The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expected to hold talks with the Queen in March – although some reports suggest it may have been cancelled – one year after they dramatically stepped down as senior members of the Royal Family. Part of the arrangement for the couple to seek financial independence away from the Firm involved them keeping their HRH styles, despite not using them. But the pair may still have issues to iron out with her Majesty as Harry was reported to be devastated to lose his military titles when he stepped down.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams explained that despite their titles being reviewed in the talks, they appear to be happy with their new financial self-sufficiency.
He said: “There is no sign at all that Harry and Meghan are anything other than content with their independence which also extends to financial self-sufficiency.
“They still retain their roles as President and Vice-President of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust but lost their roles as Commonwealth Youth Ambassadors under the Sandringham Agreement with the Queen.”
Harry and Meghan quickly made a comfortable life for themselves in the US by signing multi-million-pound deals to make documentaries with Netflix and podcasts with Spotify.
But Mr Fitzwilliams added it is too soon to tell how much success their new global brand will have.
He also said the pair should still keep their titles as they were a gift from the Queen on their wedding day.
He said: “Their brand has global reach but the actual level of interest in them in the Commonwealth will only be clear when the pandemic is over.
“Harry and Meghan are certainly less popular in the UK but they are concentrating on the US and the wider world.
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The Duke and Duchess of Sussex hinted they were cutting ties with their old royal monikers after they opted to introduce themselves simply by their first names on several occasions over the past year.
In their Spotify podcast debut last month, they introduced themselves simply as “Harry” and “Meghan”.
Harry is also said to be hoping the 12-month review will clear their air after being devastated to learn he would lose his military titles.
Before he stepped down as a senior royal, Harry held the titles: Captain-General of the Royal Marines, Honorary Air Force Commandant of the Royal Air Force Base Honington, and Honorary Commodore-in-Chief of the Royal Naval Commands’ Small Ships and Diving.
But his “lifelong commitment” to the military was ultimately over when he chose to move to the US.
Authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand wrote in Finding Freedom: “Harry’s lifelong commitment to the military was why the Mountbatten Festival of Music three days later was a particularly difficult moment; he was set to wear his Captain-General of the Royal Marines uniform for the very last time.
“During a conversation backstage, on arrival, Harry told Major General Matthew Holmes; ‘I’m devastated that I am having to step down.’ It was so unnecessary’, Meghan later told a friend of the decision to strip Harry of his military honours.”
However, the Duke is said to have planned to request a face-to-face meeting with the Queen in the UK, but this may not be able to go ahead due to the restrictions over travel due to the Covid pandemic.