Prince Harry

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For Princes of Wales called Henry, see Henry, Prince of Wales. For other princes called Henry or Harry, see Prince Henry.
Prince Harry
Prince Harry in the US.jpg
Prince Harry arriving at Capitol Hill on 9 May 2013
Full name
Henry Charles Albert David[fn 1]
House House of Windsor
Father Charles, Prince of Wales
Mother Diana, Princess of Wales
Born (1984-09-15) 15 September 1984 (age 29)
St Mary's Hospital, London, England
Religion Church of England

Prince Harry[1] (Henry Charles Albert David;[fn 1] formally styled Prince Henry of Wales; born 15 September 1984), known as Captain Harry Wales in his military role, is the younger son of Charles, Prince of Wales, and Diana, Princess of Wales. His paternal grandparents are Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. His stepmother is Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall. He stands fourth in line to succeed his grandmother as monarch of the Commonwealth realms, preceded by his father, elder brother Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, and nephew Prince George of Cambridge.

After an education at schools in the United Kingdom and spending parts of his gap year in Australia and Lesotho, Harry chose a military career, undergoing officer training at Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant into the Blues and Royals of the Household Cavalry Regiment, serving temporarily with his brother, and completed his training as a troop leader. In 2007–2008 he served for 77 days in Helmand, Afghanistan.[2] but he was pulled out following publication of the story in an Australian magazine.[3] He returned to Afghanistan for a 20-week deployment in 2012–2013 with the Army Air Corps.[4]

Early life[edit]

Harry was born at St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, London, England, on 15 September 1984.[5] He was baptised on 21 December 1984 at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Robert Runcie. His godparents were The Duke of York (his paternal uncle); Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones (his paternal cousin once removed); Lady Vestey; Mrs William Bartholomew; Bryan Organ; and Gerald Ward, a former officer in the Household Cavalry.[6][7]

Diana wanted Harry and his older brother William to have a broader range of experiences than previous royal children and took them to venues that ranged from Disney World and McDonald's to AIDS clinics and shelters for the homeless.[8] Harry began to accompany his parents on official visits at an early age; his first overseas royal tour was with his parents to Italy in 1985.[9]

Harry's parents divorced in 1996, and his mother died following a car accident in Paris the following year. Harry and William were staying with their father at Balmoral at the time, and the Prince of Wales told his sons about their mother's death.[10] At his mother's funeral, Harry, then 12, accompanied his father, brother, paternal grandfather, and maternal uncle, Earl Spencer in walking behind the funeral cortège from Kensington Palace to Westminster Abbey.[11]

Education[edit]

Chapel of Eton College

Like his father and brother, Harry was educated at independent schools. He started at Jane Mynors' nursery school and the pre-preparatory Wetherby School, both in London.[12] Following this, he attended Ludgrove School, and, after passing the entrance exams, was admitted to Eton College, where he studied geography, art history and art at A-Level. The decision to place Harry at Eton went against the Windsor family tradition of sending children to Gordonstoun (Harry's grandfather, father, two uncles, and two cousins all attended); it did make Harry follow in the Spencer family footsteps, as both Diana's father and brother had attended Eton.[8]

In June 2003, Harry completed his education at Eton with two A-Levels[13] (achieving a grade B in art and D in geography) having decided to drop history of art after AS level.[14] He excelled in sports, particularly polo and rugby union.[15] Passing two A-levels, Harry was eligible to apply for an officer commission in the British Army.[16]

After school, Harry took a gap year, during which he spent time in Australia, working (as his father had done in his youth) on a cattle station and participating in the Young England vs Young Australia Polo Test Match.[17] He also travelled to Lesotho, where he worked with orphaned children and produced the documentary film The Forgotten Kingdom.[8]

Military career[edit]

Officer Cadet Wales (standing to attention next to the horse) on parade at Sandhurst, 21 June 2005

Harry entered the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst on 8 May 2005, where he was known as Officer Cadet Wales, and joined the Alamein Company.[18] Within a year, in April 2006, Harry completed his officer training and was commissioned as a Cornet (second lieutenant) in the Blues and Royals, a regiment of the Household Cavalry in the British Army. He was given the service number 564673.[19] On 13 April 2008, when he reached two years' seniority, Harry was promoted to lieutenant.[20]

