Meghan and Harry Admit They Weren’t Married in Secret Before Royal Wedding

TOPSHOT - Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and his wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex emerge from the West Door of St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, in Windsor, on May 19, 2018 after their wedding ceremony. (Photo by Ben STANSALL / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read BEN STANSALL/AFP …
BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images

A spokesman for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex has admitted that the couple’s claim that they were married in secret before the public wedding was not true.

The spokesman made the admission two weeks after Meghan and Harry had told Oprah Winfrey they were married privately by the Archbishop of Canterbury three days before the multimillion-pound public ceremony at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle in May 2018.

They told The Sun in a Tuesday report that Harry and Meghan had “privately exchanged personal vows a few days before their official/legal wedding on May 19”.

Speaking from inside her chicken run at the couple’s £10.6 million ($14.7m) home in the exclusive Santa Barbara community of Montecito, Meghan had told Winfrey: “You know, three days before our wedding, we got married.

“No-one knows that. But we just called the Archbishop [of Canterbury, Justin Welby], and we said, ‘Look. This thing. This spectacle is for the world, but we want our union between us’,” she claimed.

“So, like, the vows that we have framed in our room are just the two of us in our backyard with the Archbishop of Canterbury.”

Prince Harry then confirmed to the American talk show host that it was “Just the three of us.”

The claims provoked members of the state Church of England to dispute that the couple could have been married before the lavish public wedding, as the Church and secular law require two witnesses and for the wedding to take place at an authorised venue. Further, a married couple cannot marry again.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, the Most Reverend Justin Welby, would not be drawn into confirming nor denying the claims that he had married the couple in the garden of Nottingham Cottage, which is on the grounds of Kensington Palace.

However, Newcastle clergyman Reverand Mark Edwards had spoken to staff at Lambeth Palace, the official residence of the Archbishop, who told the cleric that Welby had had a “private conversation with the couple in the garden about the wedding, but I can assure you, no wedding took place until the televised national event”.

Edwards said the Archbishop’s office told him: “Justin does not do private weddings. Meghan is an American, she does not understand.”

The Sussex’s spokesman was forced to deny Meghan and Harry’s claims after The Sun had revealed on Monday it had seen the marriage certificate, which confirmed the marriage date as that of the public ceremony.

Stephen Borton, who helped draw up the licence, told the tabloid: “I’m sorry, but Meghan is obviously confused and clearly misinformed.

“They did not marry three days earlier in front of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

“The Special Licence I helped draw up enabled them to marry at St George’s Chapel in Windsor and what happened there on 19 May 2018 and was seen by millions around the world was the official wedding as recognised by the Church of England and the law.”

Mr Borton had speculated that what Meghan and Harry thought was a “backyard” marriage presided over by the most senior bishop in England was likely a “simple rehearsal”.

The news comes as yet another member of staff has reportedly left the employ of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, amidst claims surfacing that Meghan had bullied palace staff in the period she was an active member of the royal household.

According to The Telegraph, the couple’s chief of staff, Catherine St-Laurent, has resigned after only 11 months. While staying on in an advisory role, sources speaking to the newspaper claim that St-Laurent “wanted out”.

St-Laurent will be replaced by the Sussex’s UK spokesman, James Holt. The newspaper notes that since St-Laurent’s replacement and the appointment of Ben Browning as the head of content for Archewell, progressive Prince Harry and feminist Meghan have elevated two white men to be the most powerful people at the royal couple’s charitable foundation.

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