Shirley Tart on the impact of Prince Harry revealing his struggle over his mother’s death.
In all my long career, I have never been anywhere more extraordinary than London during that week between the shocking death of Princess Diana and her funeral six days later.
People were wandering around the streets looking lost, displaced and often in tears.
Banks of flowers grew by the minute outside Kensington Palace, Buckingham Palace and any other likely monument while police trying to keep some control were being threatened by those in the depths of something approaching grief-induced hysteria if they dared to touch so much as a petal.
Meanwhile, as the week went on and the crowds grew by the hour, there were persistent demands for the Queen to come home and comfort her people.
The fact that Her Majesty was at Balmoral doing her best to comfort two shocked and bewildered little boys who had just been told that their mother was dead, was totally lost on those who believed her place was in London with the thousands gathered there and who believed their needs came first. When our stalwart Queen did return the day before the funeral, she and the Duke of Edinburgh, came out of the main gates of Buckingham Palace almost hidden under flowers. And we held our breath. Surely, the restless crowd would welcome her with affection and not a stony silence. Then someone in the crowd applauded quietly … and everyone followed.
Meanwhile, back in Scotland, two little boys were having to come to terms with the loss of their beloved mother.
Is it any wonder that they have struggled all these years since? And the nation should give thanks to and for Prince Harry who was just 12 at the time, has admitted that for all these years, he tried his best not to think about his mother, not to dwell on her death, and to move on with life.
Now, he has finally accepted that he couldn’t do it without help. So 20 years on, he asked for that help. And even more of a brave move for someone so in the public eye, he has now told the world. In so doing, Harry the Brave, has opened a massive door into dealing with mental health problems. Especially for young men and especially any so well known.
Harry, William and his wife Catherine have also set up the Heads Together charity which promotes good mental well-being.
We pray that Harry himself will finally find peace and comfort as he and William mark the 20th anniversary of their mother’s tragic death. I salute this young man who deserves all our support and thanks!Subscribe to our Newsletter