The British Ministry of Defence and Clarence House made a joint announcement on 22 February 2007 that Harry would be deployed with his regiment to Iraq, as part of the 1st Mechanised Brigade of the 3rd Mechanised Division – a move supported by Harry, who had stated that he would leave the army if he was told to remain in safety while his regiment went to war;[21] he said: "There's no way I'm going to put myself through Sandhurst and then sit on my arse back home while my boys are out fighting for their country."[22] The head of the British army at the time, General Sir Richard Dannatt, first said on 30 April 2007 that he had personally decided that Harry would serve with his unit in Iraq,[23] and Harry was scheduled for deployment in May or June 2007, to patrol the Maysan Province.[24] By 16 May, however, Dannatt announced that Prince Harry would not serve in Iraq;[25] concerns included Harry being a high-value target (as several threats by various groups had already been made against him) and the dangers the soldiers around him would face should any attempt be made on Harry's life or capture. Clarence House made public Harry's disappointment with the decision, though he said he would abide by it.[26]

Harry Wales
Birth name Henry Albert Charles David
Service/branch  British Army
Years of service 2005–present
Rank Captain
Unit Blues and Royals
662 Squadron, 3 Regiment, Army Air Corps
Battles/wars

War in Afghanistan

It was reported in early June 2007 that Harry had arrived in Canada to train alongside soldiers of the Canadian Forces and British Army, at CFB Suffield, near Medicine Hat, Alberta. It was said that this was in preparation for a tour of duty in Afghanistan, where Canadian and British forces were participating in the NATO-led Afghan War;[27] rumours that were confirmed in February the following year, when the British Ministry of Defence revealed that Harry had secretly been deployed as a Forward Air Controller to Helmand Province in Afghanistan.[28] The revelation came after the media – notably, the German newspaper Bild and Australian magazine New Idea[29][not in citation given][30] – breached the blackout placed over the information by the Canadian and British authorities. It was later reported that, while in Afghanistan, Harry had helped Gurkha troops repel an attack from Taliban insurgents,[31][not in citation given] and performed patrol duty in hostile areas.[32][not in citation given] His tour made Harry the first member of the Royal Family to serve in a war zone since his uncle, Prince Andrew, flew helicopters during the Falklands War. For his service, Harry was presented with an Operational Service Medal for Afghanistan by his aunt, Princess Anne, at the Combermere Barracks in May 2008.[33]

In October 2008, it was announced that Harry was to follow his brother, father and uncle in learning to fly military helicopters. After passing the initial aptitude test, he was to undertake a month-long course; if he passed that, he would begin full flight training in early 2009.[34] Harry had to pass his flying assessment at the Army Air Corps Base (AAC), Middle Wallop, the result of which determined if he would pass on to train as a pilot of the Apache, Lynx, or Gazelle helicopter.[35] Having reached the requisite standard, Harry attended the Defence Helicopter Flying School at RAF Shawbury, where he joined brother William.[36]

Captain Wales talks to an injured soldier at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 15 May 2013

Harry was presented with his flying brevet (wings) by his father on 7 May 2010 at a ceremony at the Army Air Corps Base (AAC), Middle Wallop. Harry had let it be known that he intended to fly Apache attack helicopters if he was successful in passing the rigorous Apache training course, after which time it could be possible for him to see active military service once again on the frontline in Afghanistan.[37] During the ceremony, he switched his Blues and Royals' Officer's Service Dress cap for that of the Army Air Corps' sky blue beret with a Blues and Royals badge.

On 10 March 2011, it was revealed that Harry had passed his Apache flying test and he was awarded his Apache Flying Badge on 14 April 2011.[citation needed] There was speculation that he would return to Afghanistan before the withdrawal in 2015. On 16 April 2011, it was announced that Harry had been promoted to captain.[38]

In June 2011, Clarence House announced that on completion of his training conversion course to use Apache helicopters in the war arena, Harry would be available for deployment, including in current operations in Afghanistan, as an Apache helicopter pilot.[citation needed] The final decision will ultimately rest with the Ministry of Defence's senior commanders, including principally the Chief of the Defence Staff in consultation with the wishes of Harry, the Prince of Wales and the Queen.[39] In October, Harry was transferred to a US military base in California to complete his helicopter gunship training. This final phase will include live-fire training and "environmental and judgment training" at naval and air force facilities in California and Arizona. The majority of those completing the two-month Apache training are deployed to the front lines in Afghanistan.[40] In the same month, it was reported that Harry was said to be a natural pilot who was top of his class in the extensive training he had undertaken at the Naval Air Facility, El Centro, California.[41] On November 2011, Harry returned to England. He went to Wattisham Flying Station in Suffolk, in the east of England, to complete his training to fly Apache helicopters.[42]

On 7 September 2012, he arrived at Camp Bastion in southern Afghanistan as part of the 100-strong 662 Squadron, 3 Regiment, Army Air Corps,[43] to begin a four-month combat tour as a co-pilot and gunner for an Apache helicopter.[44] This was considered a particular honour as most pilots are required to sit in the "back seat" before being promoted to gunner. On 10 September, within days of arriving in Afghanistan, it was reported that the Taliban threatened his life. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid spoke to Reuters and was quoted as saying; "We are using all our strength to get rid of him, either by killing or kidnapping," and "We have informed our commanders in Helmand to do whatever they can to eliminate him."[45][46]

It was announced on 21 January 2013 that Harry was returning from a 20-week deployment in Afghanistan,[4] where he served as an Apache co-pilot/gunner.

