Kensington Palace's gardener remembers Prince Harry playing as a child

Cheeky Prince Harry used to ‘terrorise’ Kensington Palace staff as a toddler and delighted in throwing stones into the Sunken Garden pond with Prince William, royal estate manager recalls

  • Graham Dillamore, is the gardens and estate manager at Kensington Palace
  • He fondly remembers seeing Prince William and Prince Harry in garden as kids
  • Says Prince Harry liked to throw stones in the pond and feed the fish   

Prince Harry used to delight in tearing through the gardens at Kensington Palace as a toddler, a royal estate manager has revealed. 

Graham Dillamore, who manages the gardens and estate of the iconic royal London residence, said on Channel 5’s Kensington Palace: Behind Closed Doors, that he remembered the two princes playing in the palace’s Sunken Garden as children.

He joked that William and Harry would come into the garden and ‘terrorise’ his staff, and that Harry would feed the pond’s fish and throw stones in the water. 

The Sunken Garden was a favourite of Princess Diana and will be where her commemorative statue is unveiled on July 1, on what would have been her 60th birthday. 

It is also where Prince Harry chose to announce his engagement to Meghan Markle in 2017. 

Kensington Palace’s gardens and estate manager Graham Dillamore said he remembered seeing Prince Harry and Prince William play around the Sunken Garden of Kensington Palace as children Pictured: Harry playing at home as a toddler 

Dillamore remembered seeing the princes play in the garden fondly, and said Princess Diana liked to job around the garden, and even tried to do some rollerblading once. Pictured: Prince Charles, Princess Diana, Prince Harry and Prince William at home when Harry was a toddler 

‘I’ll always remember meeting Princess Diana in the garden here,’ Graham said in the programme.

‘She always popped by, she would sometimes be on her jog. She tried rollerblading one but it didn’t work too well. 

He said he remembered seeing Prince William and Prince Harry in the gardens when they were very young.

‘The two boys were here, very little at that time, they would come out and terrorise us in the garden or throw stones in the pond,’ he joked. 

The Sunken Garden, pictured, holds a special place in the heart of Prince Harry who picked it to announce his engagement to Meghan Markle on November 27 2017

Nearly three decades later, Graham remembered the very special occasion of Prince Harry announcing his engagement to Meghan Markle in the garden.

‘Having seen Harry as a little toddler, and here he was with his new bride-to-be was a very special moment,’ he said. 

‘We have a lot of pressure on us to get the gardens looking great, but it was fantastic they chose the Sunken Garden as a location to make their announcement and have all the press photographs.’

The moment was deeply touching to Graham, who saw the two brothers, now 39 and 36, grow up on the Palace’s grounds.  

Graham revealed his memories of working for Princess Diana in Kensington Palace: behind closed doors, airing at 8pm on Channel 5 otonighy

‘Especially for some of us who remember Harry as a young child throwing stones or feeding fish,’ he said. 

‘And here he was, a great young man with a beautiful bride to be, announcing his engagement. 

‘You know, kids grow up, even royal kids.’ 

Diana and Charles moved to Kensington Palace in 1981, after their wedding, and she gave birth to Prince William a year later in 1982, with Harry joining the family two years later in 1984. 

Diana lived at Kensington Palace with her sons until her death on 31 August 1997. 

On July 1, to mark what would have been her 60th birthday, her two sons will come together to unveil a statue celebrating her legacy, which will be located in the Sunken Garden. 

It will be the first time Prince Harry and Prince William will see each other since Prince Philip’s funeral on April 17.    

Graham said it was ‘fantastic’ that Harry chose the Sunken Garden to announce his engagement, pictured 

Harry and William will make separate speeches as they pay tribute to their mother’s legacy.

They will also thank sculptor Ian Rank-Broadley for creating the statue, which has been in progress since 2017.

A royal source told the Mirror: ‘The Duchess has seen this project evolve from its conception and now to the finished article and undoubtedly wants to be there to support her husband.

‘No doubt there will be tensions between the Cambridges and Harry, but they all recognise that despite the obvious and deep rooted issues between them, they want the day to be solely about the Princess of Wales’s enduring legacy.’

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