Healing the rift between the Princes: The ex-Guards officer with the toughest peacekeeping mission


For more than 20 years, he has been entrusted by Prince Charles to act as an ‘older brother’ figure to his two sons, dutifully extracting Harry from nightclub scrapes or advising both of them on their military careers. 

Now former Welsh Guards officer Mark Dyer has a new role, The Mail on Sunday can reveal, acting as a pivotal go-between in the sensitive business of building bridges between Harry and William, particularly since the younger sibling turned his back on Royal life to live in Los Angeles.

This is a huge task. It is well established that misunderstandings, perceived snubs and pettiness on both sides caused a tragic rift between the once-close brothers.

Having served in the Army during the Troubles in Northern Ireland, peacekeeping is second nature to Dyer. The Princes are pictured above in a Commonwealth Day service in March

The trigger was William’s advice to Harry to ‘take things slow’ when he first dated Meghan Markle. 

And relations became so sour that they reportedly didn’t talk for weeks after Harry’s wedding. Then Megxit, and the way it was handled, left William and Charles devastated.

Having served in the Army during the Troubles in Northern Ireland, peacekeeping is second nature to Dyer.

A friend says: ‘Long transatlantic chats between Mark and Harry have started to reap healing dividends between the brothers. His advice to the Prince was ‘talk and listen’.’

Of course, that’s not always been easy, as the friend explains: ‘Both William and Harry are proud and angry.

‘Both felt let down by each other. William felt that Harry had deserted his family and his duty. Harry felt that William and Kate hadn’t welcomed Meghan into the fold.

Former Welsh Guards officer Mark Dyer has a new role, The Mail on Sunday can reveal, acting as a pivotal go-between in the sensitive business of building bridges between Harry and William. Mr Dyer and Prince Harry are pictured in 2016

Former Welsh Guards officer Mark Dyer has a new role, The Mail on Sunday can reveal, acting as a pivotal go-between in the sensitive business of building bridges between Harry and William. Mr Dyer and Prince Harry are pictured in 2016

‘However, both realised what was at stake and that they were in danger of losing each other. They are now talking, but it will take time to mend.’

Cheltenham College-educated Dyer, 53, known as Marko to friends, became a mentor to teenage Harry and William following the death of their mother, Princess Diana.

He helped plan gap years abroad, attended Harry’s Sandhurst passing-out ceremonies and was a driving force in establishing his Sentebale charity in Africa.

Described as ‘one of the few people who talks some sense into Harry’, he is godfather to the Prince’s son Archie, while in turn Harry is godfather to Dyer’s eight-year-son, Jasper, who was a pageboy at the Sussexes’ wedding.

After leaving the Army and working as Charles’s equerry, Dyer set up some London gastropubs, including The Sands End in Fulham, where Harry conducted his secret courtship with Meghan. 

The trigger was William's advice to Harry to 'take things slow' when he first dated Meghan Markle. And relations became so sour that they reportedly didn't talk for weeks after Harry's wedding. Then Megxit, and the way it was handled, left William and Charles devastated

The trigger was William’s advice to Harry to ‘take things slow’ when he first dated Meghan Markle. And relations became so sour that they reportedly didn’t talk for weeks after Harry’s wedding. Then Megxit, and the way it was handled, left William and Charles devastated

He now runs the Brook House in Parsons Green, where he dined with Harry the night before the Megxit deal was announced in January. Crucially, too, in terms of his rapprochement role, Dyer’s Texan wife Amanda, the daughter of a managing director of JP Morgan Securities, is liked by Meghan. 

She is said to have taken the actress under her wing, knowing first-hand what it is to marry into the British Establishment.

The friend adds: ‘Mark has never let the boys down. Privately, he can be an honest critic but he’s rock-solid in times of trouble.’

Unlike many others of Harry’s old set, Dyer survived Meghan’s ‘shuffling’ of the pack of her husband’s friends. Make no mistake, there is still a long way to go to bring the Princes together, but Dyer commands Harry’s respect and knows more intimately than most the details of how the brothers fell out. 

Certainly, Dyer will have told Harry that William’s advice about his relationship with Meghan when it was at an early stage was not about her character but more about Harry’s impetuous nature. Their family – on both Windsor and Spencer sides – is full of broken marriages and William was just advising caution.

After leaving the Army and working as Charles's equerry, Dyer set up some London gastropubs, including The Sands End in Fulham, where Harry conducted his secret courtship with Meghan. He is pictured above with Prince William in 2005

After leaving the Army and working as Charles’s equerry, Dyer set up some London gastropubs, including The Sands End in Fulham, where Harry conducted his secret courtship with Meghan. He is pictured above with Prince William in 2005

After Harry took the counsel badly, William turned to Diana’s younger brother Charles Spencer and he agreed to raise the subject with Harry. But he, too, was snubbed.

Other senior members of the family also ‘had concerns’. It was said that Prince Philip commented with characteristic bluntness: ‘One steps out with actresses. One doesn’t marry them.’

Matters were further complicated by plans for a 2017 ceremony at Althorp, the Spencer family home in Northamptonshire, to commemorate Princess Diana 20 years after her death. 

William and Earl Spencer had organised the private service, con-ducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, for close family, including Diana’s sisters. William wanted Prince George, then four, and Princess Charlotte, two, to attend.

By this point, Harry had already discussed marriage with Meghan and he wanted her to be with him. She travelled from Canada to Britain to be there but did not, in fact, attend. At the time, it was explained that her presence was not considered ‘appropriate’.

An upset Harry told Meghan of his family’s ‘warnings’ and a very definite sense of ‘us against the world’ became entrenched.

The couple felt that William and Kate had not ‘rolled out the red carpet’ for Meghan, who had hoped she would have an ally in the Duchess of Cambridge, a fellow outsider who had navigated the choppy waters of Royal life with aplomb. But the naturally cautious and private Kate did not respond to her enthusiastic overtures of friendship.

One incident illustrates one of the many minor misunderstandings that drove a wedge between the two families. Kate likes to pop out to shop discreetly on the Kings Road in Chelsea, being driven by a protection officer. 

But on learning that Meghan was planning a trip there, too, on the same day, Kate did not offer a lift – deciding that two of the world’s most famous women going shopping together might cause a scrum of paparazzi. Meghan saw this as a snub and a sign that she would never be welcome.

Then she learnt the Middletons were nervous about inviting her to Pippa’s wedding, fearing her first public appearance with Harry might overshadow the bride’s big day.

Eventually she was asked, but went to the evening party only. By now, a pattern was emerging.

Tensions heightened during the planning for Harry and Meghan’s wedding, often over little things.

Palace staff reported tantrums about the choice of tiara, requests to spray the Windsor chapel with French perfumier Diptyque’s scent, and bossy instructions sent at 5am by email.

Another sore subject was the question of a pre-nuptial agreement, with Harry vehemently resisting any suggestion of one.

And their perception of senior Royals pulling rank certainly rankled with Harry and Meghan.

Society bible Tatler last week reported that Meghan and Kate also fell out over whether bridesmaid Princess Charlotte should wear tights, with her mother unsuccessfully insisting it was protocol not to be bare-legged.

Kensington Palace denied this, saying the story was totally false.

What actually happened was slightly different. At a bridesmaid dress fitting, Kate was unhappy that the length of Charlotte’s hem was too short. She asked Meghan to organise a correction but the resulting interaction left Kate in tears.

That said, the atmosphere is colder between the two husbands than the wives.

The couple felt that William and Kate had not 'rolled out the red carpet' for Meghan, who had hoped she would have an ally in the Duchess of Cambridge, a fellow outsider who had navigated the choppy waters of Royal life with aplomb

The couple felt that William and Kate had not ‘rolled out the red carpet’ for Meghan, who had hoped she would have an ally in the Duchess of Cambridge, a fellow outsider who had navigated the choppy waters of Royal life with aplomb

I have been told by a courtier: ‘The two Duchesses are not best friends but they are professional. They do text each other. But they are very different characters. Catherine has tried to broker peace between the brothers as she knows how important their relationship is to both the family and the Monarchy.’

Perhaps there was something inevitable about William and Harry going their separate ways.

