Meghan Markle will not attend the King’s coronation service in London next month with Prince Harry, but will remain in California with their children Archie and Lilibet.
Buckingham Palace shared the news in a statement today, saying it was ‘happy to confirm’ that the Duke of Sussex, 38, will be at Westminster Abbey on May 6.
But the Duchess of Sussex, 41, is staying at home at the couple’s Montecito residence with year-old Lilibet and Archie, whose fourth birthday falls on the same day as the ceremony.
The couple’s boyfriend, Omid Scobie, confirmed Archie’s birthdayplayed a part in the couple’s decision’ and he expected it to be a ‘pretty quick trip to the UK’ for Harry. The Duke will only attend the ceremony itself, which will likely last a few hours.
It’s unclear exactly how Meghan plans to celebrate her son’s milestone. For his first birthday, she shared a sweet video in support of a Save The Children fundraiser of a beaming Archie as she showed him children’s book Duck! Rabbit!.
It’s unclear exactly how Meghan plans to celebrate her son’s milestone. For his first birthday, she shared a sweet video in support of a Save The Children fundraiser of a beaming Archie as she showed him children’s book Duck! Rabbit! (photo)
The mother of two apparently has one cake with strawberries and whipped cream as Prince Harry decorated their home with balloons to celebrate his first birthday, a source told People magazine at the time.
Sources shared how the couple came up with a “very simple but incredibly joyful” party for their son, with the trio taking time to video call his godparents and family.
The source explained, “Meghan made the cake — strawberries and whipped cream. And Harry helped decorate and blow up balloons.’
Meanwhile, Lilibet’s first birthday was celebrated at Frogmore Cottage in Windsor (the couple’s former British home), with birthday cake, balloons, board games and picnic snacks. The family was in the UK for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
The gifts apparently included a pastel pink VW Beetle ride-on car, £75 from Selfridges, while Sussex supporters donated $100,000 to charity in her honor.
King Charles, then Prince of Wales in June 2022, may have bought her a swing similar to one he bought for Prince George – after an aide to the Sussexes saw him unloaded from their private jet in Santa Barbara.
East London baker Claire Ptak – who baked the couple’s wedding cake in 2018 – created new treats for the low-key party. She later shared a photo of a small peony-covered cake for guests to enjoy.
A spokesperson for the couple did not name any family members attending the party, but Zara and Mike Tindall are believed to have made an appearance at the time. But Prince William, Kate, George and Charlotte were in Wales to represent the Queen.
The mother-of-two apparently made a smash cake with strawberries and whipped cream while Prince Harry decorated their home with balloons to celebrate his first birthday (pictured), a source told People magazine at the time.
In this photo from Lilibet’s first birthday party, the young princess is seen in the arms of her mother Meghan alongside photographer Misan Harriman’s family, including his wife Camilla Holmstroem
Mr Scobie, a trusted contact of the Sussexes, tweeted the news of Harry’s imminent presence at the coronation, adding: “I understand that Archie’s fourth birthday (also on May 6) played a part in the couple’s decision.”
“Expect it to be a fairly quick trip to the UK for Prince Harry, who will only attend the coronation ceremony at Westminster Abbey.”
Responding to today’s announcement, royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams told MailOnline: ‘Meghan will be with Archie on his fourth birthday. This is probably an ideal compromise.
“For months I hoped for a reconciliation, but after Spare, the interviews promoting it and the Netflix docuseries, it is clear that this is highly unlikely and that the rift between the Sussexes and the Royal Family is very serious.”
The announcement comes just over three weeks to the event, and a royal observer told MailOnline: ‘Charles will be pleased. The rest of the family will be relieved that Meghan won’t be there – it would have been extremely uncomfortable for Kate.”
Harry and Meghan had controversially postponed their decision on whether or not to fly for the ceremony, despite the April 3 RSVP date having passed.
Uncertainty about the Sussexes’ presence was thought to have prevented royal officials from signing off on arrangements for seating, transport and security.
Harry, who exposed his troubled relationship with the royal family in his Netflix documentary and autobiography Spare, will be on hand next month to watch his father Charles and stepmother be crowned the Queen Consort.
The news ends months of speculation over whether the couple would turn up for the king’s big day.
In June 2022, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex released a new photo of Lilibet at Frogmore Cottage celebrating her first birthday.
Birthday cake? The Duke and Duchess of Sussex asked the baker who made their wedding cake to make a creation for their daughter Lilibet’s low-key first birthday party. Claire Ptak shared a photo of this beautiful pink cake topped with peonies, which could have been Lilibet’s
A spokesperson for Buckingham Palace said in a statement issued today at 3pm: ‘Buckingham Palace is pleased to confirm that the Duke of Sussex will attend the coronation service at Westminster Abbey on 6 May. The Duchess of Sussex will stay in California with Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet.”
Archewell, Harry and Meghan’s charity foundation, subsequently issued an almost identical statement to the Press Association news agency confirming that the Duke will be attending.
A spokesman said: ‘The Duke of Sussex will attend the coronation service at Westminster Abbey on May 6. The Duchess of Sussex will stay in California with Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet.”
Charles will be crowned in a ceremony full of splendor and traditions stretching back 1,000 years, following the 70-year reign of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, who died last September.