Meghan and Harry delayed ‘Fab Four’ Windsor walkabout with William and Kate because they had to change into formal mourning dress to meet well-wishers, claims NBC News royal commentator

  • Prince Harry and Meghan had to get changed into formal mourning attire, royal expert claims on NBC today
  • Royal correspondent Daisy McAndrew says she believed Meghan needed to have ‘hair and make-up’ done
  • She told the Today show that the walkabout had been ‘scheduled to be nearly an hour before they came’
  • Follow MailOnline’s liveblog today as more events take place following the Queen’s death, by clicking here 

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal walkabout with Prince William and Kate was delayed by nearly an hour because the Sussexes had to get changed into formal mourning attire, a royal expert claimed on US TV today.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex had to ‘quickly go and get changed’ to meet mourners with the Prince and Princess of Wales outside Windsor Castle on Saturday afternoon, according to NBC’s Daisy McAndrew.

The NBC News royal commentator told the network’s Today show that she believed Meghan needed to have her ‘hair and make-up’ done and that the walkabout had been ‘scheduled to be nearly an hour before they came’.

William and Harry have a well-documented troubled relationship but the death of their grandmother last Thursday saw the rivals shelve their differences when, with their wives, they viewed floral tributes left to the late Queen.

The new heir to the throne is understood to have invited his brother Harry in a text message to join them in meeting well-wishers outside the castle, which sources said William thought was an ‘important show of unity’.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex walk to meet members of the public at Windsor Castle on Saturday after the Queen’s death

The Prince and Princess of Wales and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on the Long Walk at Windsor Castle on Saturday

NBC News royal commentator Daisy McAndrew spoke on the network’s Today show about the Windsor Castle walkabout

Ms McAndrew said: ‘Interestingly, the reason that the walkabout was so late – it was scheduled to be nearly an hour before they actually came – was because of course Harry and Meghan had to go and get changed.

‘They weren’t wearing the proper formal mourning attire, so they had to quickly go and get changed – I guess, do hair and makeup for Meghan. So that’s why they were late.’

‘Granny, I’m forever grateful to you’: Prince Harry issues statement ‘celebrating the life’ of the Queen – remembering their ‘cherished memories’ from the first time she met his ‘darling wife’ Meghan to when she hugged her ‘beloved great-grandchildren’ 

The Duke of Sussex today paid an emotional tribute to his late grandmother the Queen as he praised her ‘sound advice’ and ‘infectious smile’ and called her a ‘guiding compass’ through her commitment to service and duty.

In a statement released today, which is understood to have been held back a day out of respect for the anniversary of the September 11 attacks, the Duke also said he wanted to honour his father at the start of his reign as King.

Harry also referred to his ‘darling wife’ Meghan Markle; said he was grateful that the Queen had hugged her ‘beloved great-grandchildren’; and spoke of how he ‘cherished’ the times spent with the 96-year-old.

The Duke said today: ‘In celebrating the life of my grandmother, Her Majesty The Queen – and in mourning her loss – we are all reminded of the guiding compass she was to so many in her commitment to service and duty.

‘She was globally admired and respected. Her unwavering grace and dignity remained true throughout her life and now her everlasting legacy.

‘Let us echo the words she spoke after the passing of her husband, Prince Philip, words which can bring comfort to all of us now: ‘Life, of course, consists of final partings as well as first meetings.”

He added: ‘Granny, while this final parting brings us great sadness, I am forever grateful for all of our first meetings-from my earliest childhood memories with you, to meeting you for the first time as my Commander-in-Chief, to the first moment you met my darling wife and hugged your beloved great-grandchildren.

‘I cherish these times shared with you, and the many other special moments in between. You are already sorely missed, not just by us, but by the world over.

‘And as it comes to first meetings, we now honour my father in his new role as King Charles III. Thank you for your commitment to service. Thank you for your sound advice.

‘Thank you for your infectious smile. We, too, smile knowing that you and grandpa are reunited now, and both together in peace.’

 

The claim comes after the Daily Mail’s Richard Kay reported that the walkabout had originally been planned for 4.30pm but was delayed by 45 minutes as the brothers communicated with one another.

Ms McAndrew also claimed that the meeting was ‘very much the King’s desire’, because Charles III ‘wanted to see the boys together because of course it was overshadowing the beginning of his reign’.

But the Daily Mail reported today that the walkabout was not carried out on the direction of Charles, with one royal source saying such suggestions were ‘absolutely not the case’.

It is also said to be false that William acted only after learning Harry was set on his own walkabout among the crowds complete with an attendant TV crew, with one source saying this was ‘complete b******s’.

Ms McAndrew also said: ‘They are a stone’s throw from each other (in Windsor), just a really short walk. That’s one of the things that people kept remarking on, how sad it was that they could be so physically close but so emotionally distant.

‘Now of course, one swallow doesn’t make a summer. We know this probably isn’t the end of it, that there will still be residual bad feeling.