Since the day he was born 38 years ago next month, William has always been second in line to the throne. Whereas Harry, 35, has taken positions such as president of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust.

As one friend of William puts it: ‘Diana brought both boys up to be equal and that was all well and good, but they were and never will be equal.

‘William will be King. Harry won’t. Harry often finds it hard to accept that he isn’t as important as his older brother.’

An aide added: ‘William is very concerned with both his image and ‘Brand Cambridge’, although he’d never term it like that, and how in turn that may reflect on the Monarchy’s popularity as a whole.’

Certainly, that imperative has become much more important given the way his brother has walked out on the Royal Family.

Even so, there is still much to unite the Princes, which Mark Dyer will use in his bridge-building.

For example, both men have a passion about highlighting the importance of mental health.

Last week, William featured in a BBC1 documentary on the subject, while Harry is working with Oprah Winfrey on a mental-health documentary series for Apple TV.

How sadly ironic, therefore, that some members of the Royal Family have been worried about the mental health of both Meghan and Harry. 

It was significant that while on a tour of Africa after becoming a mother, a plaintive Meghan complained that ‘not many people have asked if I’m OK’.

If anyone can bring the Princes back together, it’s Mark Dyer, the man who Royal biographer Penny Junor said ‘stepped in after Diana’s death to be the glamorous, daring big brother Charles’s sons never had. The boys adored him and they are all firm friends to this day’.

Dyer has one other important link with the pair: he once briefly dated the other person Charles used ‘in loco parentis’ after Diana’s death, their trusty nanny Tiggy Legge-Bourke.

He also shares their love of Africa, having proposed to his future wife on holiday in Botswana while camping beside the Boteti River in the heart of the bush.

Over the coming months, he will need to draw on every drop of empathy to fulfil his role as peacemaker.

Healing the rift between the Princes: The ex-Guards officer with the toughest peacekeeping mission


For more than 20 years, he has been entrusted by Prince Charles to act as an ‘older brother’ figure to his two sons, dutifully extracting Harry from nightclub scrapes or advising both of them on their military careers. 

Now former Welsh Guards officer Mark Dyer has a new role, The Mail on Sunday can reveal, acting as a pivotal go-between in the sensitive business of building bridges between Harry and William, particularly since the younger sibling turned his back on Royal life to live in Los Angeles.

This is a huge task. It is well established that misunderstandings, perceived snubs and pettiness on both sides caused a tragic rift between the once-close brothers.

Having served in the Army during the Troubles in Northern Ireland, peacekeeping is second nature to Dyer. The Princes are pictured above in a Commonwealth Day service in March

The trigger was William’s advice to Harry to ‘take things slow’ when he first dated Meghan Markle. 

And relations became so sour that they reportedly didn’t talk for weeks after Harry’s wedding. Then Megxit, and the way it was handled, left William and Charles devastated.

Having served in the Army during the Troubles in Northern Ireland, peacekeeping is second nature to Dyer.

A friend says: ‘Long transatlantic chats between Mark and Harry have started to reap healing dividends between the brothers. His advice to the Prince was ‘talk and listen’.’

Of course, that’s not always been easy, as the friend explains: ‘Both William and Harry are proud and angry.

‘Both felt let down by each other. William felt that Harry had deserted his family and his duty. Harry felt that William and Kate hadn’t welcomed Meghan into the fold.

Former Welsh Guards officer Mark Dyer has a new role, The Mail on Sunday can reveal, acting as a pivotal go-between in the sensitive business of building bridges between Harry and William. Mr Dyer and Prince Harry are pictured in 2016

Former Welsh Guards officer Mark Dyer has a new role, The Mail on Sunday can reveal, acting as a pivotal go-between in the sensitive business of building bridges between Harry and William. Mr Dyer and Prince Harry are pictured in 2016

‘However, both realised what was at stake and that they were in danger of losing each other. They are now talking, but it will take time to mend.’

Cheltenham College-educated Dyer, 53, known as Marko to friends, became a mentor to teenage Harry and William following the death of their mother, Princess Diana.

He helped plan gap years abroad, attended Harry’s Sandhurst passing-out ceremonies and was a driving force in establishing his Sentebale charity in Africa.

Described as ‘one of the few people who talks some sense into Harry’, he is godfather to the Prince’s son Archie, while in turn Harry is godfather to Dyer’s eight-year-son, Jasper, who was a pageboy at the Sussexes’ wedding.

After leaving the Army and working as Charles’s equerry, Dyer set up some London gastropubs, including The Sands End in Fulham, where Harry conducted his secret courtship with Meghan. 

The trigger was William's advice to Harry to 'take things slow' when he first dated Meghan Markle. And relations became so sour that they reportedly didn't talk for weeks after Harry's wedding. Then Megxit, and the way it was handled, left William and Charles devastated

The trigger was William’s advice to Harry to ‘take things slow’ when he first dated Meghan Markle. And relations became so sour that they reportedly didn’t talk for weeks after Harry’s wedding. Then Megxit, and the way it was handled, left William and Charles devastated

He now runs the Brook House in Parsons Green, where he dined with Harry the night before the Megxit deal was announced in January. Crucially, too, in terms of his rapprochement role, Dyer’s Texan wife Amanda, the daughter of a managing director of JP Morgan Securities, is liked by Meghan. 

She is said to have taken the actress under her wing, knowing first-hand what it is to marry into the British Establishment.

The friend adds: ‘Mark has never let the boys down. Privately, he can be an honest critic but he’s rock-solid in times of trouble.’

Unlike many others of Harry’s old set, Dyer survived Meghan’s ‘shuffling’ of the pack of her husband’s friends. Make no mistake, there is still a long way to go to bring the Princes together, but Dyer commands Harry’s respect and knows more intimately than most the details of how the brothers fell out. 

Certainly, Dyer will have told Harry that William’s advice about his relationship with Meghan when it was at an early stage was not about her character but more about Harry’s impetuous nature. Their family – on both Windsor and Spencer sides – is full of broken marriages and William was just advising caution.

After leaving the Army and working as Charles's equerry, Dyer set up some London gastropubs, including The Sands End in Fulham, where Harry conducted his secret courtship with Meghan. He is pictured above with Prince William in 2005

After leaving the Army and working as Charles’s equerry, Dyer set up some London gastropubs, including The Sands End in Fulham, where Harry conducted his secret courtship with Meghan. He is pictured above with Prince William in 2005

After Harry took the counsel badly, William turned to Diana’s younger brother Charles Spencer and he agreed to raise the subject with Harry. But he, too, was snubbed.

Other senior members of the family also ‘had concerns’. It was said that Prince Philip commented with characteristic bluntness: ‘One steps out with actresses. One doesn’t marry them.’

Matters were further complicated by plans for a 2017 ceremony at Althorp, the Spencer family home in Northamptonshire, to commemorate Princess Diana 20 years after her death. 

William and Earl Spencer had organised the private service, con-ducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, for close family, including Diana’s sisters. William wanted Prince George, then four, and Princess Charlotte, two, to attend.

By this point, Harry had already discussed marriage with Meghan and he wanted her to be with him. She travelled from Canada to Britain to be there but did not, in fact, attend. At the time, it was explained that her presence was not considered ‘appropriate’.

An upset Harry told Meghan of his family’s ‘warnings’ and a very definite sense of ‘us against the world’ became entrenched.

The couple felt that William and Kate had not ‘rolled out the red carpet’ for Meghan, who had hoped she would have an ally in the Duchess of Cambridge, a fellow outsider who had navigated the choppy waters of Royal life with aplomb. But the naturally cautious and private Kate did not respond to her enthusiastic overtures of friendship.

One incident illustrates one of the many minor misunderstandings that drove a wedge between the two families. Kate likes to pop out to shop discreetly on the Kings Road in Chelsea, being driven by a protection officer. 

But on learning that Meghan was planning a trip there, too, on the same day, Kate did not offer a lift – deciding that two of the world’s most famous women going shopping together might cause a scrum of paparazzi. Meghan saw this as a snub and a sign that she would never be welcome.

Then she learnt the Middletons were nervous about inviting her to Pippa’s wedding, fearing her first public appearance with Harry might overshadow the bride’s big day.

Eventually she was asked, but went to the evening party only. By now, a pattern was emerging.

