Meghan Markle won’t come to the UK this summer because she ‘doesn’t want to be away from Archie’, the author of her biography Finding Freedom has claimed.
The Duchess of Sussex, 39, who is currently living in her $14million mansion in California having stepped back from her royal duties last year, does not plan to accompany Prince Harry, 36, when he visits his family for the first time since Megxit, according to royal insiders.
Omid Scobie said current travel plans were ‘up in the air’ due to the Covid-19 crisis, but that it is ‘easier for the Duke to do the trip solo’.
Speaking to Ok! magazine, the royal expert explained: ‘Meghan wouldn’t want to be away from Archie and it would be very tricky to factor a small child into their travels with all the restrictions that could potentially be in place.’
Meghan Markle, 39, won’t come to the UK this summer because she ‘doesn’t want to be away from Archie’, the author of her biography Finding Freedom has claimed
He added that the Duchess would likely catch up with the family virtually, explaining: ‘Archie loves being on Zoom calls with the family and the Queen has been enjoying those throughout lockdown.’
While Meghan could potentially be missing several events in the UK, including the Queen’s birthday and the unveiling of the Princess Diana statue, Omid said the royal would still make an effort with those occasions.
He explained: ‘I’m sure Meghan will send the Queen some gorgeous flowers for her birthday and also get Archie to help her with the card.’
His comments come after royal expert Nigel Cawthrone, author of the book Prince Andrew, told FEMAIL the decision not to travel to the UK would be a ‘snub’ from the duchess and would cast a ‘dark shadow’ over the Firm’s summer celebrations.
Omid Scobie said the Duke of Sussex will travel solo later this year to visit the UK, while the Duchess will send the Queen ‘some gorgeous flowers’ for her birthday
He claimed: ‘If Meghan decided not to attend for no reason it would indeed be a snub to her royal in-laws and mark a nadir in the relations between the royal family and the Sussexes.’
Following the news that Meghan is ‘unlikely’ to return to the UK this summer, sources have been at pains to stress that her tentative decision not to accompany her husband is for ‘personal and practical’ reasons and is not in any way being construed as a ‘snub’.
But if she decides not to travel it will save royal officials something of a diplomatic headache.
Mr Cawthorne explained: ‘It would be a public relations disaster that would hang like a dark shadow over the celebrations.’
Insiders said the Duke of Sussex is still planning to fly to the UK to see the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William (pictured with Camilla and Kate in March 2020) – along with his niece and nephews
The Duke and Duchess had been expected to attend key royal events in June, including Prince Philip’s 100th birthday celebrations and Trooping The Colour, the official celebration of the Queen’s 95th birthday.
Prince Harry is also due in the UK in July for the long-awaited unveiling of the statue that he and William commissioned in memory of Diana at Kensington Palace.
But there has been widespread, quiet concern that the couple’s involvement in the larger family events – and the inevitable public and media furore that would surround their appearance – could detract from the significance of such key occasions.
Speaking last week, a source said Meghan’s choice not to travel was a ‘personal and practical decision for the couple.’
The Duchess of Sussex, 39, who is currently living in her $14million mansion in California having stepped back from her royal duties last year, is ‘unlikely’ to accompany Prince Harry, 36, when he visits his family for the first time since Megxit, sources revealed this weekend. Pictured, The Queen, Meghan, Prince Harry, Prince William and Kate in 2018
Another added: ‘Her Majesty made very clear when they left the UK that Harry and Meghan were still much loved members of her own family and would be very welcome to attend family events. That still holds true.
‘Practically, however, it comes with the need for a certain amount of diplomacy. There is still a great deal of distance between Harry and many family members, particularly his brother. No one wants a repeat of the Commonwealth Service.’
This refers to the Sussexes’ final official engagement at Westminster Abbey last March, which saw Harry and William barely acknowledge each other, such was the depth of their rift, which is far from healed.
It will be the first time Harry has seen any of his family since quitting royal duties to pursue lucrative business deals abroad.
Harry, Meghan and Archie have been living in North America, first Canada and then California, since November 2019.
While the couple returned to the UK in early March for a last round of official engagements and meetings, Archie – who will turn two in May – did not accompany them.
He has not seen any of his British relatives since he was six months old.