Meghan and Harry no longer have an office in Buckingham Palace, and negotiations are ongoing whether they can continue to use the “Sussex Royal” branding.
It was also confirmed that the Sussexes would cease undertaking royal duties on March 31st and from that date will no longer formally be senior members of the Royal Family. They will no longer receive funding from the royal grant and have said they will pay back the £2.4 million spent on refurbishing their five-bedroom home, Frogmore Cottage, on the Windsor Estate.
Arrangements will be reviewed in 12 months, signalling the Queen has left the door open for the couple to return to the firm. Harry will also retain the military ranks of the three branches of the armed services that he represents and their patronage will not be filled by any other person until after the one-year review period.
A spokesman for the couple told the BBC that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will formally retain their His and Her Royal Highness (HRH) titles, but will not be using them. They will instead be styled as: Harry, the Duke of Sussex, and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex.
This comes as sources have told the media that there is ongoing discussion over whether they can continue to use the Sussex Royal branding, such as on any future commercial sales products, non-profit ventures, and on their website and Instagram account.
Meghan and Harry announced in January that they would be stepping back from royal duties in order to live a “progressive” new life, wanting to be financially independent.
However, they had planned the move at least several months in advance, with Companies House records revealing that their team had trademarked ‘Sussex Royal’ in June 2019. The intellectual property filing document covers branded items including stationery, clothing, and greetings cards.
Eco-Warriors Harry and Meghan Fly to Trump's America with 'Sustainable' $1,790 Prada Bags https://t.co/fEfTuycyrO
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) February 16, 2020
Sources speaking to Sky News say that Megxit negotiations have been ongoing since the January announcement and a decision has not yet been made on ‘Sussex Royal’, while the Daily Mail reported their own sources as saying the Queen and senior royal figures will likely rule that they would no longer be able to use it.
A source told the Mail on Wednesday: “In many ways, this is inevitable given their decision to step down, but it must surely come as a blow to the couple as they have invested everything into the Sussex Royal brand The Queen would have had little choice, however.
“The Sussexes’ original plan — of being half-in, half-out working royals — was never going to work. Obviously, as the Queen has made clear, they are still much-loved members of her family.
“But if they aren’t carrying out official duties and are now seeking other commercial opportunities, they simply cannot be allowed to market themselves as royals.”
While the couple has been living in Canada with their infant son Archie, they are set to return for their final royal duties at the end of this month, including taking part in the Commonwealth service on March 9th. The spokesman for Prince Harry and Meghan said that they plan to visit the UK “regularly” — a departure from January’s statement suggesting they would be splitting their time between the United Kingdom and North America equally.
The American former TV actress and her husband sent signals earlier in the year that they would no longer be treating the UK as a home after the Daily Mail reported last week that after initially shuttering their property, all 15 staff at Frogmore Cottage had also been let go.
Britons had been outraged by January’s announcement — not by the couple’s decision to step back from royal duties, but the widespread reports that the decision and declaration were made without the knowledge of Harry’s 93-year-old grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II.
At the time, the Royal Family were reportedly said to be “hurt” and “deeply disappointed” by the announcement.
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) January 19, 2020