Prince Harry Was Always Going to "Try and Break Free" From the Royal Family, Former Palace Pastry Chef Says

For Fiona Burton, it was written.

Prince Harry
(Image credit: Getty)

Whether he had met Meghan Markle or not, Prince Harry always had the desire to build a different kind of life for himself, a former Palace staff member has suggested.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex caused lots of drama when they decided to step down from their roles as senior royals in early 2020, but for former royal patisserie chef Fiona Burton, it was only a matter of time for Harry.

"I think it was always going to happen with Harry, to be honest," Burton, who worked in the royal kitchens around the year 2000, told Slingo (opens in new tab).

"He was always the one who would rebel growing up and in the tabloids. I do wonder if things were done on purpose and I wouldn’t know if that was true.

"It didn’t surprise me [when he left] because out of all of them he was going to be the one who would try and break free.

"I don’t think it’s got anything to do with who he has married.

"That’s him and he’s got a strong streak in him that has this independence and doesn’t want to be tied down to royalty, whereas his brother is completely different. William is more like his dad."

Commenting on Harry's more relaxed personality, Burton recalled, "He was the one who would laugh the most. He was a bit comical and always reminded me of his grandad."

The Sussexes stepped down from royal life in 2020, in what royal biographers Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand described as them "finding freedom," but it hasn't been all smooth-sailing since then.

The U.S.-based royal couple has seemed all but estranged from their British relatives, especially following their tell-all Oprah interview in 2021. Hopefully, they can all find a way to make it work for everyone, especially if it is in fact what Harry wanted all along.

Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Bustle and Shape. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.