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‘Mixed year’ for Harry and Meghan amid celebrations and family troubles

The Sussexes got married, are having a baby and moving home, but Meghan’s relationship with her father remains unresolved.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex at the UK war memorial in Wellington, New Zealand (Dominic Lipinksi/PA)
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex at the UK war memorial in Wellington, New Zealand (Dominic Lipinksi/PA)

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have had a mixed year despite their life-changing celebrations, according to one royal author.

Former actress Meghan became an HRH and a fully signed-up member of The Firm after marrying Harry in a glittering ceremony in St George’s Chapel in Windsor.

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Newlyweds Harry and Meghan walk down the steps of St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle after their wedding (Ben Birchall/PA)

Then, just five months later, the couple announced that they were expecting their first child, with the royal baby due to arrive in the spring of 2019.

The Sussexes have picked out a new home and renovations will be arranged at Frogmore Cottage on the Windsor estate, where they will raise their son or daughter.

The Windsors’ new power couple have had much to do, organising their wedding, and now planning for their baby and new home.

Royal writer Penny Junor praised the duke and duchess for sprinkling fairy dust everywhere they go.

She cited Harry’s speech at the Invictus Games and Meghan’s Grenfell community cookbook project as key successes.

“Everywhere they go they sprinkle fairy dust.  They are both so easy and charming and tactile – and Harry so funny – that they are changing the face of royalty,” Junor said.

Junor added: “They had a great tour of Australia, Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand, and Harry’s very moving speech at the opening of the Invictus Games was a triumph. He just goes from strength to strength.

“And Meghan’s involvement in the Grenfell cookbook has made a big impression.  They are a great double act.”

But she warned that they appeared to have lost some of the public goodwill towards them in recent months.

Meghan’s estrangement from her father seems unresolved, with Thomas Markle expressing his distress at their rift in newspaper interviews.

Junor suggested that the duchess had made a mistake in failing to mend their relationship.

“I think it has been a mixed year for Harry and Meghan,” Junor told the Press Association.

They seem to have lost some of the goodwill and admiration that was so wholehearted when they married, and Meghan’s failure to sort things out with her father has been a huge mistake, in my view Penny Junor

“They seem to have lost some of the goodwill and admiration that was so wholehearted when they married, and Meghan’s failure to sort things out with her father has been a huge mistake, in my view.

“We obviously don’t know the truth about her relationship with him – it seems beyond extraordinary that Harry has never met him – but having him give interviews in which he says that she hasn’t spoken to him or made contact with him since the wedding is incredibly damaging.”

Mr Markle has given several interviews and more recently told the Mail on Sunday: “I have been frozen out and I can’t stay silent.

“I have made dozens of attempts to reach my daughter via text and letters, but she and Harry have put up a wall of silence.”

The duke and duchess have also faced reports of a rift between them and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

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The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex attend a National Service to mark the centenary of the Armistice at Westminster Abbey (Paul Grover/Daily Telegraph/PA)

As well as rumours regarding Meghan and Kate’s relationship, there were also reports of tension between William and Harry, with Harry reportedly accusing his older brother of trying to wreck his relationship with Meghan when he initially voiced concerns.

Junor described the reports as damaging, suggesting it had become a vicious cycle.

“The more the press write negative things, the less charming Harry is prepared to be and so the more negative the stories,” she said.

“It is all very sad because Harry and Meghan are a great double act.”

PA

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