On 8 July 2013, the Ministry of Defence announced that Harry had successfully qualified as an Apache aircraft commander.[47]

On 17 January 2014, the Ministry of Defence announced that Harry had completed his attachment to 3 Regiment Army Air Corps and will take up a staff officer role at the position of SO3 (Defence Engagement) in HQ London District. His responsibilities will include helping to co-ordinate significant projects and commemorative events involving the Army in London. He will be based at Horse Guards in central London.[48]

On 6 March 2014, Prince Harry launched Invictus Games, a Paralympic-style sporting event for injured servicemen and women, will be held on 10–14 September 2014.[49] Prince Harry met British hopefuls for the Invictus Games at Tedworth House for the start of the selection process Invictus Games on 29 April 2014.[50] On 5 May 2014, Harry attended a ticket sale launch for Invictus Games at BT Tower, where he made a public tweet on the Invictus Games official Twitter account as the President of Invictus Games.[51]

Royal duties[edit]

Prince Harry speaking at the press launch for Walking with the Wounded, 1 March 2010

At the age of 21, Harry was appointed as a Counsellor of State and began his duties in that capacity when the Queen was attending the 2005 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Malta. The following year, Harry was in Lesotho to visit again Mants'ase Children's Home near Mohale's Hoek, which he first toured in 2004 and, along with Prince Seeiso of Lesotho, launched Sentebale: The Princes' Fund for Lesotho, a charity to aid children orphaned by HIV/AIDS. He has granted his patronage to organisations including WellChild, Dolen Cymru, and MapAction.[52] To aid Sentebale, and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund and Centrepoint, Harry and his brother organised the Concert for Diana at Wembley Stadium, on 1 July 2007.

Sport has been a way that Harry has helped charities and other organisations, such as training as a Rugby Development Officer for the Rugby Football Union in 2004 and coaching students in schools to encourage them to learn the sport. He has participated in polo matches, like his brother and father, to raise money for charitable causes.[17]

On 6 January 2009, the Queen granted Harry and William their own royal household. It has three main staff members, supported by a "small" team. Sir David Manning, the former British ambassador to Washington, is a part-time adviser to the princes. Previously, William and Harry's affairs had been handled by the office of their father at Clarence House in central London. The new household released a statement, complete with their own cyphers at the top, announcing that they have established their own office at nearby St James's Palace to look after their public, military and charitable activities.[53] Harry's cypher is similar to his brother's, but with an H in a shade of blue similar to that used by his mother. In September 2009, William and Harry set up The Foundation of Prince William and Prince Harry to enable the princes to take forward their charitable ambitions. The foundation is the culmination of the princes' charitable lives so far.[54][55][56]

Prince Harry at Trooping the Colour, June 2013

In March 2012, Harry led an official visit to Belize as part of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations.[57] He continued to the Bahamas and Jamaica, where the Prime Minister, Portia Simpson-Miller, is considering severing ties between Jamaica and the constitutional monarchy.[58] He next visited Brazil to attend the GREAT Campaign,[59] as an ambassador of the 2012 Olympics to the 2016 Rio Olympics. On 12 August 2012, Harry represented the Queen at the Closing Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games.[60]

From 9 to 15 May 2013, Harry was on an official visit to the United States. The tour promoted the rehabilitation of injured American and UK troops, publicised his own charities and supported British interests. It included engagements in Washington DC, Denver, New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. He watched the opening ceremony of the Warrior Games, in Colorado Springs, where injured servicemen and women competed, and met survivors of Hurricane Sandy in New Jersey.[61][62]

In October 2013, Prince Harry visited Australia for his first official visit to the country. Prince Harry attended the International Fleet Review at Sydney Harbour.[63] He also paid a visit to the Australian SAS HQ in Perth.[64] On his way back to UK, he attended a charity event for Sentebale at Dubai.[65]

