Prince Philip asked Charles to bedside to ‘discuss future’
Prince Philip asked Prince Charles to come to his hospital bedside to discuss the future of the Royal Family, according to the Queen's former press secretary.
Dickie Arbiter said the Duke of Edinburgh would have 'requested' his eldest son's presence at the King Edward VII Hospital in London last weekend.
Prince Charles was seen driving away from the hospital after his visit with tears in his eyes.
Mr Arbiter, who was the Queen's press secretary from 1988 to 2000, told True Royalty TV's The Royal Beat that Prince Philip was probably worried about the future of the Royal Family.
Mr Arbiter said: "I think it was at the request of the Duke that the Prince of Wales visited.
To lay the ground: Look, the man is 99, he is in with an infection. My guess is that he will come out, he will walk out and he will go back to Windsor.
But eventually he is going to die and he was just saying to Charles, 'One day you are going to be the leading man of the family'."
It comes as Prince Philip spent his second weekend in hospital in what has become his longest ever stay as he battles an infection.
The Duke of Edinburgh, 99, is at King Edward VII Hospital in London.
Queen Elizabeth II is said to be "distraught" over her husband's hospitalisation, which came during a particularly challenging time for the royal family.
The Queen has also been coming to terms with the fact that her grandson, Prince Harry, and his wife Meghan Markle will not be returning as working members of the British royal family.
"It's been a rough few weeks for the queen, that's for sure," a royal source told Us Weekly.
"The situation with Harry and Meghan has been challenging, and on top of that, she's distraught over her beloved husband's health setback."
"The queen has had some tearful moments mixed with anger and disappointment," another palace insider alleged to Us Weekly. "Emotions are definitely running high."
Meantime, hospital officials did not reveal further details of the Duke of Edinburgh's condition but said he was "comfortable and responding to treatment".
It was the first update on Prince Philip since royal aides announced that the Duke had been admitted to the private hospital last week for "observation and rest" after "feeling unwell".
On Tuesday, Prince Edward gave a personal insight into his father's condition saying the Duke was sick of looking at hospital walls and wanted to get home, as his youngest son revealed the family has their "fingers crossed".
Prince Edward, 56, was the latest royal to play down Prince Philip's illness, after Prince William insisted he was "OK" earlier this week.
"He's a lot better, thank you very much indeed, and he's looking forward to getting out, which is the most positive thing, so we keep our fingers crossed," Prince Edward told Sky News UK.
Prince Edward, who has spoken to his father on the phone, laughed when he was asked during the pre-planned interview whether Prince Philip was frustrated to be in hospital.
"Just a bit. I think that gets to all of us, and then you can only watch the clock so many times and the walls are only so interesting," he said.
"We've had some brilliant and lovely messages from all sorts of people and we really appreciate that and so does he, I've been passing them on. It's fantastic, thank you."
Emotional photographs of Prince Charles in tears when leaving the hospital on the weekend added to fears for Prince Philip's health.
The current visit was his seventh time in hospital in the past 10 years and his longest stay outside scheduled treatments.
The Queen's husband, who has done 22,219 solo engagements since 1952, turns 100 on June 10.
He has remained an independent person, despite his role as the Queen's consort and his age.
Prince Philip was still driving a car until he rolled his Land Rover in 2019 at the royals' Sandringham Estate.
He was admitted to hospital a week ago on Tuesday but was expected to remain in hospital for several more days.
Buckingham Palace said in a statement: "The Duke of Edinburgh remains at King Edward VII's Hospital, where he is receiving medical attention for an infection.
"He is comfortable and responding to treatment but is not expected to leave hospital for several days."
Sources with knowledge of the matter say that Prince Philip's doctors were "acting with an abundance of caution".
Prince Harry, who has not been back to the UK since March last year, was expected to attend his grandfather's birthday celebrations in June.
Originally published as Prince Philip asked Charles to bedside to 'discuss future'