Tensions heightened during the planning for Harry and Meghan’s wedding, often over little things.

Palace staff reported tantrums about the choice of tiara, requests to spray the Windsor chapel with French perfumier Diptyque’s scent, and bossy instructions sent at 5am by email.

Another sore subject was the question of a pre-nuptial agreement, with Harry vehemently resisting any suggestion of one.

And their perception of senior Royals pulling rank certainly rankled with Harry and Meghan.

Society bible Tatler last week reported that Meghan and Kate also fell out over whether bridesmaid Princess Charlotte should wear tights, with her mother unsuccessfully insisting it was protocol not to be bare-legged.

Kensington Palace denied this, saying the story was totally false.

What actually happened was slightly different. At a bridesmaid dress fitting, Kate was unhappy that the length of Charlotte’s hem was too short. She asked Meghan to organise a correction but the resulting interaction left Kate in tears.

That said, the atmosphere is colder between the two husbands than the wives.

The couple felt that William and Kate had not 'rolled out the red carpet' for Meghan, who had hoped she would have an ally in the Duchess of Cambridge, a fellow outsider who had navigated the choppy waters of Royal life with aplomb

The couple felt that William and Kate had not ‘rolled out the red carpet’ for Meghan, who had hoped she would have an ally in the Duchess of Cambridge, a fellow outsider who had navigated the choppy waters of Royal life with aplomb

I have been told by a courtier: ‘The two Duchesses are not best friends but they are professional. They do text each other. But they are very different characters. Catherine has tried to broker peace between the brothers as she knows how important their relationship is to both the family and the Monarchy.’

Perhaps there was something inevitable about William and Harry going their separate ways.

Since the day he was born 38 years ago next month, William has always been second in line to the throne. Whereas Harry, 35, has taken positions such as president of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust.

As one friend of William puts it: ‘Diana brought both boys up to be equal and that was all well and good, but they were and never will be equal.

‘William will be King. Harry won’t. Harry often finds it hard to accept that he isn’t as important as his older brother.’

An aide added: ‘William is very concerned with both his image and ‘Brand Cambridge’, although he’d never term it like that, and how in turn that may reflect on the Monarchy’s popularity as a whole.’

Certainly, that imperative has become much more important given the way his brother has walked out on the Royal Family.

Even so, there is still much to unite the Princes, which Mark Dyer will use in his bridge-building.

For example, both men have a passion about highlighting the importance of mental health.

Last week, William featured in a BBC1 documentary on the subject, while Harry is working with Oprah Winfrey on a mental-health documentary series for Apple TV.

How sadly ironic, therefore, that some members of the Royal Family have been worried about the mental health of both Meghan and Harry. 

It was significant that while on a tour of Africa after becoming a mother, a plaintive Meghan complained that ‘not many people have asked if I’m OK’.

If anyone can bring the Princes back together, it’s Mark Dyer, the man who Royal biographer Penny Junor said ‘stepped in after Diana’s death to be the glamorous, daring big brother Charles’s sons never had. The boys adored him and they are all firm friends to this day’.

Dyer has one other important link with the pair: he once briefly dated the other person Charles used ‘in loco parentis’ after Diana’s death, their trusty nanny Tiggy Legge-Bourke.

He also shares their love of Africa, having proposed to his future wife on holiday in Botswana while camping beside the Boteti River in the heart of the bush.

Over the coming months, he will need to draw on every drop of empathy to fulfil his role as peacemaker.

Handshakes and hugs are out – here’s the new global etiquette from the Thai wai to the Zambian clap


Nice to meet you: Handshakes and hugs are out — so what’s the new global etiquette?

  • Handshakes and hugs were stopped when the coronavirus pandemic took hold
  • But there are alternative greetings – and not only the ‘Wuhan shake’ foot-tap
  • There’s the Thai Wai, the Hawaiian shaka sign as well as the formal Japanese bow 
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

Arriving at the Prince’s Trust Awards in March, Prince Charles was about to go in for a handshake when, mindful of social-distancing rules, he quickly changed tack.

He offered a namaste instead, putting palms together with his fingers pointing up — the traditional Hindu salutation.

Handshakes and hugs were abandoned overnight when the pandemic took hold. 

New normal? In Japan, people tend to greet one another with a formal bow

Such changes in greetings may mean air kisses on an eventual trip to France are met with a Gallic shrug, and the Maori hongi, where people press their noses and foreheads together, is consigned to history.

Anthony Fauci, a leading U.S. public health official, has said: ‘I don’t think we should ever shake hands again.’

It’s a hard habit to break. The humble handshake dates back to Ancient Greek and Roman times, and featured in their art as a symbol of peace.

It’s believed it was born out of distrust, however. Romans grasped each other’s forearms to check there were no daggers hidden up their sleeves. But there are alternatives — and not only the ‘Wuhan shake’ foot-tap.

The Thai wai, for example, involves bowing your head with your palms together, as a gesture of openness. It’s popular in south-east Asia and is used in prayer and dance.

Meanwhile, the formal bow was introduced to Japan between the 5th and 7th centuries, and remains de rigueur in a country that prides itself on etiquette.

At the Prince’s Trust Awards in March, Prince Charles offered a namaste rather than a handshake

At the Prince’s Trust Awards in March, Prince Charles offered a namaste rather than a handshake 

We could adopt this for formal settings, with the degree of bow matching the level of respect you feel for one another.

For a spiritual symbol, look to the Middle East. Place your right hand on your heart, sacred in Islam as the seat of the soul, and say, ‘As-salaam alaikum’ (peace be upon you).

The Hawaiian shaka sign, with the three middle fingers curled and thumb and little finger extended, could even be adopted beyond the surfing community, who know it as meaning ‘hang loose’.

Or there’s the Zambian ‘cup and clap’ — cup your hands together and clap a couple of times while saying, ‘Muli bwanji’ (how are you?).

But back to the namaste. In Sanskrit, it means ‘the highest in me salutes the highest in you’. It’s appropriate at a time when we’re meant to be appreciating each other more, while keeping our distance. Prince Charles may have set a trend.  

Friends claim Meghan and Harry WILL pay for their own security


Friends of the Sussexes have refuted reports that Prince Charles is footing the bill for Harry and Meghan’s security costs in Los Angeles. 

They instead allege that the couple are being protected by a private security team already in place at Tyler Perry’s mansion in Los Angeles.  

An insider told the Daily Mail earlier this week that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex could only afford to start paying off their £2.4million bill for Frogmore Cottage after Prince Charles had agreed to foot their astronomical security costs in the US. 

A friend of the couple has now claimed that the Sussexes will pay for any security measures out of their own pocket. 

The couple have been spotted only a handful of times since their move to Los Angeles, first volunteering for a local charity dropping off food to locals who are more at-risk of catching coronavirus (pictured), as well as taking their beloved dogs out for a walk

Recently it was reported that the couple began paying back the money spent on Frogmore Cottage (pictured) in April

Recently it was reported that the couple began paying back the money spent on Frogmore Cottage (pictured) in April 

The Sussexes had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt, a source told the Daily Mail

The Sussexes had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt, a source told the Daily Mail 

Meghan and Harry have told their friends that any security team they do hire, they will pay for themselves, the source told The Daily Beast, suggesting that the couple had yet to secure their own permanent security team. 

Instead, it’s been claimed the couple and their young son are living under the protection of security already in place at the $18 million mansion.  

According to the anonymous source, the couple are not ‘asking for any special treatment’ with regard to their security situation, and ‘have not received any’. 

DailyMailTV revealed earlier this month that the couple have been holed up in a Beverly Hills mansion owned by Hollywood tycoon Tyler Perry with their son Archie since mid-March, after moving over from Canada.  

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been living in this ultra-luxury Beverly Hills hideout that belongs to Hollywood tycoon Tyler Perry, DailyMailTV exclusively revealed

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have been living in this ultra-luxury Beverly Hills hideout that belongs to Hollywood tycoon Tyler Perry, DailyMailTV exclusively revealed 

The source also said the Sussexes have experienced ‘unimaginable’ levels of intrusion from the press while living in the Beverly Hills mansion during the coronavirus pandemic, including paparazzi-operated drones illegally flying within 20 feet of their house to snap photographs. 