‘Everybody is waiting for that book that Harry is bringing out some time between the autumn and the winter of this year. But for now it looks like a rapprochement.’

As the couple’s first engagement under their new titles, William and Kate were joined by Harry and Meghan for the first time in more than two years since Commonwealth Day on March 9, 2020.

They inspected flowers and balloons before a walkabout at the venue on Saturday.

A royal source said the Prince of Wales asked his brother and his wife to join them in viewing the tributes.

The source said: ‘The Prince of Wales invited the Duke and Duchess to join him and the Princess of Wales earlier.’

The last time William was joined in public by his brother at Windsor Castle was at the funeral of the Duke of Edinburgh in April last year.

Both couples left in the same vehicle as the engagement, which lasted more than 40 minutes, came to a close.

All four were dressed in black as they walked along the gates of the castle. At one point during the walkabout, Meghan was seen being given a close hug by a young girl in the crowd.

The duke and duchess held hands as they looked at the tributes, with Harry at one point affectionately putting his hand on Meghan’s back.

Each member of the royal family was seen pointing at different tributes and discussing them amongst each other as members of the crowd waved at them.

William and Kate and Harry and Meghan then greeted well-wishers at Windsor Castle with a number holding up mobile phones to take a photo of the royals.

A crowd at the castle broke out into applause as the couples approached members of the public and spoke to them.

William was seen speaking intently to a member of the crowd, at one moment shaking a woman’s hand. Both William and Kate could be seen thanking people.

Kate crouched down at one moment and began speaking to a child who had started to cry. The child stopped crying when Kate approached her.

Kate, William, Harry and Meghan on the Long Walk at Windsor Castle on Saturday afternoon as they go on a walkabout

Meghan, Harry, William and Kate view floral tributes left at Windsor Castle on Saturday afternoon as royal fans watch on

The Duke of Sussex has paid an emotional tribute to his late grandmother the Queen as he thanked her for her ‘sound advice’

Meghan was also seen shaking the hands of several children and well-wishers at Windsor. She walked over to a section of the crowd and approached a teenager, who was seen putting her hand over her mouth in shock.

Prince Harry is ‘banned’ from wearing military uniform at final vigil for The Queen at Westminster Hall but Prince Andrew is allowed to ‘as special mark of respect’ 

By JACK WRIGHT FOR MAILONLINE

King Charles III’s son Prince Harry has been banned from wearing military uniform if he attends the final vigil for Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Hall – but the monarch’s shamed younger brother Prince Andrew will be allowed to don his Armed Forces outfit ‘as a special mark of respect’ for their late mother, it has been claimed today.

Royal sources have said the disgraced Duke of York – a Falklands War veteran who exiled from public life amid the fallout from his role in the Jeffrey Epstein scandal – will be entitled to wear military colours if he attends the ceremonial event on Wednesday.

However, Meghan Markle’s friend and preferred journalist Omid Scobie claimed that the Duke of Sussex – who has also seen military action by serving two tours of Afghanistan – has been banned from wearing his uniform at all ceremonial events during mourning for Her Majesty.

‘I understand that, unlike Prince Andrew, Prince Harry will NOT be allowed to wear uniform at the final vigil in Westminster Hall. No doubt a huge blow for the Duke of Sussex, who served for 10 years and this morning spoke of the Queen being his ”commander-in-chief”’, he tweeted this afternoon.

The Queen will lie in state at Westminster Hall from Wednesday at 5pm until 6:30am Monday 19 September, the day of the state funeral.

A ceremonial procession is due to take place, which will see the Queen’s coffin travel from Buckingham Palace to the Palace of Westminster for the lying in state. Her coffin will be closed and will rest on a raised platform, called a catafalque, in the hall and will be draped in the Royal Standard with the Orb and Sceptre placed on top. It will be guarded around the clock by a vigil of units from the Sovereign’s Bodyguard, the Household Division, or Yeoman Warders of the Tower of London.

Buckingham Palace has yet to confirm what time the vigil will take place and which royals will attend the event, though it is believed that it will take place before the late monarch’s lying in state opens to the public that evening.

Working members of the Royal Family will wear uniform when present at five ceremonial events during the period of mourning the Queen.

These are the service of thanksgiving at St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh, the procession to Westminster Hall and service of prayer and reflection, the Vigil at Westminster Hall, and next Monday’s state funeral at Westminster Abbey and the committal service at St George’s Chapel in Windsor.

Andrew gave up his HRH status and was stripped of all his honorary military roles, including Colonel of the Grenadier Guards, over his friendship with Epstein and allegations made by one of the paedophile’s ‘sex slaves’ Virginia Roberts that the royal sexually abused her when she was a minor under American law – claims that culminated in a bombshell US lawsuit and a multimillion-pound out of court settlement. The Duke of York has consistently denied the allegations.

Harry and Meghan were also stripped of their titles after they quit royal duties and left the UK for California. The ensuing Megxit saga, which has seen the Duke and Duchess of Sussex make a series of astonishing allegations against The Firm including claims of racism against Meghan and her unborn son Archie by an unnamed senior royal, has sparked a civil war in the House of Windsor and plunged the monarchy into one of its most severe crises.

