Prince Charles and Prince Harry stood side by side as they watched the post-wedding fireworks fly over Windsor Castle.

He then asked: “Who’s paying all this?” Harry answered, “You’re paying for all this,” he said.

While it was not the typical father-son exchange, it was very common. Charles had a wonderful relationship with Harry.

Harry was warmly grateful for his quip on the high-end pyrotechnics’ cost. He also led the veil-covered Meghan along the final part of St George’s Chapel’s Chapel’s aisle, to his side.

Charles used to be generous with his endearments, calling his son ‘darling boy and ‘dear child’. What a tragedy that, just three-and-a-half years later, the father and his son were said to have lost their ability to communicate, and relations are at an all new low.

Harry’s bizarre weekend outburst where he stated he was raising concerns about a billionaire donor during the ‘cash-for-access’ controversy has only compounded matters. Charles was close to the incident and it was seen by Charles as an equally mischievous intervention than Harry’s criticizing of his father.

How tragic, then, that just three and a half years later, father and son are said to be barely on speaking terms, with relations between them at an all-time low, writes Richard Kay. Pictured: Prince Charles and Harry at Prince Philip's funeral

Richard Kay writes that it is quite tragic that father and son, just three years after their marriage, are now said to barely be able to speak and have relations at an all time low. Pictured at Prince Philip’s funeral: Prince Charles and Harry

He claimed that he was forced to leave the Royal Family to end the cycle of genetic pain and suffering for his children.

Criticising his father — and by implication the Queen — for the way he was raised is one thing. Charles is implicitly challenged by the broadside that he launched, in which he questioned the “motives” of Dr Mahfouz Marei Mubarak Bin Mahfouz. He also highlighted his own concerns about the Saudi businessman.

Such a rebuke — especially if it continues — could have an impact on the Prince as monarch as we edge closer to his reign. This week, Charles’ closest friends see the unravelling relationship between father-son as just as harmful as the one that exists between Prince and Princess Diana.

Charles himself is desperate not to exacerbate matters and, as always in matters concerning his children, is determined to avoid any confrontation. Pictured: Charles and Harry at the Natural History Museum in 2019

Charles is keen to not exacerbate the situation and is, like always with his children’s matters, determined to avoid confrontation. Picture: Charles and Harry, 2019 Natural History Museum

One close friend said that Harry’s outbursts are affecting the authority of some long-standing friends. “This is important, because the day when he will become King is no longer far away.

Charles is keen to not exacerbate the situation and is, like always with his children’s matters, determined to avoid confrontation. “He’s been hurt by certain things, but it is also fair to say that he’s been confused too.”

Harry’s statements about cutting ties to Dr Mahfouz (who is the subject of an investigation into donations his father’s charity), were liberally sprinkled in digs at Prince Charles.

We must go back to the year that the Duchess and Duke of Sussex were married. This will help us understand the extent of their problems. Charles, unlike William who, out of brotherly affection, had cautioned Harry to take things slow with Meghan, kept any anxieties that he might have to himself.

Unlike William, who out of brotherly love had offered some mild words of caution to Harry about taking things slowly with Meghan, Charles confined whatever anxieties he may have had to himself. Pictured: Charles and Harry in 1997

Charles kept his anxieties to himself, unlike William who, out of brotherly affection, had spoken a few words of caution to Harry regarding Meghan’s slow pace. Charles and Harry, 1997

Charles was struck by American actress Laura Linney’s willingness to learn royal protocol and invited her to a Palace exhibit to celebrate 50 years of his induction as Prince of Wales. After accepting the invitation she reportedly pulled out because television cameras were recording her event. Charles and Harry’s relationship began to alter.

Charles did not agree to Harry and Meghan asking for their own “court”, which would have granted them full freedom after the split with William and Kate.

The biggest impact on the father-son bond was caused by Megxit’s fallout and their move to the U.S.

But it was the fallout from Megxit and the couple's move to the U.S. which dealt the biggest blow to the bond between father and son. Pictured: Charles walks Meghan down the aisle at her wedding to Harry

However, it was Megxit and Megxit’s decision to move to America that caused the most damage to their bond. Pictured: Meghan is escorted down the aisle by Charles at Harry’s wedding.

