DAN WOOTTON: Prince William ‘ends his 20-year friendship’ with ITV’s Tom Bradby as he sides with brother Harry and becomes a ‘mouthpiece’ for his and Meghan’s ‘complaints about the Royals’
- The twenty-year friendship between Prince William and Tom Bradby is now over, senior royal sources say
- Duke of Cambridge has been left irritated that the high-profile presenter has sided with his brother Harry
- Communication between Duke of Sussex in California and Bradby in London has become common
- But in contrast, William would no longer trust the high-profile journalist who was once a confidant
They were once the most unlikely of close friends – a future King of England and the tenacious ITV journalist.
But the two-decade-long friendship between Prince William and Tom Bradby is now over, according to senior royal sources.
The Duke of Cambridge has been left exasperated that the high-profile presenter – host of ITV’s News at Ten – has sided with his brother Prince Harry and sister-in-law Meghan in the Windsors’ increasingly bitter transatlantic war.
While phone calls and communications between the Duke of Sussex in California and Bradby in London have become commonplace, William, on the other hand, would no longer trust the high-profile journalist who was once a confidant.
A royal insider revealed: ‘The friendship between William and Tom is completely over. The Duke feels abandoned by Bradby and the way he has acted in recent months.
The Duke of Cambridge was once so close to Tom Bradby that he was chosen to have the exclusive engagement interview with him and Kate Middleton in November 2010.
William is a sensitive soul and believes it is in times of crisis when you find out who your true friends are. It would be fair to say Bradby hasn’t been one of them. ‘
Anger is growing among senior royal aides at the way Bradby and ITV News seem to have become a mouthpiece for Harry and Meghan’s complaints about the royal family.
Bradby, 54, hosted an ITV documentary filmed in South Africa in 2019 when Meghan moaned in a swipe at her new family: ‘Not many people have asked if I’m okay. It is very real to go through behind the scenes… it has really been a battle. ‘
Harry also used Bradby’s documentary to publicly confirm a feud with his brother, admitting that he and William were “ on different paths ” at this point.
More recently, Bradby is believed to have played a central role in ITV being given the rights to air Oprah Winfrey’s inflammatory interview with the pair, where they threw a number of grenade-like allegations at the monarchy, including allegations that a senior royal made racist comments about the skin color of their future child.
Bradby staged an ITV documentary in South Africa in 2019, which Harry used to publicly confirm a feud with his brother
The royal source said: ‘Some of the palaces’ employees are even more angry about Bradby and the tone of his coverage on ITV News, which they consider pro Harry and Meghan.
Bradby is known to communicate in person with Harry on a regular basis and that’s pretty obvious to royal aides who know how things work.
“But it’s very hard to accept, given the long history between Bradby and William.”
William was once so close to Bradby that he was selected to conduct the exclusive November 2010 engagement interview with him and Kate. Bradby attended the wedding at Westminster Abbey as a guest.
A spokesman for William said at the time, “The couple requested that this interview be specifically recorded with Mr. Bradby, both of whom have known for a while.”
Bradby’s ITV documentary in South Africa in 2019 saw Meghan Markle also tell him: ‘Not many people have asked if I’m okay’
But Bradby was equally close to Harry, attending his Windsor wedding to Meghan, alongside other media figures including Oprah and James Corden.
Friendship with both brothers was cemented during Bradby’s time as ITV’s royal correspondent.
He traveled with Harry to Lesotho in Africa to make a 2004 documentary.
Bradby’s closeness to the brothers subsequently exploded into the public domain as part of the News of the World phone hacking scandal, when details of a phone call between him and a royal staff member were published in the Sunday newspaper.
Like Harry, Bradby has been publicly open about his mental health concerns, revealing that he had to take a long time off from hosting News at Ten in 2018 after suffering the “ mental health equivalent of a heart attack. ”
The Mail on Sunday revealed earlier this month that Bradby has “ significant influence ” on the way Meghan is more widely portrayed on ITV.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex speak to Oprah Winfrey in their bombshell tell-all interview that first aired March 7
They reported that he may have been involved in pointing the Duchess ‘in the right direction’ about how to complain about Piers Morgan’s criticism of her of Good Morning Britain, which led to him quitting the show.
A source told the newspaper: ‘Tom Bradby has a certain caché at ITV as a newsman. He’s also the man with the golden goose in the eyes of the bosses, as he has a hotline to Prince Harry. ‘
But don’t expect Bradby to get another interview with William.
Our royal source added: ‘The Duke will of course remain cordial and professional in his relationships with leading media figures, but that special relationship he once had with Bradby is gone. William no longer sees him as a friend. ‘
Kensington Palace declined to comment. An ITV News spokeswoman said: “Unfortunately, we are unable to comment at this time.”