It was planned that we would not see them on the balcony and the protocol was respected. However, Prince Harry and his wife Meghan still made a discreet public return this Thursday during the parade launching the jubilee of Elizabeth II, two years after their sensational departure. Excluded from the day’s festivities as now ‘non-working’ royalty, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex remained invisible to broadcasts of the ‘Colour Salute’ parade, observing it from the Duke of Wellington’s former office .
The tabloids, however, showed pictures of Meghan, in a dark dress and a large white hat, smilingly waving at children to be quiet and chatting with Harry, whose dark suit contrasted with the traditional military uniform worn by his father Charles and his older brother William in the parade.
However, the couple is expected Friday morning at Saint Paul’s Cathedral for a mass in honor of the sovereign, where they will rub shoulders this time with family members with whom relations seem very degraded.
A few furtive visits
The youngest son of Prince Charles, 37, has returned to the United Kingdom several times since the “Megxit”, which marked the couple’s divorce from the monarchy: for the funeral of the Queen’s husband, Philip, in April 2021 then for the inauguration of a statue of his mother Diana. With Meghan, he also paid a brief visit to the queen, before the Invictus Games in the Netherlands in mid-April. But the couple remained invisible.
For Prince Philip’s funeral, Meghan stayed in Montecito, a California coastal town where they live, because they are seven months pregnant with their daughter, Lilibet. The latter, named in honor of the queen, has never met the monarch or her grandfather Charles. She will be one year old on Saturday, during the Jubilee weekend.
The couple also explained that they do not feel safe in the United Kingdom, where they have been denied royal police protection, which they are contesting in court. According The SunHarry and Meghan, who arrived on a private jet on Wednesday, were escorted by Queen’s Protective Officers, which the tabloid interprets as a gesture of appeasement.
Accused of wanting to spoil the jubilee by drawing attention to them
Since their departure, relations between the “Sussexes” and “the Firm”, a pejorative nickname for the royal family, have turned even more sour when the couple confided in Oprah Winfrey, on American television. Meghan Markle claimed to have received no psychological support despite suicidal thoughts. The former Métis American actress also accused a family member of wondering about the skin color of their now 3-year-old son Archie.
In the United Kingdom, the couple is extremely unpopular with the public (63% unfavorable opinions according to the YouGov institute) and for the tabloids, which do not miss an opportunity to criticize them. They have been accused of wanting to spoil the jubilee by drawing attention to themselves. “Their departure has left the feeling that they have turned their back not only on the country, but on the queen, on the institution”, estimated recently Omid Scobie, author of a book on the couple. “They are absolutely hated and so I think anything they do will be amplified in a very negative way. »
According to him, the visit should allow Harry to renew loose family ties, in particular with Charles, with whom “there were first steps” and William, with whom there is “very little communication”. Sign that the couple intends to keep a presence in the United Kingdom: the DailyMail revealed that they had extended the lease of Frogmore Cottage, the mansion on the Windsor estate where they lived before their departure.