Saturday 24 September 2022 10:02 PM Late monarch 'surprised' divorcee Duchess wanted to wear white at KATIE ... trends now

Saturday 24 September 2022 10:02 PM Late monarch 'surprised' divorcee Duchess wanted to wear white at KATIE ... trends now
Saturday 24 September 2022 10:02 PM Late monarch 'surprised' divorcee Duchess wanted to wear white at wedding KATIE ... trends now

Saturday 24 September 2022 10:02 PM Late monarch 'surprised' divorcee Duchess wanted to wear white at wedding KATIE ... trends now

When Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, stepped back as working Royals and moved to America, William didn’t just lose a brother, he lost his best friend. To this day, he cannot forgive Harry, not least because of the consequences for his wife, Kate, and for their children.

Harry’s move abroad means that the Waleses – however willingly – must carry a significantly greater Royal burden than they’d expected while trying to raise a young family who, thanks to their parents’ ever-greater profile, have found themselves very much in the spotlight. ‘We’ve seen the children performing in front of the cameras in a way that cannot have been part of the original plan,’ observes Royal historian Robert Lacey.

‘We know that William and Kate want to bring up their children in relative seclusion and privacy, but the children have had to become a prominent part of the show.’

‘I don’t think the Queen ever truly understood Harry’s decision to leave,’ reflected the late Lady Elizabeth Anson, who spoke with the Queen frequently during this period according to the book

‘I don’t think the Queen ever truly understood Harry’s decision to leave,’ reflected the late Lady Elizabeth Anson, who spoke with the Queen frequently during this period according to the book 

Meghan felt she had not been adequately supported by the Royal Family in the run-up to her May 2018 wedding

Meghan felt she had not been adequately supported by the Royal Family in the run-up to her May 2018 wedding

If the departure of the Sussexes has been hurtful and upsetting to William on a personal level, the rift between the brothers has raised fundamental questions about the responsibilities of Royalty, about its purpose and value in the modern age. And it will be down to the future King William and Queen Catherine to provide the answers.

‘Megxit’ was a source of particular pain to the Queen in the last years of her life.

‘I don’t think the Queen ever truly understood Harry’s decision to leave,’ reflected the late Lady Elizabeth Anson, who spoke with the Queen frequently during this period. ‘Turning one’s back on duty is completely alien to the Queen and she has been very hurt by it all,’ said Lady Elizabeth, who was a cousin of Her Majesty and known for organising Royal parties and events.

‘William was angry. Charles was distraught. But Harry wasn’t prepared to back down over Meghan.’

Lady Elizabeth suggests that some of Harry’s behaviour had already left the Queen bewildered even before he set eyes on Meghan.

In 2017, when Harry spoke in public about the ‘total chaos’ caused by ‘shutting down all of my emotions for the last 20 years’, the Queen feared her grandson risked shattering the mystique vital to the survival of the monarchy.

According to Lady Elizabeth, the Queen was concerned that in revealing so much of himself, Harry was feeding an insatiable beast.

‘When I said to the Queen “I think it’s no bad thing he’s opened up”, she replied, “I’m afraid I can’t agree with you. [The media] will want to know more and more.” ’

When Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, stepped back as working Royals and moved to America, William didn’t just lose a brother, he lost his best friend according to the book (Pictured: The brothers at the late Queen Elizabeth II's funeral)

When Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, stepped back as working Royals and moved to America, William didn’t just lose a brother, he lost his best friend according to the book (Pictured: The brothers at the late Queen Elizabeth II's funeral) 

There had been persistent rumours about tension between the Sussexes and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, as Kate and William were then styled, from the earliest days of Harry’s relationship with Meghan. Harry had hoped that his sister- in-law, Kate, would show Meghan the way, that the two women would become friends.

It seems, however, there was a coolness between them from the off – a ‘personality clash’ was how it was put to me by someone close to the Princess of Wales.

Meghan felt she had not been adequately supported by the Royal Family in the run-up to her May 2018 wedding.

Harry’s complaint was still more personal: that he didn’t truly have the endorsement he really craved from his brother and Kate, the ‘sister [he’d] always wanted’, as a source put it.

William did have concerns, in fact – not least that his brother’s relationship with Meghan had progressed too quickly.

‘It’s probably a bit strong to say he didn’t like Meghan from the start, but William had reservations,’ confides one of the Prince’s oldest friends. ‘He was obviously happy for Harry but he was also cautious, as he always is about people getting close very quickly to his family.’