In May 2014, Prince Harry visited Estonia and Italy. In Estonia he visited Freedom Square in the capital Tallinn to honour those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for their nation, and attended a reception at the Estonian Parliament,[66] and attended Nato military exercise there.[67] In Italy, Prince Harry attended commemorate the 70th anniversary of Monte Cassino battles for the Polish, Commonwealth and British troops.[68][69][70] Prince Harry also revealed the British Pavilion at Expo Milano 2015 in Rome at the MAXXI Museum.[71]

Prince Harry is patron of the following organisations:[72]

  • WellChild
  • Walking with the Wounded (2011 North Pole, 2012 Mount Everest, 2013 South Pole)
  • The Halo Trust's 25th Anniversary Appeal
  • London Marathon Charitable Trust
  • MapAction
  • Dolen Cymru
  • 100 Women in Hedge Funds' Philanthropic Initiatives
  • Rugby Football Union (Vice Patron)
  • Rugby Football Union Injured Players Foundation
  • Rugby Football Union All Schools Programme
  • School's Games (President)
  • Henry Van Straubenzee Memorial Fund (Joint Patron with his brother)
  • Sentebale (co-founded with Prince Seeiso of Lesotho)
  • The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry (co-founded with his brother)
  • Invictus Games (President of the Invictus Games)[73]

As part of the Walking With The Wounded - South Pole Allied Challenge 2013,[74] Harry became the first member of the royal family to reach the South Pole.[75][76]

Personal life[edit]

Prince Harry talking to an opponent during a volleyball competition between American and British injured soldiers, 13 May 2013

Harry enjoys playing many sporting activities, playing competitive polo, and skiing and motocross.[17] Prince Harry is a supporter of Arsenal Football Club.[77] Harry is also a keen Rugby Union fan, and supported England's bid to host the 2015 Rugby World Cup.[78]

Harry earned a reputation in his youth for being rebellious, leading the tabloid press to label him as a "wild child."[79] He was found at age 17 smoking cannabis and partaking in under-age drinking with his friends, clashing physically with paparazzi outside nightclubs,[79] and was photographed at Highgrove House at a "Colonial and Native" themed costume party wearing a Nazi German Afrika Korps uniform with a swastika armband.[80] He later issued a public statement apologising for his behaviour.[81]

In January 2009, the British tabloid News of the World revealed a video made by Harry three years earlier in which he referred to a Pakistani fellow officer cadet as "our little Paki friend" and later called a soldier wearing a cloth on his head a "raghead". These terms were described by David Cameron as "unacceptable",[82] and by The Daily Telegraph as "racist",[82] and a British Muslim youth organisation called Harry a "thug".[83] Clarence House immediately issued an apology from Harry, who stated that no malice was intended in his remarks.[84] A former British MP and Royal Marine, Rod Richards, said that such nicknames were common amongst military comrades, stating "in the Armed Forces people often used to call me Taffy. Others were called Yankie, Oz or Kiwi or whatever. I consider Paki as an abbreviation for Pakistani. I don't think on this occasion it was intended to be offensive."[85]

While on holiday in Las Vegas in August 2012, Harry and an unknown young woman were photographed naked in a Wynn Las Vegas hotel room, reportedly during a game of strip billiards. The pictures were leaked by American celebrity website TMZ on 21 August,[86] being reported worldwide by mainstream media on 22 August.[87][88][89] The photographs were shown by the American media, but British media were reluctant to publish them[90] – royal aides suggested that Clarence House may contact the Press Complaints Commission (PCC) if the pictures are used by British publications.[91] St James's Palace confirmed that Harry was in the photographs, said that he was essentially a victim of sexting in a private moment, and contacted the Press Complaints Commission upon hearing that a number of British newspapers were considering publishing the photographs.[92] On 24 August The Sun newspaper published photographs.[93]

Polls conducted in the United Kingdom in November 2012 showed Harry to be the third most popular member of the Royal Family, after William and the Queen.[94]

Rumours have persisted that Harry might be the son of James Hewitt, with whom his mother had an affair, but this has been refuted by Hewitt and others, who point out that Harry was born before the affair began.[fn 2]

Relationships[edit]

Chelsy Davy, the daughter of a South African businessman, was referred to as Harry's girlfriend in an interview conducted for his 21st birthday, and Harry said he "would love to tell everyone how amazing she is but once I start talking about that, I have left myself open...There is truth and there is lies and unfortunately I cannot get the truth across."[96] In early 2009, it was reported in the media that the pair had parted ways after knowing each other for five years.[97]

Harry was introduced to girlfriend Cressida Bonas, granddaughter of Edward Curzon, 6th Earl Howe, by his cousin Princess Eugenie in May 2012.[98] Bonas accompanied Harry to an official engagement for the first time in March 2014.[99] On 30 April 2014 it was announced that the couple had parted amicably.[100]