The duchess and her husband spoke briefly for a few moments and Meghan could be seen assuring a young girl by putting her hand on her shoulder.

The girl then said: ‘Can I have a hug?’ and Meghan was seen nodding, before leaning in and giving her a big hug. The touching moment was filmed by other members in the crowd.

The duke and duchess were handed bunches of flowers which they both accepted.

William and Kate were also given bunches of flowers by members of the crowd as one visitor waved a Welsh flag in the background. At one moment, a small Paddington Bear was given to William, which he passed on to an aide.

He was seen lightly touching Kate’s back at one moment as she crouched down again to speak to a child at the front of the gates.

The crowd was heard chatting excitedly and taking photographs as William and Kate and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex stopped to speak to each person at the front of the barriers.

The royal couples walked along separately from one another, with William and Kate speaking to people on one side of the road and Harry and Meghan speaking to people on the other side of the road.

Today, Harry paid an emotional tribute to his late grandmother the Queen as he thanked her for her ‘sound advice’ and ‘infectious smile’.

The Duke of Sussex also described her as a ‘guiding compass’ through her commitment to service and duty.

In a statement released today, which is understood to have been held back a day out of respect for the anniversary of September 11, the duke also said he wanted to honour his father at the start of his reign as King.

Harry said: ‘In celebrating the life of my grandmother, Her Majesty The Queen – and in mourning her loss – we are all reminded of the guiding compass she was to so many in her commitment to service and duty.

‘She was globally admired and respected. Her unwavering grace and dignity remained true throughout her life and now her everlasting legacy.

‘Let us echo the words she spoke after the passing of her husband, Prince Philip, words which can bring comfort to all of us now: ‘Life, of course, consists of final partings as well as first meetings.”

He added: ‘Granny, while this final parting brings us great sadness, I am forever grateful for all of our first meetings-from my earliest childhood memories with you, to meeting you for the first time as my Commander-in-Chief, to the first moment you met my darling wife and hugged your beloved great-grandchildren.

‘I cherish these times shared with you, and the many other special moments in between. You are already sorely missed, not just by us, but by the world over.

‘And as it comes to first meetings, we now honour my father in his new role as King Charles III. Thank you for your commitment to service. Thank you for your sound advice.

‘Thank you for your infectious smile. We, too, smile knowing that you and grandpa are reunited now, and both together in peace.’

Last Friday, the King shared his love for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex as they continue to build their lives in America.

Charles referenced his love for his son, Harry, and wife Meghan during an address to the nation in which he also shared his ‘feelings of profound sorrow’ over the death of the Queen.

After referring to his eldest son William and his wife Kate in their new titles, as the Prince and Princess of Wales, he said: ‘I want also to express my love for Harry and Meghan as they continue to build their lives overseas.’

The duke and duchess live in Montecito in California with their two children, Archie and Lilibet, having stepped down as senior working royals in 2020.

The couple were visiting Europe for a series of events when news of the Queen’s worsening health emerged.

Harry arrived at Balmoral Castle on Thursday evening, having cancelled an appearance at a charity awards ceremony in London to join fellow royals who had gathered in the Aberdeenshire residence, while Meghan remained in the capital.

Two years have passed since William, Kate, Harry and Meghan were together side-by-side in public, during the Commonwealth Day church service at Westminster Abbey on March 9, 2020

After the Harry and Meghan’s bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey in March last year, the Queen said in a statement that ‘some recollections may vary’ but the Sussexes ‘will always be much-loved family members’

Harry left the residence around 12 hours later at 8.15am on Friday, with a convoy seen passing by flowers that had been laid in tribute to the late monarch.

The duke then boarded a British Airways flight at Aberdeen International Airport, dressed in a black suit.

As he walked towards the steps of the plane, he was seen speaking to a woman in a hi-vis vest, at one stage placing his hand on her shoulder.

His flight arrived at Heathrow Airport shortly after 11.30am and he was believed to have returned to Frogmore Cottage in Windsor.

The Sussexes, who were coming to the end of a whistlestop visit to Europe when the Queen died, are expected to stay in the UK to attend the Queen’s state funeral, which is likely to be held on September 19.

The couple have a troubled relationship with their relatives amid the Megxit saga, the rift between Harry and his brother, allegations of racism against an unnamed royal and accusations that the institution failed to help a suicidal Meghan.

After the Sussexes’ bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey, the Queen said in a statement that ‘some recollections may vary’, the Sussexes ‘will always be much-loved family members’ and that the issues raised would be ‘addressed by the family privately’.

Throughout, the Sussexes have made efforts to publicly praise the Queen, even naming their daughter Lilibet after her – her family nickname since childhood.

MailOnline has contacted Harry and Meghan’s representatives at Archewell for comment on the claims about the delay to the walkabout. NBC was the broadcaster to whom the Duke of Sussex gave an interview in April.

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