At least five such incidents have been reported to the LAPD.

It is not known whether Harry, 35, and Meghan, 38, are renting Tyler’s property or staying there as guests, but there is no record of the mansion having been sold. 

The couple have been spotted only a handful of times since their move to Los Angeles, first volunteering for a local charity dropping off food to locals who are more at-risk of catching coronavirus, as well as taking their beloved dogs out for a walk 

The Duke and Duchess were unexpectedly stripped of their Metropolitan Police security team after their move to North America following their announcement they were stepping down as senior members of the Royal Family last year. 

Matters were complicated when authorities in Canada, where they were living at the time, made clear they would no longer support Britain in providing round-the-clock protection after the couple stood down as working royals. 

The Sussexes’ decision to flee to LA, which made the situation even more complicated and costly, saw the Home Secretary step in, forcing them to back down.

That meant hiring private security guards at an estimated cost of up to £4million a year, which had not been budgeted for by the couple.

Harry and Meghan pledged to reimburse taxpayers for renovating their briefly lived-in Windsor home

Harry and Meghan pledged to reimburse taxpayers for renovating their briefly lived-in Windsor home

As a result, it was understood that they had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt. 

The couple are already being heavily funded by the future king for the first year of their new life until they start earning their own income.

Recently it was reported that the couple began paying back the money spent on Frogmore in April. They gave up their Met Police protection around the same time.

The Sussexes are said to be paying monthly instalments of almost £18,000 – a combination of rent for the property and an unspecified payment towards the building costs.

Shedding light on the deal, a source told the Daily Mail: ‘They had fully expected that British taxpayers would continue to foot the bill for their protection but then the rug was pulled from under their feet and they had to ask Prince Charles to step in. That’s the reason why they are now able to start paying back the Queen and the Crown Estate, who met the cost of the building work out of public funds.’

The source also claimed the couple’s final bills soared because they included costly designs for work that wasn’t even carried out.

‘One of the biggest costs at Frogmore was that they flew in a designer from the US to design the garden,’ the source revealed. ‘Meghan also wanted a tennis court. There are already tennis courts nearby in Home Park. But it would have meant them coming out of the garden and being seen, which she didn’t like.’

A source who knows the couple well said: ‘They felt that Frogmore and the money spent on it was no different from any other arrangement involving the main home of a member of the Royal Family.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle celebrated their second wedding anniversary with an LA favourite - Mexican food and margaritas, royal biographer Omid Scobie has revealed (seen during a charity Zoom call this month)

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle celebrated their second wedding anniversary with an LA favourite – Mexican food and margaritas, royal biographer Omid Scobie has revealed (seen during a charity Zoom call this month)

‘But because it was Harry and Meghan, it was always being used as a stick to beat them with. Paying back the money was one of the first decisions they took. They knew that if they did, no one would have the right to do that any more.’

Meghan and Harry recently celebrated their second wedding anniversary with an LA favourite – Mexican food and margaritas, royal biographer Omid Scobie revealed. The couple reportedly enjoyed a quiet day of celebrations together, joining family and friends on Zoom.

British journalist Omid, who has co-written their upcoming biography Finding Freedom, revealed the couple ‘reminisced about what a beautiful and magical day’ their wedding was. 

The couple’s new bombshell biography Finding Freedom set to be released on August 11 will reveal that it was Prince Harry who chose to quit the Royal Family, and not Meghan. 

Harry, 35, is said to be angry at the term ‘Megxit’ because it made it sound like the decision to break away from the Firm was Meghan’s alone, a source told The Sun.  

Tatler clashes with Kensington Palace over story claiming Kate Middleton feels ‘exhausted and trapped’ by her post-Megxit workload – with the magazine backing the piece despite royal insistence the claims are ‘false’ 

Tatler have clashed with Kensington Palace over the magazine’s story claiming that Kate Middleton was feeling ‘exhausted and trapped’ by her post-Megxit workload.

The Duchess of Cambridge, 38, and Prince William, 37, have made a host of virtual appearances during the coronavirus crisis as they isolate with their children, Prince George, six, Princess Charlotte, five, and Prince Louis, two, in Anmer Hall in Norfolk. 

Sources claiming to be friends of the couple told Anna Pasternak at Tatler magazine that Kate was ‘fuming’ with the heavy workload after Megxit, revealing: ‘William and Catherine really wanted to be hands-on parents and the Sussexes have effectively thrown their three children under a bus.’ 

A Kensington Palace spokesperson dismissed the claims, saying: ‘This story contains a swathe of inaccuracies and false misrepresentations which were not put to Kensington Palace prior to publication.’

It prompted a Tatler spokesperson to add today: ‘Tatler’s Editor-in-Chief Richard Dennen stands behind the reporting of Anna Pasternak and her sources.

‘Kensington Palace knew we were running the “Catherine the Great” cover months ago and we asked them to work together on it. The fact they are denying they ever knew is categorically false.’ 

Royal fans have rallied around Kate Middleton, 38, after an anonymous source told Tatler  the Duchess of Cambridge was 'exhausted' and felt 'trapped' by her enormous workload after Megxit

Royal fans have rallied around Kate Middleton, 38, after an anonymous source told Tatler  the Duchess of Cambridge was ‘exhausted’ and felt ‘trapped’ by her enormous workload after Megxit

It comes after reports yesterday that Kate was ‘furious’ about her ‘enormous’ workload after Prince Harry, 35, and Meghan Markle’s, 38, departure from the royal family in March. 

The insider went on to call Meghan and Prince Harry ‘so selfish’ for their behaviour, adding that their decision would have profound impacts on the Cambridge’s family life.

They explained: ‘There goes their morning school runs as the responsibilities on them now are enormous.’

Another friend of the Duchess explained that Kate has been left fuming over the increase in workload.

Many royal followers threw their support behind Kate after anonymous sources said she was 'furious' about her workload

Many royal followers threw their support behind Kate after anonymous sources said she was ‘furious’ about her workload 

‘Lockdown has brought the best out of William and Kate’, royal expert reveals 

Phil Dampier, author of Royally Suited: Harry and Meghan in Their Own Words, told FEMAIL: ‘I think the lockdown has brought out the best in William and Kate.

‘Without Prince Harry and Meghan on the scene, they have a big responsibility, especially with the Queen not out and about, Charles and Camilla in their seventies, Princess Anne…Older royals are restricted with lockdown.

‘I’m sure Kate and William will be out and about soon. 

‘Most people think they’ve had a ‘good war’ with the crisis, they’ve come across extremely well and brought a lot of comfort to people with their video messages.

‘Kate has probably quite enjoyed it, in a funny sort of way, because she has been able to spend more time with the children up in the Norfolk home which is their favourite place, enjoying family time together. 

‘She’s had the best of both worlds. 

‘They’ve also been very good at providing photo calls for the children. 

‘It’s almost like we’ve been eavesdropping on them as a family, and seeing into their lives.’

They said: ‘Kate is furious about the larger workload. Of course she’s smiling and dressing appropriately but she doesn’t want this. 

‘She’s working as hard as a top CEO, who has to be wheeled out all the time, without the benefits of boundaries and plenty of holidays.’ 

Kate, whose manners are described as impeccable, is also said to have a ‘ruthless survival streak’ that makes her ‘well suited’ to the House of Windsor.’ 

One member of the royal set commented that Kate is ‘impenetrable’ and there is ‘nothing to dislike or like.’ 

Tatler stood behind the reporting of their sources and reporter Anna Pasternak today. (The full feature in the July/August issue of Tatler available via digital download and on newsstands Thursday 28th May)

Tatler stood behind the reporting of their sources and reporter Anna Pasternak today. (The full feature in the July/August issue of Tatler available via digital download and on newsstands Thursday 28th May)

They added that she ‘keeps her head down’ because she is aware of the greatness of the ‘prize’ of becoming Queen.

The insider added that Kate models herself after the Queen, and even now speaks like the Queen.  

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, experts have spoken about how Prince William and Kate have lead the royal family’s efforts to support the nation. 

Earlier this month, Katie Nicholl revealed how the couple have been ‘stepping up to the plate’ amid the pandemic. 

