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Harry says stress of memories around Diana’s death is ‘wound that festers’

The Duke of Sussex added that he felt significant pressure being a member of the royal family in the spotlight.

Harry and Diana (PA)
Harry and Diana (PA)

By Jess Glass, PA

The Duke of Sussex has said the grief of the memories surrounding his mother’s death is “a wound that festers”, following a royal tour of southern Africa.

Ahead of a documentary detailing the duke and duchess’s 10-day tour last month, Harry said retracing his mother’s footsteps from her own tour more than two decades ago, had been “emotional”.

As Meghan and their son Archie stayed in South Africa, Harry visited Malawi, Botswana and Angola, where he highlighted his mother’s anti-landmine work.

In the documentary, Harry said that he felt significant pressure being a member of the royal family in the spotlight, and was particularly stressed by the memories of his mother’s relationship with the press.

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Diana and Harry (Martin Keene/PA)

Harry said: “I think probably a wound that festers.

“I think being part of this family, in this role, in this job, every single time I see a camera, every single time I hear a click, every single time I see a flash, it takes me straight back, so in that respect it’s the worst reminder of her life, as opposed to the best.

“Being here now, 22 years later, trying to finish what she started, will be incredibly emotional, but everything that I do reminds me of her.

“But as I said, with the role, with the job, and the sort of pressures that come with that, I get reminded of the bad stuff, unfortunately.”

During the tour, Harry visited Huambo, Angola, to an area where Diana famously walked through a cleared path in a minefield in 1997.

The images of her in body armour and a mask gave the anti-landmine campaign global recognition.

Harry visited the town to see the transformation of the area, which is now a residential street, and visited ongoing mine clearance work.

“It’s been quite emotional retracing my mother’s steps, 22 years on. Let’s finish what was started,” Harry said.

As the tour ended, the duke and duchess both brought separate legal actions against parts of the press, with Meghan suing the Mail on Sunday over a breach of privacy when it published a private letter between her and her estranged father.

Harry later filed his own proceedings at the High Court in relation to the alleged illegal interception of voicemail messages by Sun, News of the World and Daily Mirror journalists.

The documentary Harry & Meghan: An African Journey, will air on ITV on Sunday at 9pm.

PA

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