"The Duke of Sussex was still in the air and out of contact," Robert Hardman wrote in his new book, Charles III: New King. New Court. The Inside Story." "In his memoir, Spare, he suggests that no one had told him and that he was reduced to learning the news from the BBC website as the plane was landing. Not exactly."
"A member of the Palace staff says that the King had been urgently trying to make contact with his younger son. 'There were repeated attempts to get through to him, but no calls were going through because Harry was airborne,' says the official," Hardman added.
Reportedly, the new monarch began trying to contact Harry just as soon as he handled affairs related to his accession to the throne and contacted family members not far from Balmoral. The Duke of Sussex had to take his own chartered flight to the Northern Scotland estate after he was unable to get through to his brother, Prince William, earlier that morning.
Harry ended up arriving at Balmoral nearly five hours after Elizabeth II passed away, and all of his family and their spouses made it to the castle.
"When the plane started to descend, I saw my mobile phone light up. It was a message from Meg: 'call me as soon as you read this'. I checked the BBC webpage. My grandmother had died. My father was the King. I put on a black tie, and stepped off the plane into heavy drizzle," Harry wrote in his autobiography. There are also conflicting accounts of how the king-to-be twisted the truth to Harry when telling him that Meghan should not come to Balmoral that day.
In the tome, Hardman recounts how royal sources shared with him that the king-to-be decided to tell his youngest son that Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, was being kept away from the ailing monarch's deathbed since the Queen did not want numerous people surrounding her.
The real truth was that Kate had told Prince Charles she would stay behind in England to look after her children, while Prince William took an immediate flight to the Scottish Highlands. Charles took the opportunity to twist this information to "prevent a feud" with Harry to show that it would be wise for Meghan to stay away as well since the monarch's other daughter-in-law was doing the same.
It is implied that nobody wanted the Duchess of Sussex at Balmoral Castle, and Kate's wish to remain behind now gave an easy out to ensure that happened smoothly.
Daily Mirror reported on excerpts from Hardman's book.