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Queen says she ‘would have preferred’ Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to remain full-time royals

The Daily Beast

January 13, 2020

With Tom Sykes

In an unprecedented statement after the summit at Sandringham, the queen says she wished Harry and Meghan had stayed in the Firm, but was “entirely supportive” of their plans.

The queen said Monday that she is “entirely supportive of Harry and Meghan’s desire to create a new life as a young family” after crunch talks at her country estate, Sandringham.

In an unprecedented personal statement, following discussions between herself, Prince Charles, Prince William and Prince Harry, Her Majesty said that while “we would have preferred” Harry and Meghan “to remain full-time working members of the royal family, we respect and understand their wish to live a more independent life as a family while remaining a valued part of my family.”

The statement adds that Harry and Meghan “have made clear they do not want to be reliant on public funds.” But it does not make clear what public funds they will be receiving, and what public duties they will be expected to perform to earn that money.

The reference to the couple by their first names is likely to trigger speculation that the couple may be ready to drop their royal HRH tiles. Although they are referred to as “the Sussexes” they are not referred to “Their royal Highnesses” as would have usually been the case.

There will be a “period of transition,” in which Harry and Meghan will spend time in Canada and the U.K. Alluding to “complex matters for my family to resolve,” the queen also said she had asked for “final decisions to be released in the coming days.”

The statement does not specify what decisions, if any, have been taken on Harry and Meghan’s titles, their funding, what their royal roles will be, and security provisions.

Prince Harry, Prince William, and Prince Charles were pictured leaving the Sandringham summit in separate cars after more than two hours of talks with the queen this afternoon.

It is widely expected that Harry will soon join his wife in Canada, however the palace has previously indicated that he would honor a number of commitments here this week.