Further friction was caused by the 2020 publication of Finding Freedom. Charles wanted to see if Harry was involved in the writing of Finding Freedom, according to sources. This led the Duke to wonder if Robert Jobson had assisted Harry in writing his book Charles At 70.

The situation only got worse after Harry and Meghan made claims to Oprah that they had received racist comments regarding their son Archie’s race. The consequences of those comments were still being felt last week, when Charles was accused in another book of being the royal figure who had first speculated about the future colour of Harry and Meghan’s children — a claim angrily dismissed by the Prince’s staff as ‘fiction’.

Charles wanted Harry to write down their plans for their American move. Harry later told the chat-show queen that he had ‘literally been cut off financially’, despite his father giving him some £2 million in the 2020-21 financial year.

A friend says that the man was upset by the notion that he was a tight-wad. He had not only paid an enormous amount to cover the wedding but also provided substantial money for them to become financially independent.

Ahead of their move to America, Charles had asked Harry to put their plans in writing. Pictured: Harry and Meghan speak to Oprah Winfrey

Charles wanted Harry to write down their plans for their American move before Harry did. Pictured: Harry & Meghan talk to Oprah Winfrey

A couple’s claims that Archie wasn’t entitled to a title were also causing irritation. An aide stated that this was false because Archie will receive a title automatically when his grandfather is King.

The last time they spoke was in April at the Duke’s funeral. They did not meet in July when Harry was in London for the unveiling of the Princess Diana statue at Kensington Palace, and Charles — along with the rest of the Royal Family — has still not met his six-month-old granddaughter Lilibet. Sources say that communication between father and son is’spasmodic, with only a handful phone calls over the last eight months.

Harry’s description of his royal life as a cross between the film The Truman Show — in which a man discovers he is living in a reality TV programme — and a zoo tested family ties as never before. He said of his father: ‘He treated me the way he was treated’ — a comment also widely seen as an attack on the Queen and Prince Philip.

Father and son last spoke face-to-face at the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral in April

Last time father and son spoke face to face at the funeral of Duke of Edinburgh in April

Despite such provocation, Charles — conscious of his own difficult relationship with his father — has been determined to maintain a dignified silence and wishes to leave the door open for his wayward son, whatever the price.

Harry admits that Harry has had a tough journey, since the time his mother passed away when Harry was twelve years old. He admits that there were some moments in his early years when they did not get along. Some royals were able to blame Charles at times, particularly when Harry went through his adolescent seizures that caused him to drink too much and take drugs.

They felt he was so preoccupied with his relationship with Camilla Parker Bowles that he didn’t devote enough time to his sons, especially Harry — always the more vulnerable and needy.

Charles looked almost like he had been written out of his script when the anniversary of Princess Diana’s death was being commemorated. His sons were lavishly paying tributes and praising their mother. Harry’s intervention provided some relief for Charles. His father was praised for his care of him and his brother after Diana’s passing.

He said, “One of the most difficult things for parents to have to do to their children is to inform them that their other parent has passed away.” But he was there. He was one of the two remaining. He did his best to protect us.

Friends of the royals knew that William wouldn’t have made this kind of honest observation. William, who was always more independent from Harry than Harry, modeled his life more closely after his grandmother than his father.

Curiously, though, in 2005, in the run-up to their father's marriage to Camilla, the brothers were publicly very supportive of their stepmother-to-be. But was that how they really felt about her?

Strangely, however, their brothers publicly supported their stepmother in 2005 as they waited for their father to marry Camilla. However, was this really their true feelings about her?

Strangely, however, their brothers publicly supported their stepmother in 2005 as they waited for their father to marry Camilla. However, was this really their true feelings about her?

It was expected that Camilla would turn 70 in 2017. However, nothing came of it.

Nearly nothing remains of Harry’s four-year-old Christmas episode on Radio 4 Today. Harry’s memoirs are due to hit shelves next year. The only thing we know for sure is that Harry has spent time researching his mother’s story and the bitter public separation she suffered from him.

With this in mind, reconciliation seems unlikely.

Next year, Harry's memoirs will hit the bookshelves. What little we do know is that he has been researching the life of his mother and her bitter public separation from his father. With that in mind, hopes of reconciliation seem slight

Harry’s memoirs are due to be published next year. The only thing we know for certain is that Harry has spent time researching his mother’s story and the bitter separation she suffered from him. In this light, it seems that reconciliation is unlikely.