Then, in the weeks before the wedding, came the notorious disagreement between Kate and Meghan over whether Kate’s daughter Charlotte should wear tights with her dress for the ceremony. It was alleged, too, there had been a row over which Royal tiara Meghan would be permitted to borrow from the Queen.

The wedding day was a great success, although the Queen had reservations about the pure white of Meghan’s Givenchy dress, designed by Clare Waight Keller

The wedding day was a great success, although the Queen had reservations about the pure white of Meghan’s Givenchy dress, designed by Clare Waight Keller

‘What Meghan wants, Meghan gets!’ Harry is supposed to have shouted at the Queen’s dresser Angela Kelly, earning him a stern telling-off from his grandmother.

Lady Elizabeth said: ‘The run-up to the wedding was really very difficult for the Queen.

‘She was very upset by how Harry had behaved and some of his demands and the way he went about things his own way.

‘I remember her being rather upset by how beastly Harry was being. Their relationship was quite badly damaged by it all.’

The wedding day was a great success, although the Queen had reservations about the pure white of Meghan’s Givenchy dress, designed by Clare Waight Keller.

According to a source: ‘The Queen was surprised that Meghan wore pure white on her wedding day. Perhaps it’s a generational thing, but she believes if you’ve been married before, you wear off-white on your wedding day, which is what the Duchess of Cornwall did.’

Keen to support anyone marrying into her family, however, the Queen did her best to get to know the new Duchess. She was aware that Meghan’s father, Thomas Markle, had posed difficulties, in particular by selling staged photographs of himself to the media.

The fact that Harry had not yet met Thomas and that Meghan was still not speaking to her father concerned the Queen, and while she rarely intervened, she made a point of speaking to Harry and Meghan about the situation. ‘It was the Queen’s feeling that Meghan should sort things out with her father and that Harry should have met Thomas before the wedding,’ says a close family friend. ‘She thought the whole thing could have been better handled.’

In June 2018, a trip to Chester was organised specifically so that the Queen and Meghan could appear together on an official Royal visit

In June 2018, a trip to Chester was organised specifically so that the Queen and Meghan could appear together on an official Royal visit

On a separate trip to Dublin, Meghan was criticised for an extravagant wardrobe including Givenchy, Roland Mouret and Emilia Wickstead

On a separate trip to Dublin, Meghan was criticised for an extravagant wardrobe including Givenchy, Roland Mouret and Emilia Wickstead

Efforts to involve and include Meghan continued. In June 2018, a trip to Chester was organised specifically so that the Queen and Meghan could appear together on an official Royal visit. They would open a major new bridge and visit a theatre.

The new Duchess of Sussex was invited to travel on the Royal Train with the Queen, an honour that had not then been afforded to William, Harry or Kate.

The tour was a success, but on a separate trip to Dublin, Meghan was criticised for an extravagant wardrobe including Givenchy, Roland Mouret and Emilia Wickstead.

Back at the Palace, she had been advised to take a leaf out of Kate’s book and mix designer labels with clothes from the high street, and to recycle her wardrobe like the Queen.

I am told there was a fraught exchange between Meghan and Palace staff when she was told that she could no longer accept freebies and generous discounts on new clothes.

Such behaviour would be contrary to Royal guidelines and judged too close to advertisement.

But so anxious was the Queen to include her new daughter-in-law, in fact, that she put Meghan on a Royal ‘fast track’, granting her the patronages of the National Theatre and the Association of Commonwealth Universities, which she had held herself for 45 years and 33 years respectively. It amounted to a very public endorsement.

In March 2019, she elevated the Duchess still further, appointing her vice president of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust to work alongside Harry, who was already serving as its president.

In March 2019, the Queen elevated the Duchess of Sussex further, appointing her vice president of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust to work alongside Harry, who was already serving as its president.

In March 2019, the Queen elevated the Duchess of Sussex further, appointing her vice president of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust to work alongside Harry, who was already serving as its president.

These were plum roles for the Sussexes, so significant they made William ‘slightly jealous’, according to one source. ‘[The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust job] was a role William had rather fancied for himself,’ said the insider.

When Harry and Meghan announced their wish to move out of Kensington Palace, the Queen offered them Frogmore Cottage in Windsor Great Park as

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