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex stepped back from royal duty at the end of March, and have been living in an $18 million mansion in Beverly Hills since

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex stepped back from royal duty at the end of March, and have been living in an $18 million mansion in Beverly Hills since

Royal fans rush to defend Kate Middleton 

Royal fans have thrown their support behind Kate Middleton after anonymous sources told Tatler magazine that she feels ‘exhausted and trapped’ by her post-Megxit workload.

One tweeted: ‘She is beautiful lady inside, out who truly loves all her family and loves to help all of Britain, the people, dogs, gardening, playing outdoors with her kids, supporting the Queen.’

Another fan commented on Instagram: ‘She is the true embodiment of class. In all her time as a member of the royal family she has represented the monarchy, her causes and patronages with grace and deference. 

‘She knows that it’s not about her, she is a participant in a system that has prevailed for centuries and will continue in succession through her children and, even so, she manages to shine. That is the epitome of greatness.’

One added: ‘She’s done well, even though she comes from a modest background , she’s shown loyalty to crown and country and was never involved in horrible family dramas or super low class scandals.’

‘The Duchess has really risen to the occasion during the pandemic,’ another wrote. 

Royal fans threw their support behind the Duchess of Cambridge, with one calling her 'the epitome of class'

Royal fans threw their support behind the Duchess of Cambridge, with one calling her ‘the epitome of class’

She told ET: ‘We’re seeing them letting their guard down and that is a result of what we are going through.’

She said the Cambridges had ‘really stepped up to the plate’ and had been providing a ‘dose of entertainment’ by sharing snaps and videos of the Cambridge children.

She revealed: ‘It’s uplifting for Britain, particularly for royalists, to see what the future of the royal family is going to look like. The royal family has gone to great lengths not to be seen to be aloof or distant or unrelatable.’  

One insider declared Prince Harry and Meghan had been 'so selfish' in their decision to step back from royal life

One insider declared Prince Harry and Meghan had been ‘so selfish’ in their decision to step back from royal life 

It’s not the first time that Prince William and Kate have been praised for their efforts during the pandemic.

Speaking in April, royal expert Roya Nikkhah told BBC Breakfast how Kate and Prince William are ‘making sure they’re visible’ and ‘sharing personal insights’ to ensure the monarchy stays relevant amid the coronavirus crisis,

Roya explained: ‘The very clever thing the Cambridges have always done is they’ve always given us just enough of a little insight into their personal life, what it’s like at home with George, Charlotte and Louis, so people understand that they are going through similar things to what everyone else is going through.’

The royal expert revealed: ‘Kate and William are making sure they’re visible, and that’s been the case for the royal family since the start of the outbreak.

Another insider said that while Kate is 'smiling', on the inside she is 'furious' about the increased workload on her family

Another insider said that while Kate is ‘smiling’, on the inside she is ‘furious’ about the increased workload on her family 

Experts previously revealed how Prince William and Kate would lead the royal family’s efforts to support the nation amid the coronavirus crisis.

Speaking to Australian website 9Honey, Katie Nicholl said the Duke and Duchess were the ‘best placed’ members of the royal family to be ‘pillars of support’ for the nation at the moment.  

Read the full feature in the July/August issue of Tatler available via digital download and on newsstands Thursday 28th May 

Inside Prince Charles’ office at Birkhall


A snap shared of Prince Charles during an interview yesterday has offered royal fans another glimpse of the royal’s Scottish home.  

The photograph, posted on the Clarence House Instagram account, shows the Prince of Wales, 71, sitting at his desk at Birkhall, his home on the Queen’s Balmoral estate in Aberdeenshire, as he spoke with Alan Titchmarsh for a Classic FM yesterday.

While the study has been seen in several images and videos of Prince Charles as he works from home during lockdown, it is not thought the study has been seen from this angle before.

It offers a glimpse into the private life of the prince and the objects and personal treasures he holds dear.

The prince pays tributes to his family with several framed photographs of Camilla, the Queen Mother and a separate snap of a baby, thought to be his youngest grandson Prince George, now six. 

Meanwhile the room also features a series of rainbow paintings, thought to have been crafted by his grandchildren Princess Charlotte, five, and Prince Louis, two. 

Charles’ favourite things: 1. Prince George photograph; 2. Paintings from his grandchildren; 3. Portrait of Camilla; 4. Photograph of the Queen Mother; 5. Religious token of Mary, Joseph and Jesus; 6. Personalised stationery; 7. Fancy iPad set-up; 8. Gold leaf ornaments; 9. Huge stack of CDs and CD player; 11. Large green leaf plant

1. Photograph of Prince George

Pride and joy: A glimpse of a baby photo is visible to the left of Prince Charles.  It is thought to be of Prince George, Prince William and Kate Middleton's son.

Pride and joy: A glimpse of a baby photo is visible to the left of Prince Charles. It is thought to be of Prince George, Prince William and Kate Middleton's son.

Pride and joy: A glimpse of a baby photo is visible to the left of Prince Charles.  It is thought to be of Prince George, Prince William and Kate Middleton’s son

On the side board to the left of Prince Charles, there is a large framed photograph of a young blonde boy, wearing red shorts and a white to. 

While it is difficult to see the face of the child, Prince George is known to have worn this outfit on the day of his sister Princess Charlotte’s christening in 2015.

2. Rainbow paintings from the grandchildren 

There are several paintings of rainbows decorating the sideboard of Charles' study. These are believed to have been painted by Prince George, six, and Princess Charlotte, five

There are several paintings of rainbows decorating the sideboard of Charles' study. These are believed to have been painted by Prince George, six, and Princess Charlotte, five

There are several paintings of rainbows decorating the sideboard of Charles’ study. These are believed to have been painted by Prince George, six, and Princess Charlotte, five 

There are a host of rainbow paintings to the left of Prince Charles, which are thought to have been crafted by Prince Charles’ grandchildren, Prince George, six, Princess Charlotte, five, and Prince Louis, two. 

Kate Middleton, 38, shared snaps of Prince Louis painting rainbows to celebrate the NHS for his second birthday earlier this year. 

Millions of children across the UK have been painting the rainbows, which have been springing up in windows across the country after schools closed in response to the coronavirus outbreak.

They originated in Italy and quickly spread to the UK, where they are seen as a message of hope and something fun for children spot on their daily hour of exercise.

3. Camilla portrait

Among the photographs decorating Prince Charles' desk is a black-and-white snap of his wife Camilla wearing a headscarf

Among the photographs decorating Prince Charles’ desk is a black-and-white snap of his wife Camilla wearing a headscarf

Among the photographs on Prince Charles’ desk are several snaps of his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall. 

One of the largest images is a black-and-white portrait of Camilla wearing a headscarf. It is unknown when the photograph was taken. 

Camilla was worn headscarfs on several royal tours, including in Saudi Arabia in 2013 and Abu Dhabi in 2016.

4. Photograph of the Queen Mother

Another image on the desk is a photograph of the Queen Mother, whom Prince Charles enjoyed a close relationship with

Another image on the desk is a photograph of the Queen Mother, whom Prince Charles enjoyed a close relationship with 

Another image taking pride-of-place on Prince Charles’ desk is a snap of his grandmother, the Queen Mother. 

Prince Charles as spoken openly of his affection for his ‘magical’ grandmother, with whom he once said he enjoyed the closest family relationship. 

From his earliest years, she was a constant, guiding force in his life. She acted as his counsellor, confidante and mentor, advising him in both private and state matters. 

5. Religious token of Mary, Joseph and Jesus

Tucked in front of the family portraits is a small religious token, a piece of Christian artwork of Mary, Joseph and Jesus

Tucked in front of the family portraits is a small religious token, a piece of Christian artwork of Mary, Joseph and Jesus 

Alongside the photographs on the desk is a small religious token – a portrait of Joseph, Mary and Jesus.

Prince Charles has taken a deep interest in religions over the years, including Christianity.

He has attended Catholic masses and has studied Judaism as well as Islam. 

The Prince also admires the Orthodox Church, and has made regular spiritual retreats to stay in the monasteries of Mount Athos, the Greek republic run by 2,000 monks. 

