Prince Harry and Meghan Markle returned to the royal fold for the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations – but their relegated seats were a telling sign of their change in status. Far across the aisle from the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Harry and Meghan sat in the second row, behind the Wessex family and the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester. Royal expert Neil Sean has claimed they are in a “stalemate”.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, Mr Sean claimed: “When Harry and Meghan came back to the UK what William was looking for was a bog standard apology.
“Just something to say look, ‘I’m sorry about what I said, I possibly spoke out of line’ but seemingly there was nothing coming forward.
“This has been really difficult for William to get over.”
He added: “Sadly for Harry and Meghan, they don’t want to retract any element of that particular interview or statement so as you can imagine it’s a full stalemate.
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“As far as Prince William is concerned, there’s nothing more to be said at this stage.”
They no longer use their HRH styles and the event was their first public appearance alongside the Windsors since they stepped down as senior royals two years ago amid the Megxit storm.
They did however make a solo procession, holding each other’s hand, down the nave of St Paul’s Cathedral, after the rest of the mass of more than 40 royals and before future king Charles and the Cambridges.
They were personally escorted by Lieutenant Colonel Sir Alexander Matheson of Matheson, the Queen’s Senior Gentleman Usher.
With little happening at grand choreographed royal occasions by chance, it appeared to be a recognition of Harry’s place as sixth in line and a former spare to the heir and of the way things used to be.
Meghan, in an elegant Dior trench coat and matching hat, smiled as she walked through the church, while Harry bit his lip at times, while also nodding greetings to members of the congregation.
There was no obvious interaction shown on the television camera between Harry and his brother William, who have long faced a rift, nor the duke and Charles who have also had a troubled relationship, or between Meghan and Kate.
Just over a year ago, Harry and Meghan accused an unnamed member of the royal family, not the Queen nor the Duke of Edinburgh, of racism and painted the monarchy as an uncaring institution in their controversial Oprah interview.
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Kate was publicly singled out by Meghan for allegedly making her cry in the run-up to her wedding.
Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall meanwhile greeted William and Kate by blowing them a kiss as they met at the West Entrance.
Former BBC royal correspondent Peter Hunt reflected: “For the briefest of moments, Harry and Meghan were back being active Windsors.
“The institution didn’t crumble. The royals need them, but are unlikely to acknowledge what they’ve lost given the hurt felt by all sides.”