Prince Harry shares tribute to Prince Philip: 'He was a master of the barbecue and legend of banter'

Rebecca Taylor
·Royal Correspondent
·4-min read

Watch: Duke 'legend of the banter' - Prince Harry

Prince Harry has dubbed his grandfather Prince Philip the "master of the barbecue" as he paid tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh after arriving in the UK for his funeral.

Harry, 36, landed in the UK in time to attend the ceremony on Saturday but will have to spend most of his time in quarantine in Frogmore Cottage, his Windsor home.

In a statement shared just moments after his brother Prince William released his own thoughts, Harry said: "My grandfather was a man of service, honour and great humour. He was authentically himself, with a seriously sharp wit, and could hold the attention of any room due to his charm – and also because you never knew what he might say next.

"He will be remembered as the longest reigning consort to the Monarch, a decorated serviceman, a Prince and a Duke. But to me, like many of you who have lost a loved one or grandparent over the pain of this past year, he was my grandpa: master of the barbecue, legend of banter, and cheeky right 'til the end.

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - OCTOBER 31: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 48 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Prince Harry and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh attend the 2015 Rugby World Cup Final match between New Zealand and Australia at Twickenham Stadium on October 31, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Max Mumby/Pool/Indigo/Getty Images)
Prince Harry and Prince Philip at Twickenham Stadium in 2015. (Max Mumby/Pool/Indigo/Getty Images)

"He has been a rock for Her Majesty The Queen with unparalleled devotion, by her side for 73 years of marriage, and while I could go on, I know that right now he would say to all of us, beer in hand, ‘Oh do get on with it!’

"So, on that note, Grandpa, thank you for your service, your dedication to Granny, and for always being yourself. You will be sorely missed, but always remembered – by the nation and the world. Meghan, Archie, and I (as well as your future great-granddaughter) will always hold a special place for you in our hearts.

"'Per Mare, Per Terram.'"

Per Mare Per Terram means "By Land, By Sea" and is a slogan of the Royal Marines.

Watch: Prince Harry reveals Archie's first word and what the Queen got him for Christmas

The statement was sent by his US spokesman as it was confirmed Harry would follow COVID-19 protocols ahead of the 17 April, when Philip will be laid to rest.

Harry has been living in the US with his wife Meghan and son Archie since March 2020, but revealed that he had been keeping in touch with Philip and his grandmother the Queen via video calls.

In an interview with James Corden, he was asked if the Queen can use Zoom, to which he replied: "Both my grandparents do, we have Zoomed them a few times.

"They've seen Archie running around.

"But my grandfather instead of pressing 'leave meeting', he just goes 'doof'," he said miming closing a laptop.

Prince Harry (left) greets his grandparents, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh at the wedding of Lady Tamara Grosvenor to Edward van Cutsem at Chester Cathedral. Prince William will act as usher at the lavish service attended by 650 guests, including the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh. The wedding brings together two of Britain's wealthiest families. Lady Tamara Grosvenor, 24, is the eldest daughter of the Duke of Westminster, Britain's richest man, whose land holdings, including swathes of Mayfair and Belgravia, give him a personal fortune estimated at  4 billion.   (Photo by John Giles - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
Prince Harry greeting his grandparents the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh at the wedding of Lady Tamara Grosvenor in 2004. (John Giles – PA Images)

Prior to the statement on Monday, Harry and Meghan had paid tribute to Philip on the website of their foundation Archewell.

It was changed to show "In loving memory of the Duke of Edinburgh" and the dates 1921-2021.

The website also said: "Thank you for your service...You will be greatly missed."

The statement was added to the website after it was released.

Over the weekend, members of the Royal Family shared their tributes to the Duke of Edinburgh, with Prince Charles releasing an unscripted video message outside his home in Highgrove and Princess Anne choosing one of her favourite photos with her father, who she called her "teacher".

Prince William released a new photograph of the duke with his son Prince George that was taken by the Duchess of Cambridge in Norfolk in 2015.

He said he was grateful his wife had been able to know the duke for so long, and for the "kindness" he showed her, as well as the "infectious sense of adventure as well as his mischievous sense of humour" that princes George and Louis and Princess Charlotte were able to see in him. 

Watch: Harry ‘back in UK’ for Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral