news

No public funds and no royal titles: Harry and Meghan reach conclusion with the Queen.

— With AAP.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will drop their “Royal Highness” titles, as revealed in statements by The Queen and Buckingham Palace.

The news comes 24 years after Harry’s own mother was stripped of her HRH style and her title becoming Diana, Princess of Wales following her divorce.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will also pay back the public money from their AUD$4.5 million renovation on Frogmore Cottage.

The announcement, which was released by the palace on Saturday, sought to end turmoil in the monarchy sparked earlier this month when the couple announced they wanted to step back as senior members of the Royal Family and spend more time in North America.

The Queen and senior family members met last week to discuss the situation and have been in discussions with officials on how this stepping back would work in practice for Harry, 35, and his American wife, former actress Meghan, 38.

“Following many months of conversations and more recent discussions, I am pleased that together we have found a constructive and supportive way forward for my grandson and his family,” Queen Elizabeth said in a statement issued by the palace.

“Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family.

“I recognise the challenges they have experienced as a result of intense scrutiny over the last two years and support their wish for a more independent life.”

meghan markle court case
In 2020, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will be stepping down as senior members of the British Royal Family. Image: Getty.
ADVERTISEMENT

The queen said she was "particularly proud" of how quickly Meghan had become one of the family. The couple married in May 2018 in a lavish ceremony at her home in Windsor Castle, west of London.

The Buckingham Palace also released a separate statement, which read in part: "They will no longer receive public funds for Royal duties."

The statement continued: "The Sussexes will not use their HRH titles as they are no longer working members of the Royal Family."

"The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have shared their wish to repay Sovereign Grant expenditure for the refurbishment of Frogmore Cottage, which will remain their UK family home."

Harry will remain a prince and the couple will keep their titles of Duke and Duchess of Sussex as they begin a new life split between North America and Britain. Meghan is currently in Canada with Archie and Harry is expected to join her soon.

Listen to The Quicky podcast, where in this episode we interview royal experts about their thoughts on Meghan and Harry's decision. Post continues below. 

The couple's plans for independence, announced after a long break over the Christmas period in Canada, caught the rest of the royal family by surprise earlier this month and left the Queen and other senior Windsors hurt and disappointed, according to royal sources.

However, in a TV interview aired in October, both had made it clear how they were struggling with the intense media scrutiny. Harry said he felt his wife had faced "bullying" from some press.

A friend of Harry and Meghan also said last week the couple felt they had been driven out by some members of the Royal Family.

The changes will come into effect in the spring of this year, the palace said, and there will be further royal engagements before the new arrangement comes into effect. The situation will be reviewed in a year's time.

There has been intense media speculation in recent days over what exact roles the couple would have.

While they will no longer receive public funding, Harry's father Prince Charles, the heir to the throne, will continue to offer private financial support, a royal source said.

The source said the couple will spend the majority of their time in North America, and had not signed any commercial agreements as yet.


Sign up for the "Mamamia Daily" newsletter. Your morning hit of the top news stories, to be consumed with a coffee in hand.


00:00 / ???