Prince Harry, 37, and Meghan Markle, 41, have been mourning Queen Elizabeth II alongside Prince William, 39, Kate Middleton, 40, King Charles III, 73, and other members of the British royal family since her death on Sept. 8, but they will not be invited to attend her pre-funeral reception. According to a source for The Telegraph, the pair was actually uninvited to the event after they were accidentally extended an invite earlier this week. Harry and Meghan “appeared baffled” by the situation, per the insider.
HollywoodLife reached out to both Harry and Meghan’s representatives for confirmation on the matter but did not receive an immediate reply. The event will be hosted by Charles and Camilla, the Queen Consort, per Telegraph, and is meant to be attended by only working members of the family. According to The Sun, a spokesperson for the king said, “This is one of the last moments for Her Majesty the Queen as opposed to the first for His Majesty.”
The news may come as a shock to some, considering the family has put on a united front as they honor the life and legacy of the late queen, who died at the age of 96 and was the UK’s longest-ruling monarch. Prince Harry and Meghan were spotted waiting in their car on Sept. 13 as Queen Elizabeth II‘s coffin made its way to Buckingham Palace in London from the RAF Northolt Airforce Station in Ruislip and standing behind William and Kate at the Service for the Reception of Her Majesty’s Coffin at Westminster Hall in London on Sept. 14. Furthermore, Meghan and Kate were photographed breaking royal protocol and hugging mourners outside Windsor Castle two days after the queen passed, per Us Weekly.
Although Meghan and Harry, who notoriously stepped down from their royal duties and moved to California in 2020, have seemingly been with the famous family every step of the way as they continue to mourn the loss of their queen, the invite mix-up may be an unsettling reminder of their status in the family. The pair turned heads when they broke royal protocol and held hands when they exited Westminster Hall on Sept. 14, but many people, including body language expert Inbaal Honigman, pointed out that they are no longer working royals, so they should be able to show PDA. “Harry and Meghan are grieving relatives and are under no obligation to follow royal protocol,” he told Express of their affection. Harry also broke protocol by crying at the Palace of Westminster on Sept. 14.
The queen’s funeral is scheduled for Sept. 19, and her casket will remain in Westminster Abbey in London until then. Heads of state from all around the world, such as President Joe Biden, have been invited to the pre-funeral reception.