'I cherish the times shared with you': Prince Harry's touching tribute to 'Granny', the Queen

'I am forever grateful for all of our first meetings... the first moment you hugged your beloved great-grandchildren.' Credit: PA

Prince Harry has paid a touching tribute to "Granny", the late Queen, telling her he "cherishes" their "special times together".

He thanked his grandmother for her “sound advice” and described her as a “guiding compass” through her commitment to service and duty in a statement released on Monday.

The Duke of Sussex finished the statement saying: "Thank you for your infectious smile.

"We, too, smile knowing that you and grandpa are reunited now, and both together in peace."

It is understood the Duke of Sussex's statement was held back a day out of respect for the anniversary of September 11.

Harry thanked his grandmother for her 'infectious smile'. Credit: PA

His statement read: "In celebrating the life of my grandmother, Her Majesty The Queen – and in mourning her loss – we are all reminded of the guiding compass she was to so many in her commitment to service and duty.

“She was globally admired and respected. Her unwavering grace and dignity remained true throughout her life and now her everlasting legacy.

“Let us echo the words she spoke after the passing of her husband, Prince Philip, words which can bring comfort to all of us now: ‘Life, of course, consists of final partings as well as first meetings.'”

He added: “Granny, while this final parting brings us great sadness, I am forever grateful for all of our first meetings—from my earliest childhood memories with you, to meeting you for the first time as my Commander-in-Chief, to the first moment you met my darling wife and hugged your beloved great-grandchildren.

“I cherish these times shared with you, and the many other special moments in between. You are already sorely missed, not just by us, but by the world over."

Harry also said he wanted to honour his father at the start of his reign as King.

“And as it comes to first meetings, we now honour my father in his new role as King Charles III. Thank you for your commitment to service. Thank you for your sound advice."

His comments came after King Charles III said he wished to express his "love" for his son and his daughter-in-law Meghan Markle "as they continue to build their lives overseas" in his inaugural speech to the nation on Friday.

The King's relationship with youngest son Harry has reportedly been fraught since he and wife Meghan decided to step down as working royals and move abroad.

Things were reportedly particularly difficult following Harry and Meghan's explosive interview with Oprah Winfrey.

Many saw the words of affection during the King's speech as an acknowledgement they have put their differences to one side.In a surprise appearance, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex joined Kate and William - now the Prince and Princess of Wales - at Windsor Castle on Saturday.

The siblings and their wives visited the gates of Windsor Castle to view the thousands of floral tributes left by members of the public in honour of the late Queen Elizabeth II.