middleton came out of the school in east London and made their way through the playground, they were greeted by press who were taking pictures, videoing and one reporter decided to chance their arm by posing a question to the Prince.
The reporter asked “Is the royal family a racist family, sir?”, in which William replied: “We’re very much not a racist family” before continuing with his duties.
William’s response came after he was asked if he had spoken to his brother Harry since the interview, to which he replied: “No, I haven’t spoken to him yet, but I will do.”
What did Harry and Meghan say in the Oprah interview?
It has been a rocky few days for the Royals since the Oprah interview aired.
Among the revelations, Meghan and Harry accused an unnamed member of the family of raising concerns about how dark their unborn son Archie’s skin tone might be. During the interview, Harry said he was “shocked” and felt “awkward”.
While the Duchess described how she had reached out to the institution for help as her mental health steadily deteriorated to the point she was having suicidal thoughts, and that she was scared to be alone without the Duke by her side.
What has the Queen said in response to Harry and Meghan’s claims?
A Buckingham Palace statement was issued on behalf of the Queen in which she was “saddened” to hear of Harry and Meghan’s experiences in the Royal family.
It read: “The whole family is saddened to learn the full extent of how challenging the last few years have been for Harry and Meghan.
“The issues raised, particularly that of race, are concerning.
“While some recollections may vary, they are taken very seriously and will be addressed by the family privately. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved family members.”
What does the future hold for William and Harry?
It seems very likely that the brothers will speak again at some point, but when that will be is anyone’s guess as Harry suggested “space” was needed at the moment.
When Oprah asked about William, Harry said: “The relationship is space at the moment. And time heals all things, hopefully.”
“I love William to bits, he’s my brother, we’ve been through hell together, we have a shared experience, but we were on different paths.”
William and Harry were expected to come together to unveil a statue they had commissioned of their mother on what would have been her 60th birthday on 1 July 2021.
But in the wake of the Oprah interview it remains unclear if that arrangement will be fulfilled.