Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have surprised many by making a secret visit to England to meet up with the Queen. The Royal couple arrived at Windsor Castle on Thursday for a brief catch-up with Her Majesty.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex returned to the UK together for the first time since they sensationally moved across the Atlantic in March 2020.
Duke and Duchess reportedly paid visit to the Queen and Prince Charles
The California-based couple was flying to the Netherlands for the Invictus Games when they made a pitstop in England and headed over to Windsor Castle to see the Queen.
According to some reports, they also saw Prince Charles. It’s not clear if the pair met any other members of their rather large family.
Harry has visited the UK twice since stepping back as a working royal, once in April 2021 for the funeral of his grandfather, Prince Philip, and a second time in July 2021, to unveil a statue to his late mother, Princess Diana. But Meghan has not stepped foot on British soil since March 2020.
The Duke and Duchess received criticism for not making an appearance at Prince Philip’s memorial service last month at Westminster Abbey. And there were concerns that the couple hadn’t visited the Queen during her recent health problems. Her Majesty has also not yet met her great-granddaughter, Lilibet Diana.
Harry and Meghan’s visit complicated by lawsuit with UK government
Prince Harry has been embroiled in a legal battle with the UK’s Home Office, the institution that deals with all matters related to law and order within the Kingdom.
The government body has declined to guarantee Harry or his family a security detail for when they visit the UK. The couple relinquished their British police protection when they stepped away from royal duties.
Harry has been concerned that his usual security detail of Californian bodyguards would not be privy to security information that UK intelligence may have, and he’s offered to personally pay to have British cops protect him. However, the UK government has refused his offer, stating that the British police are not for hire.
Queen Elizabeth is struggling with health issues
The Queen has struggled with her health in recent months, having suffered from exhaustion, a sprained back, plus a number of other ailments. She also contracted COVID-19 in February, which she referred to as “a very frightening experience.”
Her Majesty did not attend yesterday’s Maundy Service, the first time she’s missed it since 1970, and she’s also not expected to attend the Sunday Easter Service.
Prince Charles filled in for his mother at the Maundy Day Service.