Royal Breakup

Inside The Cressida And Harry Split

Stefan Wermuth/Reuters

Friends of Cressida Bonas today told the Royalist that the pressure of being constantly followed by photographers and journalists inquiring into her private life had pushed her to end her relationship with Prince Harry.

“She just got fed up with it," said one. “She and Harry are very fond of each other, but she wants to have her own life.”

The friend said that speculation about a reconciliation between the two was groundless, saying that Cressida had made up her mind that she did not want to live life inside the Royal fishbowl.

They also refuted suggestions made by People magazine that Harry had dumped Cressida for being “needy,” insisting the split was mutual and amicable.

Pressure on Cressida has been ramped up ever since she and Harry made a public appearance together at a youth event at Wembley Stadium, and were pictured kissing and cuddling as they sat together in the crowd.

Newspapers in the U.K. went into overdrive as they speculated about the likelihood of a fresh royal wedding.

Cressida became much more of a target for the media as a result of the public appearance by Harry’s side. Just this week, for example, Cressida was photographed by paparazzi as she purchased a juice at a London juice bar. The office in central London’s Soho district, where she works as a PA has been regularly staked out by paparazzi, as has the apartment she shares with friends.

It’s this kind of constant snooping that has driven the 25-year-old to split from Harry.

The news of the split caught the British media (and, I confess, the Royalist) on the hop, and was broken by the little known gossip Web site Showbiz Spy this week. As recently as last week, friends of the couple said the relationship was fine.

But it should be noted that friends have previously said that for all the speculation in the press about whether or not she and Harry would announce their engagement this year, Cressida had no plans and no desire to get married at such a young age. She was said to be wrestling with the knowledge that she would have to choose between a career as an actor and dancer or life in the Royal family.

A friend said at the time, “People talk to her about Harry and she gets quite cross and says, ‘I don’t want to get married yet.’”

Inge Solheim, the polar explorer who organized a controversial ski trip to a lavish Kazakhstani resort for Harry and Cressida in March, may inadvertently have given some hint of the trouble stirring in paradise when he said, “The pressure Cressida is under, dealing with this kind of publicity, is absolutely terrible for a young girl in love.”

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Harry and Prince William are thought to be heading to Memphis this weekend to attend the wedding of their close friend Guy Pelly. Pelly, who organized William’s stag do, is marrying American-born Lizzy Wilson.