6. Charles personal stationery with green letterhead 

Alongside the papers strewn across the desk was a letter stand, in which the royal's personalised stationery could be seen

Alongside the papers strewn across the desk was a letter stand, in which the royal’s personalised stationery could be seen 

Among the papers strewn across the desk is a letter stand, where the royal’s personalised stationery can be seen.

As well as large note cards, envelopes can also be seen in the stand.  

7. Fancy iPad stand 

Prince Charles could be seen speaking with presenter Alan Titchmarsh over a video-call, balancing his tablet on a new iPad stand, which has not been seen in previous photographs of his meetings throughout lockdown

Prince Charles could be seen speaking with presenter Alan Titchmarsh over a video-call, balancing his tablet on a new iPad stand, which has not been seen in previous photographs of his meetings throughout lockdown

In April, Prince Charles told how he was ‘enormously touched’ to have been asked to launch the 4,000-bed temporary facility at the ExCel convention centre in East via video-link from his Scottish home at Birkhall.

But some appeared distracted by the royal’s makeshift tablet stand after the royal balance his iPad on several boxes, with the help of some books to keep the tablet in place while he spoke.

At some point during the last two months, the royal has invested in an iPad stand to hold such virtual meetings. 

8. Gold or gold-plated desk ornaments

At the bottom right hand side of the frame are a number of desk ornaments. 

The restricted view makes them difficult to identify however one appears to be a covered dish with ornate vine detailing. It has been seen in previous photographs of the office, but from a different angle  

9. Stacks of CDs and CD player 

Prince Charles has often spoken about his love of music. In the window of the royal's study, there is a with a CD-player and several large stacks of CD-roms

Prince Charles has often spoken about his love of music. In the window of the royal’s study, there is a with a CD-player and several large stacks of CD-roms 

In the window of Prince Charles’ study, a CD player and several large stacks of CD-roms can be seen. 

Prince Charles, who learnt the cello and trumpet at boarding school, has been vocal about the role music has played in his life, previously listing favourites ranging from classical composers to 1930s dance bands and singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen. 

The royal has often spoken about his love of classical music and spoke with Classic Fm about his passion in a lengthy interview last night.

During the interview, he revealed how his grandmother Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, inspired his love of music. 

Prince Charles said he first became aware of the ‘inspirational’ performing arts when attending the Bolshoi Ballet’s The Fountain of Bakhchisarai in 1956.

Describing it as an unforgettable experience, the young prince attended the Covent Garden-based performance with his grandmother. 

 10. Large plants 

 In the corner of the study is a large green plant, with leaves bending into the royal’s study.

 A keen gardener, Charles has taken great pride in ‘enhancing’ the grounds that were lovingly cultivated by Birkhall’s previous resident, the Queen Mother. Speaking about the garden in a 2013 Country Life interview, Charles described it as a ‘special place’. 

11. Comfy green sofa

Behind Prince Charles’ desk is a set of large, comfortable-looking green sofa and a cosy armchair. 

It appears to offer a place in the room to relax and recline when not working at the desk, or perhaps a space to take meetings. 

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Frogmore deal revealed


Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Frogmore deal revealed: Duke and Duchess of Sussex began paying back £2.4m for cottage renovations after Prince Charles agreed to foot the bill for their security in US

  • Harry and Meghan pledged to reimburse taxpayers for renovating Frogmore 
  • They hired private security guards at an estimated cost of up to £4million a year 
  • As a result, they had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security  

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex could afford to start paying off their £2.4million bill for Frogmore Cottage only after Prince Charles agreed to foot their astronomical security costs in the US.

Harry and Meghan pledged to reimburse taxpayers for renovating their briefly lived-in Windsor home, which they have insisted on keeping as a British base despite their move to Los Angeles, as part of their deal to quit as working royals.

But they were left apparently cash-strapped after being unexpectedly stripped of their Metropolitan Police security team following their decision to relocate to North America earlier this year, says a source.

Harry, in particular, had believed ‘up until the very last minute’ that he would be allowed to keep them because of his position in the order of succession and the threat to him as a former frontline Army officer.

Harry and Meghan pledged to reimburse taxpayers for renovating their briefly lived-in Windsor home

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex could afford to start paying off their £2.4million bill for Frogmore Cottage only after Prince Charles agreed to foot their astronomical security costs in the US

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex could afford to start paying off their £2.4million bill for Frogmore Cottage only after Prince Charles agreed to foot their astronomical security costs in the US

But the issue became a political football after the authorities in Canada, where they were living at the time, made clear they would no longer support Britain in providing round-the-clock protection after the couple stood down as working royals. 

The Sussexes’ decision to flee to LA, which made the situation even more complicated and costly, saw the Home Secretary step in, forcing them to back down.

That meant hiring private security guards at an estimated cost of up to £4million a year, which had not been budgeted for by the couple. 

As a result, they had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt.

The couple are already being heavily funded by the future king for the first year of their new life until they start earning their own income.

Recently it was reported that the couple began paying back the money spent on Frogmore in April. They gave up their Met Police protection around the same time.

The Sussexes had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt

The Sussexes had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt

Prince Harry arrives at Victoria International Airport in British Columbia, Canada

Prince Harry arrives at Victoria International Airport in British Columbia, Canada

The Sussexes are said to be paying monthly instalments of almost £18,000 – a combination of rent for the property and an unspecified payment towards the building costs.

Shedding light on the deal, a source told the Daily Mail: ‘They had fully expected that British taxpayers would continue to foot the bill for their protection but then the rug was pulled from under their feet and they had to ask Prince Charles to step in. That’s the reason why they are now able to start paying back the Queen and the Crown Estate, who met the cost of the building work out of public funds.’

The source also claimed the couple’s final bills soared because they included costly designs for work that wasn’t even carried out.

‘One of the biggest costs at Frogmore was that they flew in a designer from the US to design the garden,’ the source revealed. ‘Meghan also wanted a tennis court. There are already tennis courts nearby in Home Park. But it would have meant them coming out of the garden and being seen, which she didn’t like.’

A source who knows the couple well said: ‘They felt that Frogmore and the money spent on it was no different from any other arrangement involving the main home of a member of the Royal Family.

‘But because it was Harry and Meghan, it was always being used as a stick to beat them with. Paying back the money was one of the first decisions they took. They knew that if they did, no one would have the right to do that any more.’

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Frogmore deal revealed


Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Frogmore deal revealed: Duke and Duchess of Sussex began paying back £2.4m for cottage renovations after Prince Charles agreed to foot the bill for their security in US

  • Harry and Meghan pledged to reimburse taxpayers for renovating Frogmore 
  • They hired private security guards at an estimated cost of up to £4million a year 
  • As a result, they had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security  

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex could afford to start paying off their £2.4million bill for Frogmore Cottage only after Prince Charles agreed to foot their astronomical security costs in the US.

Harry and Meghan pledged to reimburse taxpayers for renovating their briefly lived-in Windsor home, which they have insisted on keeping as a British base despite their move to Los Angeles, as part of their deal to quit as working royals.

But they were left apparently cash-strapped after being unexpectedly stripped of their Metropolitan Police security team following their decision to relocate to North America earlier this year, says a source.

Harry, in particular, had believed ‘up until the very last minute’ that he would be allowed to keep them because of his position in the order of succession and the threat to him as a former frontline Army officer.

Harry and Meghan pledged to reimburse taxpayers for renovating their briefly lived-in Windsor home

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex could afford to start paying off their £2.4million bill for Frogmore Cottage only after Prince Charles agreed to foot their astronomical security costs in the US

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex could afford to start paying off their £2.4million bill for Frogmore Cottage only after Prince Charles agreed to foot their astronomical security costs in the US

But the issue became a political football after the authorities in Canada, where they were living at the time, made clear they would no longer support Britain in providing round-the-clock protection after the couple stood down as working royals. 

The Sussexes’ decision to flee to LA, which made the situation even more complicated and costly, saw the Home Secretary step in, forcing them to back down.

That meant hiring private security guards at an estimated cost of up to £4million a year, which had not been budgeted for by the couple. 

As a result, they had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt.

The couple are already being heavily funded by the future king for the first year of their new life until they start earning their own income.

Recently it was reported that the couple began paying back the money spent on Frogmore in April. They gave up their Met Police protection around the same time.

