Relationships

Fri, 22 Feb, 2019Shannen Findlay

The sad reality of Prince Philip’s relationship with Prince Charles

The father-son relationship that has existed between Prince Philip and his first-born, Prince Charles, has always been strained, according to reports.

Prince Charles once described his father as “hectoring” and “harsh” and while his father might agree – Prince Philip has his own reasons behind their indifferences.

Their personalities are polar opposites and Prince Philip confirmed this, telling royal biographer Gyles Brandreth in 2016 that his son is a “romantic and I’m a pragmatist".

“That means we do see things differently. And because I don’t see things a romantic would, I’m unfeeling.”

Experts suggest the fractured relationship exists based on Prince Philip's absence in his son’s life at a young age.

Charles was only four when his mother ascended the throne and because of what the role required – she and Prince Philip spent a lot of time away from their eldest child.

Reports suggest the prince spent a lot of time with his grandmother, the Queen Mother, as Prince Philip was duly glued to the Queen’s side.

In a documentary, Prince Philip – A King Among Princes, royal correspondent Robert Johnson remarks that Prince Charles was a “handicap” to his father as he didn’t have any “serious role models when growing up".

“Maybe he always found Prince Charles slightly exasperating.

“And the fact that he wasn’t able to make more of a go of his marriage to Princess Diana was at least as much his son's fault as his daughter-in-law’s.”

Christopher Wilson, a royal biographer and journalist, claims a young and single Charles was desperate as pressure began to increase from his father to find a suitable partner. His now wife, Camilla Parker-Bowles, was married to another man, so the royal family urged him to move on.

“Charles was a desperate man, there was huge downward pressure on him from Prince Philip, from the Queen and the whole court to sort out his life, to stop running around and try and find someone,” Wilson explained to the Express.

After meeting Diana at Petworth House while attending a party – their romance begin to blossom and reportedly the pair were urged to wed by Prince Charles' father or move on.

The young prince however faced a tremendous amount of disappointment from his father, who expressed his concerns in a letter to Princess Diana.

The letter read: “I can only repeat what I have said before. If invited I will always do my utmost to help you and Charles to the best of my ability, but I am quite ready to concede that I have no talent as a marriage counsellor. 

“We don’t approve of either of you having affairs. Charles was silly to risk everything for Camilla for a man of his position.”

While Prince Charles and Prince Philip's relationship appears to be strong today, there is no doubt the father and son have faced trials. 

Scroll through the gallery above to see Prince Philip and Prince Charles together throughout the years.