King Charles plans to offer Harry and Meghan an olive branch by allowing them to stay at Buckingham Palace when they visit Britain in the future, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.
Being the Duke and Duchess of Sussex due to handing over the keys to their previous British home, Frogmore Cottage in Windsor, later this year. But they can be offered Prince Andrew’s old suite at the palace – where he once entertained model Caprice and disgraced socialite Ghisaline Maxwell – when they need it.
It’s the latest move in the complex merry-go-round of royal properties set in motion by the king’s plans to streamline the monarchy and take perks away from non-working royals.
It is clear that Charles has offered Frogmore to Prince Andrew, who will be reluctant to leave the 30-room Royal Lodge mansion in Windsor where he has lived for more than 20 years.
Discussions are underway over whether Prince William and his family can move into the Royal Lodge – which is said to require extensive renovations – once Andrew and his ex-wife Sarah, Duchess of York move out.
After being asked to vacate Frogmore Cottage by the autumn, King Charles is said to be considering allowing the couple access to Buckingham Palace when they visit the UK.
King Charles is allowed to offer the couple Prince Andrews their own rooms in the palace, which are vacated
The Prince and Princess of Wales and their three children currently live in the much smaller Adelaide Cottage in Windsor, which is considered ‘unsuitable’ in the long term, despite the family being ‘very happy’ there.
A source said Adelaide Cottage may be offered to Andrew’s youngest daughter, Eugenie, who is pregnant with her second child, who previously rented Frogmore from her cousin Harry.
For many years Andrew enjoyed the use of a suite in Buckingham Palace known as the Chamber Floor.
But he lost his London haven after being stripped of his military roles and royal patronage over his ties to disgraced child sex trafficker and pedophile Jeffrey Epstein. Andrew agreed to a huge payout to settle a US lawsuit brought against him by Epstein victim Virginia Giuffre, but he continues to strenuously deny any crime or wrongdoing.
The Duke of York’s belongings have been moved from Buckingham Palace, including his collection of teddy bears and cuddly toys, which the palace staff had to arrange exactly on his bed each day.
Moving vans have also been spotted at Windsor Estate.
Harry and Meghan – who now live in a £12million nine-bedroom house in Montecito, California, after leaving the royal family three years ago – have been told they have until the autumn to move all their belongings out of Frogmore. Cottage to move.
Last night, Palace sources said the couple are still invited to the King’s coronation in May, despite Harry’s outspoken criticism of his family in his memoir Spare.
Sources close to the King and Queen Consort say the couple were “furious” and “tired” by revelations in Prince Harry’s book, in which he described his stepmother as “dangerous” and claimed his brother William once told him against the ground in a raging rage.
Harry has demanded an apology from his family in TV interviews, but is said to have not spoken to his father or brother since the book was published in January.
Sources close to the King and Queen Consort say the couple were ‘furious’ and ‘tired’ by revelations in Prince Harry’s book
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle could stay in a Buckingham Palace apartment when they come to the UK for the King’s coronation
Sources close to the royal family said the king ‘doesn’t want to deprive the Sussexes of a base in the UK’
A source said: ‘His Majesty is furious, as is William. But the king is not a bad man. He doesn’t want to see his brother Andrew homeless or penniless. Nor does he want to deprive the Sussexes of a base in the UK.
London is better. The Sussexes have always wanted rooms in Buckingham Palace. They could have Andrew’s old rooms there, which are being vacated right now.’
Other options being considered are that the couple could stay in St James’s Palace if necessary, or even in Princess Diana’s former home – the Grand Apartment 1 at Kensington Palace – which sits vacant and is currently undergoing renovation.
Frogmore Cottage could go to Prince Andrew but would be considerably smaller than his 30-room abode at the Royal Lodge
The Royal Lodge could become the new home of the Prince and Princess of Wales and their three children
Andrew is said to have resigned himself to the fact that he will not be able to keep the Royal Lodge
According to sources in Windsor, Andrew has accepted that he will not be allowed to keep the Royal Lodge, where he has lived for 20 years.
He is said to have had plenty of time to prepare for the news, having first been informed of the plan when his mother the Queen was alive.
A source said: ‘Royal Lodge is far too grand and far too large for Prince Andrew’s current stature. Plus, it’s aimed at kids, with its Wendy house and swimming pool, so naturally it’s long been the natural choice for Prince William.
‘Adelaide Cottage is too small for a future king and queen in due course. There isn’t enough room for all the security they and their children will need for years to come, which is why Royal Lodge was openly discussed back in January. It has been on the agenda for much longer, since the Queen was alive.’
Another source said Frogmore Cottage was offered to Andrew on a take-it-or-leave-it basis, adding: “Andrew can have Frogmore Cottage or nothing. But Adelaide could end up in the hands of one of his daughters.”
Princess Beatrice bought a £3.5 million Cotswolds farmhouse near Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire in 2021, which has undergone extensive renovations overseen by her property developer husband Edo Mapelli-Mozzi.
However, Eugenie has no property yet, and until a recent move to Portugal, she rented Frogmore Cottage from Harry. Expectations are that soon-to-be Eugenie, her husband Jack and their two-year-old son August will eventually return from Portugal to live in the UK.
Another source added: “If Adelaide Cottage goes to one of the girls, it’s more likely Eugenie will end up there and not Beatrice.”