The Sussexes had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt

The Sussexes had to ask Prince Charles to bear the cost of their security if they were to have any chance of clearing their Frogmore debt

Prince Harry arrives at Victoria International Airport in British Columbia, Canada

Prince Harry arrives at Victoria International Airport in British Columbia, Canada

The Sussexes are said to be paying monthly instalments of almost £18,000 – a combination of rent for the property and an unspecified payment towards the building costs.

Shedding light on the deal, a source told the Daily Mail: ‘They had fully expected that British taxpayers would continue to foot the bill for their protection but then the rug was pulled from under their feet and they had to ask Prince Charles to step in. That’s the reason why they are now able to start paying back the Queen and the Crown Estate, who met the cost of the building work out of public funds.’

The source also claimed the couple’s final bills soared because they included costly designs for work that wasn’t even carried out.

‘One of the biggest costs at Frogmore was that they flew in a designer from the US to design the garden,’ the source revealed. ‘Meghan also wanted a tennis court. There are already tennis courts nearby in Home Park. But it would have meant them coming out of the garden and being seen, which she didn’t like.’

A source who knows the couple well said: ‘They felt that Frogmore and the money spent on it was no different from any other arrangement involving the main home of a member of the Royal Family.

‘But because it was Harry and Meghan, it was always being used as a stick to beat them with. Paying back the money was one of the first decisions they took. They knew that if they did, no one would have the right to do that any more.’

Prince Charles The Queen Mother inspired his love of music


Prince Charles has revealed how his grandmother Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, inspired his love of music.

The Prince of Wales, 71, also admitted that he was thrilled to be asked to pick out several pieces to play at Prince William’s wedding to Kate in 2011.

Prince Charles said he first became aware of the ‘inspirational’ performing arts when attending the Bolshoi Ballet’s The Fountain of Bakhchisarai in 1956. 

Describing it as an unforgettable experience, the young prince attended the Covent Garden-based performance with his grandmother.

Speaking in an interview with Alan Titchmarsh for Classic FM, the royal, who is currently living at Birkhall on the Queen’s Balmoral estate in Aberdeenshire, also divulged that the Queen Mother would often play music with her grandson. 

Prince Charles follows his grandmother, the Queen Mother, to their car after watching a matinee performance of ‘The Fountain of Bakhchisarai’ by the Bolshoi Theatre Ballet of Moscow at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, London in 1956

Prince Charles, who learnt the cello (pictured performing) and trumpet at boarding school, has been vocal about the role music has played in his life, previously listing favourites ranging from classical composers to 1930s dance bands and singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen

Prince Charles, who learnt the cello (pictured performing) and trumpet at boarding school, has been vocal about the role music has played in his life, previously listing favourites ranging from classical composers to 1930s dance bands and singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge smile following their marriage at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011 in London

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge smile following their marriage at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011 in London

A preview of the programme, which airs tonight at 8pm, was shared to the Clarence House Instagram page this afternoon, along with a selection of old family photographs showing Charles with his grandmother.

Asked what his earliest memory of classical music is, he said: ‘Well I suppose various people would play it around me. My grandmother used to play quite a bit of music, so I would hear something there. 

‘But I suspect the first time I really became aware of it was being taken by my grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, to Covent Garden aged seven, I think.

‘It must have been in 1956 to see the Bolshoi Ballet perform. It was their first visit to the United Kingdom and I shall never forget that incredible occasion. I was completely inspired by it.’ 

Elsewhere in the interview, the prince revealed how he had helped his son Prince William, 37, decide on the musical choices for his 2011 wedding to Kate, 38.

‘I love trying to organise some interesting, I hope, pieces of music for certain occasions…particularly for weddings if people want,’ he said.

A preview of Prince Charles' Classic FM programme, which airs tonight at 8pm, was shared to the royal's Instagram page this afternoon, along with a selection of old family photographs showing a young Charles with his family (pictured in 1951)

A preview of Prince Charles’ Classic FM programme, which airs tonight at 8pm, was shared to the royal’s Instagram page this afternoon, along with a selection of old family photographs showing a young Charles with his family (pictured in 1951)

A young Prince Charles pictured in 1979 surrounded by musicians as he appears to try his hand at conducting

A young Prince Charles pictured in 1979 surrounded by musicians as he appears to try his hand at conducting

‘I know my eldest son was quite understanding and was perfectly happy for me to suggest a few pieces for their wedding.

‘I hope that gave some people pleasure, but it’s rather fun having orchestras in for great occasions like that, and why not suggest a few pieces occasionally? Anyway… I do enjoy it.’

The royal, who has four grandchildren – Prince George, six, Princess Charlotte, five, Prince Louis, two, and Archie Mountbatten-Windsor, one – also talked about the importance of taking children to see performances. 

He explained: ‘Which is why it’s so important, I think, for grandparents or other relations to take children – at about the age of seven – to experience some form of the arts in performance.’

A collection of photographs of a young Prince Charles enjoying music was shared along with the audio.

The Duke and Duchess of Cornwall enjoy a performance together in 2008. The pair are isolating in Scotland during the UK's lockdown

The Duke and Duchess of Cornwall enjoy a performance together in 2008. The pair are isolating in Scotland during the UK’s lockdown

The caption read: ‘His Royal Highness recalls one of his earliest memories of classical music, when he first visited The Royal Opera House, aged just seven, in 1956 with his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother.

‘Tonight at 8pm, the first of two special programmes on Classic FM featuring The Prince of Wales will be aired. Each piece of music, chosen personally by His Royal Highness, has been recorded by a range of his musical patronages across the UK.’

Among the pieces he has chosen is Richard Wagner’s Siegfried Idyll – which Prince Charles previously revealed he had the Philharmonia Orchestra play as a ‘terribly romantic’ gift for Camilla on her 60th birthday.  

Charles, who learnt the cello and trumpet at boarding school, has been vocal about the role music has played in his life, previously listing favourites ranging from classical composers to 1930s dance bands and singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen. 



Princess Margaret ‘cleared the way’ for royal splits, says royal expert


Princess Margaret’s 1978 divorce paved the way for future royal marriages to be dissolved, a new documentary on the Queen’s sister claims. 

A Channel 5 documentary airing this Saturday, Princess Margaret: A Rebel Without a Crown, examines the life and loves of Princess Margaret and claims divorcing her husband of 18 years, Lord Snowdon, in 1978, paved the way for other unhappy marriage to flee unhappy relationships.

Earlier this year, the newest royal divorcé was Peter Philips, who split from wife Autumn after 17 years of marriage. 

The royal family has become no stranger to divorce proceedings in recent decades,  with Prince Charles, Prince Andrew and Princess Anne all separated or remarried. 

Scroll down for video 

Princess Margaret: A Rebel Without a Crown, airing on Channel 5 on Saturday 30 May, claims Princess Margaret’s divorce from Anthony Armstrong-Jones paved the way for other royals to escape their unhappy marriage (pictured together in 1965 in New York) 

Former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond says Princess Margaret's 1978 marriage breakdown made it okay to be a divorcee in the royal family in the documentary

Former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond says Princess Margaret’s 1978 marriage breakdown made it okay to be a divorcee in the royal family in the documentary

The programme examines Margaret’s colourful love life, which made her a must-invite in London social circles, the Sunday Express reports. 

From her love affair with married Peter Townsend to her marriage to the sulfurous Antony Armstrong-Jones, royal experts on the show say Margaret, who passed away in 2002, aged 71, stepped away from tradition in more ways than one. 

‘She did tarnish the family’s reputation but she cleared the way for others to get out of unhappy marriages,’ Ex-BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond said, speaking of Margaret’s highly publicised divorce from Lord Snowdon. 

The pair met in 1958 at a dinner party organised by mutual friends, and wed at Westminster Abbey in May 1960, the first royal wedding to be televised. 

Margaret was popular with the press, equaled in popularity only by legendary Hollywood actress Elizabeth Taylor (pictured: Margaret and Lord Snowdon in Beverly Hills, 1965)

Margaret was popular with the press, equaled in popularity only by legendary Hollywood actress Elizabeth Taylor (pictured: Margaret and Lord Snowdon in Beverly Hills, 1965)

Speaking in the Channel 5 programme, royal biographer Christopher Warwick claimed that Margaret’s popularity with the show-business world made her as popular as famed actress Elizabeth Taylor, and a favourite with photographs. 