Titles, styles, honours and arms[edit]

Titles and styles[edit]

Prince Harry's monogram

Harry's full style and title is His Royal Highness Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales, but he is almost always called Prince Harry. As a British prince he uses the name of the area over which his father holds title, i.e., Wales, as a territorial suffix in lieu of surname. Past precedent is that such surnames are dropped from usage in adulthood, after which either title alone or Mountbatten-Windsor is used when necessary.[101] Harry continues to use Wales as his surname for military purposes and is known as Captain Harry Wales in such contexts.[102] Traditionally, sons of the reigning monarch and of the Prince of Wales receive a dukedom immediately prior to marriage, the most recent being Prince William, who became Duke of Cambridge.

Military ranks[edit]

Honours[edit]

Prince Harry wearing his medals, 9 May 2013

See also List of honours of the British Royal Family by country

Medals

Army Air Corps brevet.jpg
OSM for Afghanistan BAR.svg Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal ribbon.png QEII Diamond Jubilee Medal ribbon.png

Appointments[edit]

Fellowships

Honorary military appointments[edit]

Canada Canada
United Kingdom United Kingdom

Humanitarian awards[edit]

Harry has twice had his charitable efforts recognised by the international community. In December 2010, the German charity Ein Herz für Kinder ("Heart for Children") awarded him the Golden Heart Award, in recognition of his "charitable and humanitarian efforts".[107][108]

  • 19 December 2010: Golden Heart Award
  • 7 May 2012: Atlantic Council's Distinguished Humanitarian Leadership Award[109]

Arms[edit]

Arms of Prince Harry
Coat of Arms of Henry of Wales.svg
Notes
On his 18th birthday, Harry was granted his own personal coat of arms, consisting of the arms of the sovereign in right of the United Kingdom with a label for difference.
Adopted
15 September 2002
Escutcheon
Quarterly 1st and 4th gules three lions passant guardant in pale or armed and langed azure 2nd or a lion rampant gules armed and langued azure within a double tressure flory counterflory of the second 3rd azure a harp or stringed argent
Other elements
The whole differenced by a Label of five points Argent the first, third and fifth points charged with an Escallop Gules
Symbolism
As he is the grandchild of the sovereign, Harry's coat of arms has a label of five points. The escallops (seashells) allude to his mother Diana, Princess of Wales, whose Spencer coat of arms includes three escallops argent.

Ancestry[edit]

Harry is a male line descendant of Elimar I, Count of Oldenburg and a member of the House of Oldenburg, one of Europe's oldest royal houses, and the cadet branch known as the House of Glücksburg, founded by his paternal ancestor Friedrich Wilhelm, Duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg. His paternal grandmother issued letters patent on 8 February 1960 declaring Harry's future father to be a member of the United Kingdom's reigning House of Windsor and a bearer of its name. Their male line House of Oldenburg ancestors include five Danish kings — Christian I, Frederick I, Christian III, Christian IX - King George I of Greece, 11 counts of Oldenburg, two dukes of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg, five dukes of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Beck and one duke of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg.[110]

Among his other recent ancestors on his father's side are members of the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the House of Battenberg, the main line of the House of Hesse-Darmstadt, the House of Hesse-Kassel and the House of Hohenzollern.[110] Among his distant ancestors are Henry IV and James II and VII. Through his father's royal family, Harry is of German,[110] English and Scottish descent, and through his mother's family, the Earl Spencer and the Baron Fermoy families, of English descent and of remote German, Irish, Scottish and British-American descent.[111]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Prince Harry does not normally use a surname, but when one is required, it may be Mountbatten-Windsor. In his military career, Harry uses the surname Wales.
  2. ^ The rumours are supposedly based on a similarity of hair colour; however, red hair is a known Spencer family trait. Hewitt told the press in 2002, "There really is no possibility whatsoever that I am Harry's father. I can absolutely assure you that I am not…I can understand the interest but Harry was already walking by the time my relationship with Diana began. Admittedly the red hair is similar to mine and people say we look alike. I have never encouraged these comparisons and although I was with Diana for a long time I must state once and for all that I'm not Harry's father." This was corroborated by Diana's police bodyguard.[95]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]

Prince Harry
Born: 15 September 1984
Lines of succession
Preceded by
Prince George of Cambridge
Line of succession to the British throne
4th position
Succeeded by
The Duke of York
Orders of precedence in the United Kingdom
Preceded by
The Duke of Cambridge
Gentlemen
HRH Prince Harry
Succeeded by
Viscount Severn
Preceded by
The Earl of Wessex
Gentlemen
in current practice