Prince Harry wanted to bring up his son Archie, three, in Africa ‘running barefoot with African children’, friend and zoologist Dame Jane Goodall reveals
The Duchess of Sussex has said she’s happy to be back in her native California, but Prince Harry would rather have moved to a different continent.
His friend, the celebrated primatologist Dame Jane Goodall, has revealed that he wanted the couple to live in Africa, where he has spent some of the happiest times in his life.
‘He wanted to bring Archie up in Africa, running barefoot with African children,’ she says of their three-year-old son. He and Meghan also have a daughter, Lilibet, aged 17 months. Read more here on The Mail+.
It wasn’t just an idle hope. In 2019, the Sunday Times disclosed that courtiers had drawn up plans to hand the Duke and Duchess of Sussex a major international job that could have seen them moving abroad after the birth of their first child.
RICHARD EDEN: Prince Harry’s friend, the celebrated primatologist Dame Jane Goodall, has revealed that he wanted the couple to live in Africa, where he has spent some of the happiest times in his life (Prince Harry, Meghan and Archie pictured in Cape Town in 2019)
Prince Harry’s advisers were said to be working on a ‘bespoke’ role for the couple, probably in Africa (picture is Meghan and Harry in Johannesburg in 2019)
Prince Harry’s advisers were said to be working on a ‘bespoke’ role for the couple, probably in Africa, that would combine some work on behalf of the Commonwealth along with charity work and a role promoting Britain.
The plan had been drawn up by Sir David Manning, the former British ambassador to the U.S. and special adviser on constitutional and international affairs to Harry and Prince William.
Of course, the plan was never put into action and the couple moved to North America before quitting royal duties.
Had they moved to Africa, it could have made it more difficult for the Sussexes to sign lucrative deals with American companies such as Netflix, Spotify and BetterUp.
Harry has a deep love of the continent and visited many times. His ex-girlfriend Chelsy Davy is from Zimbabwe and he established a charity to help African orphans, Sentebale, with Prince Seeiso of Lesotho.
Dame Jane was previously interviewed by the Duke of Sussex for the edition of British Vogue edited by his wife in 2019
Meghan also feels an affinity to Africa, telling Nigerian-American comedian Ziwe Fumudoh on her Archetypes podcast last month that genealogy tests had found her ancestry was 43 per cent Nigerian.
The former actress’s mother, Doria Ragland, is African-American and her father, Thomas Markle, is of Dutch-Irish descent.
Dame Jane was previously interviewed by the Duke of Sussex for the edition of British Vogue edited by his wife in 2019. In it, she spoke warmly of meeting and cuddling Archie.
In her latest comments, she says of the Montecito-based couple: ‘I don’t talk about them now. Of course, I have my views, and I think Harry cares, I really think he does. My times that I talked with him I just felt that he was a really nice, good person.’
The naturalist, who’s regarded as the world’s foremost expert on chimpanzees, may be reluctant to say more about her royal friends after the furore caused by the Vogue chat.
The naturalist, who’s regarded as the world’s foremost expert on chimpanzees, may be reluctant to say more about her royal friends after the furore caused by the Vogue chat (pictured hugging Prince Harry in 2019)
In it, Harry made a comment about the number of children he wanted that was interpreted as a dig at Prince William and Catherine, who have three.
Talking of saving the planet for future generations, Harry said: ‘I’ve always had a connection and a love for nature. I view it differently now, without question. But I’ve always wanted to try to ensure that, even before having a child and hoping to have children.’
Dame Jane asked: ‘Not too many?’ He replied: ‘Two, maximum.’
In the new interview, with The Times, Dame Jane lets slip that Harry’s not her only royal admirer. ‘I talked with the late Duke of Edinburgh a couple of times,’ she says. ‘He was fun.’
And King Charles? ‘He keeps inviting me down to his farm [at Highgrove, Gloucestershire] but I’ve never been able to go. Now that he’s King, who knows?’
Read Richard Eden’s sparkling social diary, Eden Confidential, in full on Mail+ tomorrow.
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