GMB star claims Prince Philip was ‘heartbroken family turned into soap opera’

Prince Philip was reportedly left "heartbroken that the royal family has turned into a soap opera", close friend Gyles Brandreth has claimed.

The Celebrity Gogglebox star appeared on Thursday edition's of Good Morning Britain to discuss the latest headlines with hosts Ben Shephard and Susanna Reid.

It comes as the Queen marks what would have been her husband's 100th birthday by planting a rose at Windsor Castle.

The late Duke of Edinburgh, who died in April this year, also reportedly regretted that members of his family had given personal interviews.

Gyles was asked on the controversy surrounding Meghan Meghan and Prince Harry naming their daughter Lilibet after the Queen.

Presenter Ben, 46, wondered: "You know him and you were close to the Duke of Edinburgh. What do you think he would have made of all of this?"

Gyles replied: "I know exactly what he would have made of all of this. He was heartbroken, as he said to me, that the royal family has been turned into a soap opera and he regretted that very much indeed.

"He also regretted members of the royal family giving personal interviews.

"He felt [that] no good ever comes of it. I said to him, 'But you were the first member of the royal family to give an interview on television in the 1950s for the BBC and later to things like Wogan.'

"But he said, 'That was about what I did, my work, never about me as a person.'"

The broadcaster and writer continued: "He reminded me and said, 'You know, in 1953, you won't remember this, but after the Coronation, the Queen and I went to Australia on a tour. Millions of people came out and cheered the Queen, millions. And if the Queen had thought it was about her, it would have been corrosive.

"But the Queen is the same with one person or a million people. Once you begin to think it's about you, you are in trouble. Don't give interviews about yourself. It's about other people.' And that was his philosophy.

Ben asked: "Do you think he would have been upset about Meghan and Harry using the word Lilibet?"

Gyles responded: "I know what he would have said – 'I try to keep out of these things'. He wouldn't have commented, he wouldn't have known what he'd thought!"

Lilibet is Queen Elizabeth's favourite nickname while the baby has also been given a middle name paying tribute to Harry's beloved mum.

Her Majesty, 95, had reportedly already given her blessing for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to use the name for their daughter before she was born.

The Queen struggled to pronounce her own name, Elizabeth, when she was a young princess so resorted to saying 'Lillibet'.

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But it stuck, with dad King George VI and other members of the Royal Family affectionately calling her by the nickname for years after.

Harry and Meghan’s new baby daughter – the Queen’s 11th great-grandchild – will be known as Lili.

A variation on Lily, the flower is often seen to symbolise purity, commitment, rebirth and fertility.

Lili’s middle name Diana honours Harry’s later mother Diana, Princess of Wales.

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays at 6am

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