Prince Harry and his wife Meghan will no longer be working members of Britain’s monarchy and they will pay their own way in life as they embark on an independent future, Buckingham Palace said on Saturday.
They will also no longer use their “Royal Highness” titles, the palace said in an announcement that sought to end turmoil in the monarchy sparked earlier this month when the couple announced they wanted to reduce their official duties and spend more time in North America.
The queen and senior family members met last week to discuss the situation and have been in “constructive and friendly” discussions with officials on how this stepping back would work in practice for Harry, 35, and his American wife, former actress Meghan, 38.
“Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family,” Queen Elizabeth said in a statement issued by the palace, referring to the couple’s baby son.
“I recognize 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.”
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 in front of a global TV audience of millions.
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, but they will not take part in any future ceremonial events or royal tours.
The Statements by Queen Elizabeth and Buckingham Palace:
Statement from HM The Queen.
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.
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.
I want to thank them for all their dedicated work across this country, the Commonwealth and beyond, and am particularly proud of how Meghan has so quickly become one of the family.
It is my whole family’s hope that today’s agreement allows them to start building a happy and peaceful new life.
Statement from Buckingham Palace
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are grateful to Her Majesty and the Royal Family for their ongoing support as they embark on the next chapter of their lives.
As agreed in this new arrangement, they understand that they are required to step back from Royal duties, including official military appointments. They will no longer receive public funds for Royal duties.
With The Queen’s blessing, the Sussexes will continue to maintain their private patronages and associations. While they can no longer formally represent The Queen, the Sussexes have made clear that everything they do will continue to uphold the values of Her Majesty.
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 Markle
Buckingham Palace does not comment on the details of security arrangements. There are well established independent processes to determine the need for publicly-funded security.
This new model will take effect in the Spring of 2020.