Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announce their plan to “step back” from their royal life with the intention of balancing their time between England and North America.
In a statement on Wednesday, Markle and Prince Harry made their intentions to become “financially independent” publicly, adding that they will still support the Queen with royal duties. The Queen and other members of the royal family were said to be left “hurt” by the couple’s decision, according to PA.
It has since become known that the Queen, the Prince of Wales and other senior royals were never consulted or were aware of the couple’s statement before it was made publicly, with the evening standard saying that Charles and the Duke of Cambridge only received the statement 10 minutes before it was released.
It is clear that the couple’s relationship with the media is a large motivating factor for their decision to step back, throughout their relationship.
Markle and Prince Harry have criticized what they deem as unfair treatment from sections of the British press. They have described a “ruthless campaign that has escalated,” and have pointed out the “racial undertones” in the news coverage pieces and even are taking legal actions against three different media publications.
Their distaste with the media was made clear in their new Sussex Royal website, with a whole section dedicated to their desire to “amend their media relations policy”, this is specifically referencing their desire to be freed from the Royal rota system currently in place which gives U.K. media preferential access to engagements carried out by the royal family.
The U.K.’s National Union of Journalists has voiced their concerns over the Sussexes desires. “We cannot have a situation where journalists writing about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex can only do so if they have the royal seal of approval,” NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet said in a statement.
Prince Harry had previously given an interview with ITV in which he talked about the struggles of the royal life in which he stated that he will always protect his family and that he does not want a repetition of the past, referencing what happened to his mother, Princess Diana. “I will not be bullied into playing a game that killed my mum” said Harry in the interview.