Published On: Mon, Jan 13th, 2020

Royal news: How Queen ‘convinced Prince Harry to remain member of Royal Family’ | Royal | News

The Queen is at the heart of crisis talks today at Sandringham with Prince Harry, after he and Meghan Markle announced last week that they intend to step down from their senior royal roles. Prince Charles and Prince William are expected to join Her Majesty and Prince Philip at their Norfolk home, while the Duchess of Sussex will be phoning in from Canada. Key issues for today’s royal talks will be how the Duke and Duchess plan to finance their future; their Windsor home Frogmore Cottage, and their royal titles. 

With the unity of the Royal Family already disintegrating and the future of the institution under threat, Her Majesty is understood to be pressing for a swift resolution.

However, the Queen has stepped in once before with Harry and his doubts over royal life.

Speaking in 2018 documentary “Meghan Markle: American Princess”, author Penny Junor explained: “Harry was a reluctant royal.

“I think there was a real danger at one time that Harry might turn his back on his royal life and his royal responsibilities and go and live somewhere quietly.

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Harry

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Harry (Image: Getty)

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle pictured last week (Image: Getty)

However, his grandmother the Queen persuaded him to not to give up his royal duties.”

Ms Junor added: “In the end he stayed a royal.”

Prince Harry has spoken several times in the past about the struggles of life in the spotlight, and how he felt more “normal” when he was serving in the Army. 

However, when he expressed his doubts about being a royal back in 2017, he upset the Queen, according to Katie Nicholl, in her 2017 book “Harry: Life, Loss, and Love”. 

READ MORE: Princess Anne’s example provides crucial lesson for Meghan and Harry

Queen Elizabeth II

The Queen pictured yesterday at Sandringham (Image: Getty)

Speaking to the US magazine Newsweek, Harry told journalist Angela Levin: “Is there any one of the Royal Family who wants to be King or Queen? I don’t think so, but we will carry out our duties at the right time.”

Ms Nicholl explains: “It was the first time Harry had talked so publicly about the monarchy and his personal views about the crown did not go down well at the Palace.”

A royal source told Ms Nicholl: “The Queen has a very special relationship with Harry but she couldn’t understand the comments he made about duty.

“I think she found them unnecessary and upsetting.

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Meghan Markle and Archie

Meghan MAkrel ahs returned to Canada where baby Archie has remained over the crisis (Image: Getty)

Prince Charles and Prince William

Charles and William, pictured on Christmas Day, are expected to attend today’s meetings (Image: Getty)

“The Queen’s feeling is whatever your lot is, you get on with it, and if you’ve drawn the short straw, then so be it.

“She has never complained and cannot understand this need to open up about such matters. 

“Possibly it’s a generational thing, but she simply doesn’t comprehend it.”

Ms Junor, in her 2005 book “The Firm”, wrote more about how she felt Harry wanted to be “free from the family Firm” as early as 15 years ago. 

Prince Harry and Meghan timeline

Prince Harry and Meghan timeline (Image: DX)

She discusses the deep love both William and Harry have for their mother, and how difficult it has been for them to acknowledge her “terrifying unhappiness”.  

She continues: “Harry has been particularly affected.  

“Whether or not any of this is related to his behaviour is a matter for the psychoanalysts. 

“In the meantime, it is important that a solution be found before he, like his mother, self-destructs.

“The answer perhaps is to cut Harry free from the family Firm.

“Why not let him step back from it all and do what he wants with his life?  

“His father found it hard enough to carve out a role for himself and he is heir to the throne.  

“So, let him go out and earn a living free from all encumbrances. 

“If his heart is really set, as he said it was, on following in his mother’s footsteps and carrying on with her work, he could do it as a private citizen.  

“He will always be a name that any charity would want on its notepaper.  

“And if the time ever came when he was needed to take up royal duties, then he could be brought back into the royal fold.” 

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