Putting that rumor to rest. Princess Diana’s former lover James Hewitt opened up about longstanding rumors that he’s Prince Harry’s real dad in a new interview, denying the claims outright.
“Are you Harry’s father?” Australia’s Sunday Night host Melissa Doyle asked Hewitt, now 58, point blank.
“No, I’m not,” he replied in the interview that aired on Sunday, March 12. Asked why he thought the rumors of Harry’s paternity have persisted over the years, the former tank commander responded, “It sells papers. It’s worse for [Harry], probably, poor chap.”
Hewitt and the late Princess Diana met in 1986 when he was brought on as her riding instructor. (Two years after Prince Harry was born.) Around that same time, Diana’s husband, Prince Charles, was rumored to have been seeing his former flame — and current wife — Camilla Parker-Bowles.
“It’s a gradual period and then, you know, suddenly you can’t get enough of each other or see each other as much as you want,” Hewitt says of his whirlwind affair with the princess. He added that he wanted to “whisk her away” from the spotlight.
This article originally appeared on US WEEKLY