Prince Harry seeks ‘more peaceful life’ as reluctantly ends royal role

Britain’s Prince Harry has spoken of his sadness at being forced to give up his royal duties in a deal with Queen Elizabeth and senior Windsors, saying there was no other option if he and his wife Meghan were to seek an independent future.

Buckingham Palace and the queen announced on Saturday that Harry and Meghan would no longer be working members of Britain’s monarchy, no longer use their “Royal Highness” titles and would now pay their own way in life, freeing them to forge what they call a “progressive new role”.

The new arrangement was struck to end a crisis the couple sparked by announcing earlier this month they wanted to cut down on official engagements and spend more time in Canada and the United States, while remaining active royals.

In a speech to the Sentebale charity on Sunday, a clearly upset Harry said the final outcome was not what he and his American wife, a former actress, had wanted.

“Our hope was to continue serving the queen, the Commonwealth and my military associations without public funding. Sadly that wasn’t possible,” the prince, the sixth-in-line to the throne, said.

“I’ve accepted this knowing it doesn’t change who I am, or how committed I am. But I hope that helps you understand what it had come to, that I would step back from all I have ever known to take a step forward into what I hope can be a more peaceful life.”

Under the arrangement, 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 Britain and North America, where they will spend the majority of their time. But they will not take part in any future ceremonial events or royal tours.

Royal commentators said it amounted to an “abdication” from the “firm” – as the royals are known – and showed that, beneath the warm words in which she said Harry and Meghan were much loved, the queen had taken a decisive line by insisting on a clean break.

“NO OPTION”

“It brings me great sadness that it has come to this,” said Harry. He said the decision to step back had followed months of talks and had not been a decision he had come to lightly. They were not walking away, he explained.

“As far as this goes, there really was no other option.”

He told the audience at the charity he co-founded to help children with HIV in Africa that he wanted them to hear the truth from him “not as a prince, or a duke, but as Harry, the same person that many of you have watched grow up over the last 35 years but with a clearer perspective”.

“The UK is my home and a place that I love. That will never change,” he said.

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 and left the queen and other senior members 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 immense media attention. The couple had also started legal action against a newspaper for printing a letter she sent to her estranged father, Thomas Markle.

Harry said he felt his wife had faced “bullying” from some tabloids similar to that faced by his mother Princess Diana who died in a car crash while trying to escape paparazzi photographers.

“When I lost my mum 23 years ago, you took me under your wing. You’ve looked out for me for so long but the media is a powerful force and my hope is one day our collective support for each other can be more powerful because this is so much bigger than just us,” he said.

Buckingham Palace has said the couple would no longer receive public money and that they would repay the cost of refurbishing their cottage in Windsor, which official figures show amounted to 2.4 million pounds ($3.1 million).

But certain details, such as their future security arrangements or whether the couple could continue to use the “Sussex Royal” title for their website and branding, have either not been finalized or publicly revealed.

Meghan is currently in Canada with their baby son Archie and Harry is expected to join her soon.

The royal crisis, which has dominated the British news agenda for almost two weeks, overshadowing Brexit and tensions over Iran, exposed a deep rift among the Windsors and poses questions about its role in the modern world.

The Sun newspaper said Harry and his elder brother William, with whom he acknowledged he had fallen out, had ended their feud but he remained at loggerheads with his father Prince Charles, the heir-to-the-throne.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he believed the whole of Britain would want to wish the couple the very best.

However, Meghan’s father was less generous, accusing them of damaging the monarchy.

“They are destroying it, they are cheapening it, they’re making it shabby,” Markle told Britain’s Channel 5.

(Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Guy Faulconbridge and Alison Williams)

Responses

  1. She’s really got you, hasn’t she – well I hope she’s worth it.

  2. Will Harrry and Meghan forego the security they enjoy at Canadian taxpayer expense?

  3. One wonders if Harry will continue to jet around the world to proselytize about the dangers of CO2? Maybe he can plane-share with Greta Thunberg.

    Meanwhile Meghan will pursue the Hollywood career her royal duties precluded.

    1. Are you still standing behind your prediction that Hillary will enter the 2020 race?

  4. So Harry, a neutered male now apparently, just wants a nice quiet life. Sit by the fire place, eat biscuits and drink tea and watch Downton Abbey episodes. I would suggest Benny Hill episodes, but they are no longer acceptable. Guess he will assume a new name, Dirty Harry…NOT like our Dirty Harry, more like fat, dumb couch potato Harry. While Meghan Marxist walks around Canada and the UK with his balls in a bag like some kind of scalp.

  5. markle sure did a number on the Queen and her family. No wonder the Queen and markle didn’t get along. At some point Harry will see what markle has done to his family and then she will be out in the cold where she belongs. She is a second rate actress and not worth the time of the Royal Family.

    1. WHAT is it that you perceive qualifies you to rate an actress or disapprove of the spousal selection of Prince Harry? —You are a member of the Academy? Are you an expert on royal marriages? Are you a confidante of the Queen and do you have her permission to contradict her public statements?

  6. It’s nobody’s business but Meghan & Harry’s. If anyone knew what they were dealing with they’d understand. People should respect them and leave them alone!

  7. Who cares. Inbred spoiled brat and.hollywei rd groupthink bimbo.

    1. Let me guess…..You don’t consider yourself or your 6 up votes racist?

  8. He’s whipped. She was a marginal actress and thought she would get more attention by being a royal. Just guessing but bigger than Kim Kardashian. She didn’t think she would be scrutinized as an outsider? The Brits saw her for what she was. And Harry is wrong. She is nothing like his mother. She was a lady who was treated badly.

    1. I realize you perceive you know more about the decision than Harry, but I am going to take Harry’s words as a more credible source. But I see 6 IJR readers think you know what is going on in the UK. Keep in mind that they are probably among the IJR readers that believe Mexico is paying for the wall.

      1. Phyllis, I am enjoying your inane replies more than the comments and the article!

  9. Actually, it was “with reluctance ” because the two of them had big plans. They thought they could amass a fortune for themselves off the monarchy. While others went about their duties, received a salary, these two wanted their cake and eat it too.

  10. What the heck would they do anyway? Wave at parades? Cut ceremonial ribbons? Play nice to the old lady on the throne (even if she is their great-grandmother?) Best wishes to them both.

  11. Reluctantly? Really? It was his decision He didn’t have to go.

  12. He’s still going to be supported by his father. He’s still going to have tax payer security provided off the back of Canadian citizens. He still will have a very easy ride in life. I can care less one way or the other, it’s his life but don’t play the victim.

Comments are closed.