“The issue of substance is whether they attend the coronation, and, if they do, under what terms and conditions”, a source says.
“The family is split, and all the indications are that Harry is being advised to agree to nothing at this stage and play it long right up to the last minute, which is making negotiations with him very difficult.
“Harry’s camp made it clear that the idea that he would just attend the coronation and behave himself but then be stripped of his titles was a total non-starter.
“While he might decide at some point to discard his titles of his own volition, he objects to the idea of being forcibly stripped of them. He resents being lumped together with Andrew in the public mind as the two problem Princes when he considers the circumstances to be totally different”, the source added.
The Archbishop, who will officiate the coronation was asked to serve as an intermediary between William and Harry as far back as September, immediately after the Queen’s death. He is the first to crown a monarch since 1953, and admitted to having nightmares about the coronation going wrong.
“I think two nights ago, I dreamt we had got to the point of placing the crown on the King’s head and I had left the crown at Lambeth Palace.
“Now, how did I get the crown to Lambeth Palace since it’s guarded by half the Army? I’ve no idea. But I was looking around, and the King was looking at me. A nightmare. It’s obviously weighing on me quite a lot. It’s just an enormous honor and privilege and the coronation weekend is going to be a time of bringing the country together. To be part of that, of course it’s pressure, but it’s a huge honor”, the Archbishop stated.
And, in addition to the pressure of officiating the coronation, Welby has now been tasked with perhaps an even more complicated task, reaching an agreement suitable to both William and Harry for the latter to attend the coronation, and, hopefully in the process, promoting peace and healing in the brothers’ strained relationship.