Prince Harry’s new memoir Spare has hit the headlines in recent weeks as he delves into a number of controversial topics ranging from the death of his mother Princess Diana to his ongoing feud with brother Prince William.
Harry’s book features a range of different revelations from his royal life, however the credibility of the memoir has been put under the microscope after his whereabouts at the time of the death of his great grandmother was questioned.
During the memoir, the Duke of Sussex opens up about the death of Queen Elizabeth II’s mum, Elizabeth the Queen Mother who died in March 2002 at the age of 101.
Harry reveals in painstaking detail during the book that he was alerted to her death over the phone whilst studying at Eton. He writes: “At Eton, while studying, I took the call. I wish I could remember whose voice it was at the other end; a courtier’s I believe. I recall that it was just before Easter, the weather was bright and warm, light slanting through my window, filled with vivid colours.”
However, several reports have since rebuked these claims, stating that the Duke was in fact on a skiing trip in Switzerland at the time of her death.
The alleged inconsistency in Harry’s recollection has led to many questioning the credibility of the book. But where was Harry at the time of the Queen Mother’s death and how have people reacted to the revelations?
Here is everything you need to know.
Where was Prince Harry when the Queen Mother died?
Prince Harry claims during his book Spare that he was at Eton boarding school at the time of the Queen Mother’s death, however these claims have since been questioned.
Several reports from the time show photographic evidence of Harry visiting a ski resort in Klosters, Switzerland at the time of the Queen Mother’s death. During the visit Harry is accompanied by his brother Prince William, heir to the throne and his father King Charles III.
Photographic evidence also shows Harry and his family returning to the UK a day after the passing of Elizabeth, the Queen Mother.
How have people reacted?
A number of people have taken to social media to question the contradictions of Prince Harry’s new memoir.
Richard Palmer of the Daily Express tweeted: “Many of Prince Harry’s claims in Spare are difficult to check without any evidence but there are other straightforward mistakes that cast doubt on its reliability.”
Another user tweeted: “Harry can’t even remember where he was when the Queen Mother died, so his recollections are not to be trusted. And he has an agenda, so there’s a lack of impartiality.”
Who was the Queen Mother?
Elizabeth Angela Marguerite Bowes-Lyon was Queen of the United Kingdom from 1936 to 1952 as wife to King George Vi.
She is the mother to Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Margaret and following her husband’s death her title became Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother to avoid any confusion with her daughter.
Elizabeth was born on 4 August 1900 and came to prominence in 1923 when she married the Duke of York King George V. At the time the couple never expected to reign on the throne and Edward VIII was the next in line.
Elizabeth’s husband unexpectedly became king when his brother Edward VIII abdicated in order to marry American divorcee Wallis Simpson.
Elizabeth acted as Queen Consort until her husband’s death in 1952 when she became widowed.
The Queen Mother then became a matriarch figure within the royal family and acted as a trusted advisor to her daughter. The Queen Mother continued to be a prominent public figure until her death in 2002.