In a statement on Saturday, Queen Elizabeth announced that she and her family had "found a constructive and supportive way forward"

By Helen Murphy and Simon Perry
January 18, 2020 02:20 PM
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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will soon be dropping their royal titles.

In a statement on Saturday, Queen Elizabeth announced that she and her family had “found a constructive and supportive way forward” after Harry and Meghan’s bombshell decision to step down as senior members of the royal family.

After a royal family summit on Monday, the statement, as well as a subsequent statement from Buckingham Palace, revealed the conclusions to many questions regarding the couple’s next steps — including whether Harry, 35, and Meghan, 38, would retain their HRH (His/Her Royal Highness) titles.

“The Sussexes will not use their HRH titles as they are no longer working members of the Royal Family,” the statement from Buckingham Palace explained.

Despite this, the couple will always be members of the royal family, and will retain their HRH titles until Spring 2020, when the new changes go into effect.

Harry and Meghan will still be referred to formally as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and will be called Harry, the Duke of Sussex and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex. (The couple was named the Duke and Duchess of Sussex by Queen Elizabeth on their wedding day.)

“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,” the Queen said in the statement on Saturday.

Credit: DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP via Getty

“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,” the statement read. “It is my whole family’s hope that today’s agreement allows them to start building a happy and peaceful new life.”

A separate statement from Buckingham Palace explained the details of Harry and Meghan’s next steps: “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 statement continued.

Meghan Markle, Prince Harry and Queen Elizabeth
| Credit: John Stillwell - WPA Pool/Getty

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“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 home. 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,” the statement concluded.

Saturday’s statement comes just days after a previous statement in which the Queen, 93, had not used Harry and Meghan’s HRH titles.