Bayelsa Times

Harry and Meghan return to the fold in first official appearance together since Megxit

News
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle reunited with the rest of the Royal Family on Friday for their first joint engagement in two years, but were kept apart from Prince William, Kate, Prince Charles and Camilla and left separately.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were at St Paul’s Cathedral for the Service of Thanksgiving for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, but were stage-managed by royal aides to sit on the other side of the aisle to William and Kate.
Buckingham Palace officials took great care in trying to avoid a repeat of the frosty scenes when the Sussexes and Cambridges sat near each other and left together at their last joint event in March 2020 at Westminster Abbey.
And aides would have been delighted that today’s service in front of 2,000 special guests passed without any such incident or negative ‘optics’ given the attempts to ensure today was about the Queen and her 70-year reign.
Kate and William chatted to Prince Charles and Camilla inside the cathedral, but there was no such rapport with Harry and Meghan who sat in between Lady Sarah Chatto and Princess Eugenie’s husband Jack Brooksbank.
Harry and William have had a long-standing feud, while Harry has accused his father Charles of cutting him off financially and Meghan claimed an unnamed royal made a comment about Archie’s skin tone before he was born – with the Sussexes having a war of words with the Palace following last year’s bombshell Oprah Winfrey interview.
Today, Charles officially represented the absent 96-year-old monarch at the service in London which began at 11.30am.
The Queen missed the historic event following a last-minute decision announced by Buckingham Palace at 7.30pm on Thursday after she experienced ‘discomfort’ during Trooping The Colour events earlier in the day.
There was also no appearance at St Paul’s by Prince Andrew after he tested positive for coronavirus earlier this week. The Queen watched the service from her residence of Windsor Castle, and it was broadcast on BBC One.
Harry and Megan walked down the aisle of St Paul’s hand-in-hand after the service, joined by other members of the royal family and following Charles and Camilla and William and Kate, but did not appear with them outside.
The Sussexes turned to talk to Lady Sarah Chatto, who had been sat next to Meghan, and her husband Daniel Chatto.
Senior clerics waited to bid the congregation goodbye and Meghan shared a joke with the Archbishop of York and touched Harry’s arm as he joined the conversation. The trio then laughed before the Sussexes moved on.
Members of the crowd outside St Paul’s sang the National Anthem while they waited for the Royal Family to leave at the end, before Charles and Camilla were the first to walk out as the bells began to toll at the end of the service.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge followed, with Kate waving cheerily to the crowds while chatting to her husband.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex left holding hands and were seen chatting to Zara Tindall and her husband Mike. Both Harry and Meghan shook hands with the Lord Mayor before getting into a car.
The Sussexes are not expected to attend a reception at the nearby Guildhall which featured a series of other Royal Family members and senior politicians including Prime Minster Boris Johnson and Home Secretary Priti Patel.

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