It’s been one year since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle shocked the world by stepping down as senior members of the royal family. Now, after a year-long trial period, they have confirmed that their days as working royals are permanently over.
Entertainment Tonight reported that Buckingham Palace released a statement confirming this on Friday, saying that Harry and Queen Elizabeth talked this decision over.
“The honorary military appointments and royal patronages held by the duke and duchess will therefore be returned to Her Majesty, before being redistributed among working members of the royal family,” the palace said. “While all are saddened by their decision, the duke and duchess remain much loved members of the family.”
A source with the palace said that Harry and Meghan’s choice to not return to their royal roles after the one-year review period was “made after conversations between the Duke of Sussex and members of the royal family.”
A spokesperson for Harry and Meghan addressed the situation, saying, “As evidenced by their work over the past year, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex remain committed to their duty and service to the U.K. and around the world, and have offered their continued support to the organizations they have represented regardless of official role. We can all live a life of service. Service is universal.”
This comes days after Harry and Meghan announced that they were expecting their second child. Sources said that the Queen and the rest of the royal family were “delighted” by the news.
“I’m told by sources that both the duke and duchess did call their family back in the U.K., the queen and Prince of Wales and I understand the Duke of Cambridge as well, they were all told the happy news before it was made public,” said royal expert Katie Nicholl. “And it’s something that the royal family has been celebrating.”
Harry and Meghan also just announced that they will be giving a tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey that is set to air on March 7. Oprah’s best friend Gayle King has told fans that “nothing is off limits” in this interview.
Harry and Meghan shocked the world when they stepped down as senior royals and moved across the world to Montecito, California. They have since signed major deals with Netflix and Spotify to create content for the streaming services.