‘Everything she did made news. The press only wanted pictures of Margaret and Taylor,’ he said. 

‘Margaret would go to parties and the sun would often be rising as she was driving home,’ he added.  

However, the union was reportedly not a good one, and the pair soon drifted apart, with both royals entering into extra-marital affairs. 

Peter Phillips and Autumn Phillips were the latest royal couple to announce their split in early 2020 (pictured in 2014 in London)

Peter Phillips and Autumn Phillips were the latest royal couple to announce their split in early 2020 (pictured in 2014 in London)

Princess Anne divorced from Peter's father Captain Mark Phillips (right) in 1992 after 19 years of marriage (pictured during a tour of Canada in Toronto, in the 1960s)

Princess Anne divorced from Peter’s father Captain Mark Phillips (right) in 1992 after 19 years of marriage (pictured during a tour of Canada in Toronto, in the 1960s)

Margaret famously invited Roddy Llewellyn, a lover who was 17 years her junior, to the island of Mustique in 1974, where they were photographed by paparazzis, precipitating the end of her marriage. 

The pair made their divorce official in 1978, after 18 years of marriage. The romance between Anthony Armstrong-Jones and the royal has been romanticised more than once, most lately in the second and third season of Netflix royal drama the Crown. 

In March 1992, Prince Andrew and the Duchess od York Sarah Ferguson announced their split, which led to their divorce in May 1996 (pictured with Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice in 1997)

In March 1992, Prince Andrew and the Duchess od York Sarah Ferguson announced their split, which led to their divorce in May 1996 (pictured with Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice in 1997)

Prince Charles and Lady Diana announced their split in 1992 after it was rumoured the Prince of Wales had engaged in an extra-marital affair with Camilla Parker-Bowles. The pair pictured in 1991 in Toronto

Prince Charles and Lady Diana announced their split in 1992 after it was rumoured the Prince of Wales had engaged in an extra-marital affair with Camilla Parker-Bowles. The pair pictured in 1991 in Toronto 

The separation fed newspaper columns at the time, and according to Jennie Bond, paved the way for royals such as Charles, Andrew and Peter to go through their own divorce 14 and 42 years later. 

The Queen’s first three children famously split from their spouse in 1992, a year which the monarch herself dubbed her ‘annus horribilis.’

Prince Andrew was the first to separate from his wife, the Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson on March 19. 

Anne, now 70, followed suit by divorcing from her husband Captain Mark Phillips on April 23 after 19 years of marriage. 

In December of the same year, Charles split from Lady Diana Spencer, the Princess of Wales after years of marital trouble, and the very public announcement of his extra-marital affair with Camilla, now Duchess of Cornwall. Both Andrew’s and Charles’ divorces were officialised in 1996.

Princess Margaret: A Rebel Without a Crown, airs on Saturday 30 May on Channel 5. 

Princess Margaret ‘cleared the way’ for royal splits, says royal expert


Princess Margaret’s 1978 divorce paved the way for future royal marriages to be dissolved, a new documentary on the Queen’s sister claims. 

A Channel 5 documentary airing this Saturday, Princess Margaret: A Rebel Without a Crown, examines the life and loves of Princess Margaret and claims divorcing her husband of 18 years, Lord Snowdon, in 1978, paved the way for other unhappy marriage to flee unhappy relationships.

Earlier this year, the newest royal divorcé was Peter Philips, who split from wife Autumn after 17 years of marriage. 

The royal family has become no stranger to divorce proceedings in recent decades,  with Prince Charles, Prince Andrew and Princess Anne all separated or remarried. 

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Princess Margaret: A Rebel Without a Crown, airing on Channel 5 on Saturday 30 May, claims Princess Margaret’s divorce from Anthony Armstrong-Jones paved the way for other royals to escape their unhappy marriage (pictured together in 1965 in New York) 

Former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond says Princess Margaret's 1978 marriage breakdown made it okay to be a divorcee in the royal family in the documentary

Former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond says Princess Margaret’s 1978 marriage breakdown made it okay to be a divorcee in the royal family in the documentary

The programme examines Margaret’s colourful love life, which made her a must-invite in London social circles, the Sunday Express reports. 

From her love affair with married Peter Townsend to her marriage to the sulfurous Antony Armstrong-Jones, royal experts on the show say Margaret, who passed away in 2002, aged 71, stepped away from tradition in more ways than one. 

‘She did tarnish the family’s reputation but she cleared the way for others to get out of unhappy marriages,’ Ex-BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond said, speaking of Margaret’s highly publicised divorce from Lord Snowdon. 

The pair met in 1958 at a dinner party organised by mutual friends, and wed at Westminster Abbey in May 1960, the first royal wedding to be televised. 

Margaret was popular with the press, equaled in popularity only by legendary Hollywood actress Elizabeth Taylor (pictured: Margaret and Lord Snowdon in Beverly Hills, 1965)

Margaret was popular with the press, equaled in popularity only by legendary Hollywood actress Elizabeth Taylor (pictured: Margaret and Lord Snowdon in Beverly Hills, 1965)

Speaking in the Channel 5 programme, royal biographer Christopher Warwick claimed that Margaret’s popularity with the show-business world made her as popular as famed actress Elizabeth Taylor, and a favourite with photographs. 

‘Everything she did made news. The press only wanted pictures of Margaret and Taylor,’ he said. 

‘Margaret would go to parties and the sun would often be rising as she was driving home,’ he added.  

However, the union was reportedly not a good one, and the pair soon drifted apart, with both royals entering into extra-marital affairs. 

Peter Phillips and Autumn Phillips were the latest royal couple to announce their split in early 2020 (pictured in 2014 in London)

Peter Phillips and Autumn Phillips were the latest royal couple to announce their split in early 2020 (pictured in 2014 in London)

Princess Anne divorced from Peter's father Captain Mark Phillips (right) in 1992 after 19 years of marriage (pictured during a tour of Canada in Toronto, in the 1960s)

Princess Anne divorced from Peter’s father Captain Mark Phillips (right) in 1992 after 19 years of marriage (pictured during a tour of Canada in Toronto, in the 1960s)

Margaret famously invited Roddy Llewellyn, a lover who was 17 years her junior, to the island of Mustique in 1974, where they were photographed by paparazzis, precipitating the end of her marriage. 

The pair made their divorce official in 1978, after 18 years of marriage. The romance between Anthony Armstrong-Jones and the royal has been romanticised more than once, most lately in the second and third season of Netflix royal drama the Crown. 

In March 1992, Prince Andrew and the Duchess od York Sarah Ferguson announced their split, which led to their divorce in May 1996 (pictured with Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice in 1997)

In March 1992, Prince Andrew and the Duchess od York Sarah Ferguson announced their split, which led to their divorce in May 1996 (pictured with Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice in 1997)

Prince Charles and Lady Diana announced their split in 1992 after it was rumoured the Prince of Wales had engaged in an extra-marital affair with Camilla Parker-Bowles. The pair pictured in 1991 in Toronto

Prince Charles and Lady Diana announced their split in 1992 after it was rumoured the Prince of Wales had engaged in an extra-marital affair with Camilla Parker-Bowles. The pair pictured in 1991 in Toronto 

The separation fed newspaper columns at the time, and according to Jennie Bond, paved the way for royals such as Charles, Andrew and Peter to go through their own divorce 14 and 42 years later. 

The Queen’s first three children famously split from their spouse in 1992, a year which the monarch herself dubbed her ‘annus horribilis.’

Prince Andrew was the first to separate from his wife, the Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson on March 19. 

Anne, now 70, followed suit by divorcing from her husband Captain Mark Phillips on April 23 after 19 years of marriage. 

In December of the same year, Charles split from Lady Diana Spencer, the Princess of Wales after years of marital trouble, and the very public announcement of his extra-marital affair with Camilla, now Duchess of Cornwall. Both Andrew’s and Charles’ divorces were officialised in 1996.

Princess Margaret: A Rebel Without a Crown, airs on Saturday 30 May on Channel 5.