Platinum Jubilee: Prince Harry and Megan Markle make their first public appearance in the UK

Platinum Jubilee: Prince Harry and Megan Markle make their first public appearance in the UK

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LONDON – Crowds outside St. Paul’s cheered on Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex as the couple made their first public appearance at Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

Prince William and his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, had an even bigger hand as they entered the Anglican Cathedral in the heart of London for a service of thanksgiving on the second day of Jubilee events. The church bells rang as Prince Charles, the heir to the throne, arrived. The reaction from onlookers to the entrance of Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie Johnson was mixed. Some booed.

The Queen was absent, watching the broadcast on the BBC from her rooms at Windsor Castle.

The palace alerted the public that the monarch was beginning to feel “some discomfort” at Thursday’s Trooping the Color ceremony by British military regiments and would therefore not attend. She has struggled with what the Palace calls “mobility issues” in recent months and has missed a number of engagements.

Britain celebrates its oldest monarch, Queen Elizabeth II. The festivities began on June 2. (Video: Alexa Juliana Ard/The Washington Post)

Yet even after the Palace announcement, made an appearance at Windsor on Thursday night. Dressed in green, she looked steady on her feet, but perhaps tired, as she placed a gloved hand on a shimmering globe, to symbolically turn on the headlights in Britain and the Commonwealth.

“It had been an extraordinarily long day for Her Majesty, but she seemed determined to make this final appearance,” the royal reporter wrote for the Daily Telegraph.

In his Friday sermon, the Archbishop of York, Stephen Cottrell, addressed the Queen directly and told the congregation what they already knew: that Elizabeth has been a lifelong horse lover.

All the Queen’s Horses: From Her First Pony to Macron’s Jubilee Gift

Cottrell joked he had ‘no good advice’ from above for the derby races at Epsom Downs on Saturday, where some of the Queen’s horses will appear. Continuing the equine theme, the Archbishop said, “Your Majesty, we are sorry that you are not here with us this morning in person. But we’re so glad you’re still in the saddle.

People may forget, but the Queen is also the ‘defender of the faith and supreme governor of the Church of England’. The Archbishop praised her for “unshakable steadfastness and steadfastness, fidelity to God, obedience to a vocation.”

The Prime Minister did the readings from Philippians in the New Testament.

“Rejoice,” Johnson read. “Let your gentleness be known to all. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God.

There’s a constant transition of responsibility – and soft power – now shifting from the Queen to her son Charles and grandson William, who play bigger roles during the jubilee. The BBC cameras focused mainly on them, but occasionally cut out to feature Harry and Meghan.

The BBC commentator said it looked like Harry and Meghan were allowed “their own little procession” as they entered, which he said was done by the Queen.

St. Paul wasn’t the easiest place to catch a glimpse of the royal family, but that didn’t stop several hundred people from gathering outside, where the streets were lined with metal barricades.

Among those at the front who got a brief glimpse were Ian Tuer, 64, transport manager, and his wife Valerie, 55, who works as a butcher. They came down from the Lake District.

Valerie said Harry and Meghan’s appearance will have been well received by the British public: “I think a lot would have been said if they hadn’t appeared. They did the right thing when they came back.

Meghan and Harry stay behind the scenes on the first day of Jubilee celebrations

Ian said it was good to see Harry and Meghan. “I think they wanted to be here no matter what people thought. They made their decision to be the stars of Hollywood and that’s fine. They were well received and they will be delighted.

As for Prince Charles, Ian said: “He’s a nice guy, he’s waited a long time to be king, I think he’ll be quite tolerant, I think he’ll be extremely approachable, he won’t be around forever. , the future of the royal family was evident on the [Buckingham Palace] balcony” the day before.

The Sussexes are in Britain from California with their young children Archie, 3, and Lilibet, who will celebrate her first birthday on Saturday.

This trip marks the first time the Queen has met Lilibet in person. Harry and Meghan named their daughter after Elizabeth, using the Queen’s childhood nickname.

Harry has only made a few public trips to Britain since settling in California. In April 2021 he attended the funeral of his grandfather Prince Philip, although he did not return this spring for Philip’s memorial, which was a much bigger affair as covid restrictions had been lifted. Last summer he returned to unveil a statue of his late mother, Princess Diana.

Harry’s lawyers said the prince did not feel safe while in the UK due to the security arrangements that applied to him. He is suing the UK government after being told he would no longer have the ‘same degree’ of personal protection when visiting Britain. The prince offered to pay for security himself, but the British Home Office refused.

In a surprise move, the couple announced in January 2020 that they were stepping back as senior royals. The Queen rejected their proposal for ‘half, half out’ royals and cut their royal sponsorships, making it clear in statements that while the Sussexes are highly valued members of the Royal Family, work comes first.

The Sussexes decamped to California after a short stay in Canada.

Both parties agreed to a review of the situation after 12 months. But according to royal biographer Robert Hardman, the Queen did not expect them to return to their British life. Writing in her book ‘Queen of Our Times’, Hardman says the Queen knew the Sussexes were unlikely to return as senior royals.

“When a well-meaning visitor asked her if she expected them to return to royal life, she replied firmly, ‘Of course not.’ They took the dogs.”

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