The Duke of Sussex is to attend his father the King’s coronation, but the Duchess of Sussex will miss the historic occasion and stay in California with the couple’s children, Buckingham Palace has announced.
Harry, who laid bare his troubled relationship with the royal family in his Netflix documentary and autobiography Spare, will be there to witness Charles and stepmother the Queen Consort being crowned in Westminster Abbey on May 6.
Meghan will not travel to the UK and instead stay in the US with the couple’s children Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet.
“The Duchess of Sussex will remain in California with Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet.”
The news ends months of “Will they? Won’t they?” speculation about whether the couple would show up to the King’s big day, but will undoubtedly see Meghan accused of snubbing the monarch and the royal family.
Archewell, Harry and Meghan’s charitable foundation, issued a near identical statement to the Palace confirming the duke will join guests at the coronation.
Harry’s attendance will see him appear in a public setting with Charles, Camilla, his brother the Prince of Wales, sister in law the Princess of Wales and the rest of his family for the first time since he lambasted the royals in his memoirs.
It will also be the first time he has been pictured with the Windsors since the funeral of his grandmother the late Queen.
He is expected to make a quick exit, flying back to the US to be with Meghan and the children, and in particular Archie.
Harry criticised Charles’s parenting, said the King was jealous of Meghan and Kate, and accused William of physically attacking him in his tell-all book, which was published in January.
He also branded Camilla “dangerous” and accused her of sacrificing him on her own “personal PR altar”.
The duke went on to allege it was William and Kate who encouraged him to notoriously dress up as a Nazi at a fancy dress party.
In the three years since the Sussexes stepped down as senior working royals, the couple have been critical of the monarchy, telling their story in their Netflix documentary and in a televised interview with Oprah Winfrey.
Harry and Meghan were asked earlier this year to vacate their UK home Frogmore Cottage, in a move sanctioned by the King.
It is unclear what the arrangements will be for Harry’s security while he is in London.
The duke is taking legal action against the Home Office over his security arrangements in the UK.
The RSVP save the date deadline last Monday April 3 came and went without public confirmation of the Sussexes’ decision.
But the announcement now means the Earl Marshal and others planning Operation Golden Orb can finalise the seating plans and other travel arrangements, with just over three weeks to go.
The duke has a claim against Mirror Group Newspapers (MGN) over phone hacking allegations being heard at the High Court, with the trial due to start on May 9 – three days after the coronation.
He is not expected to give evidence in person until early or mid June.
Harry was last seen publicly in the UK at the end of March, when he made a surprise appearance at the High Court, in a separate claim against Daily Mail publisher Associated Newspapers over allegations of unlawful information-gathering.
Royal commentator Michael Cole suggested the duchess had decided to “resist the lure of the limelight” to stay at home for Archie’s birthday.
He told GB News that rather than being a snub, it was some “clever boxing” on Meghan’s part.
He added: “The King has played a blinder on this throughout, putting the invitation in their court from the start.
“They had to make up their mind, leaving them open to the charge of hypocrisy if they did come after knocking seven bells out of the royal family for two years.”
“A family that held her in contempt & constantly fed her to vultures. Any wife with bad in-laws knows she just took back control.
“I’m here for Meghan not giving a damn what anyone thinks #Coronation.”