All signs indicated that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's royal exit was an outcome that everyone, including the Queen, saw coming. But now, a new book by Robert Lacey has revealed that Her Majesty actually tried to prevent the royal break. Her idea was to convince the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to move to Johannesburg, South Africa for "a year or two," rather than commit straight away to abandoning their royal duties.
Queen Elizabeth wanted Harry and Meghan to move to Africa
As revealed by the Mirror in an excerpt of Lacey's Battle of Brothers, the Queen tried to prevent Harry and Meghan from leaving the royal family.
Official sources told Lacey that the British sovereign knew the young couple wanted to have an "ordinary" life away from the obligations and privileges of royalty.
Therefore, the Queen thought about convincing the Sussexes to leave England and live "a year or two" in Johannesburg, South Africa, a favourite location of little Archie's parents.
Queen's time in Malta with Prince Philip motivated her plan
Lacey also points out that the Queen's plan was inspired by time she spent in Malta between 1949 and 1951 with her husband, Prince Philip, who at the time was serving as a naval officer on the Mediterranean island.
Unfortunately for Her Majesty, the apparent plan never materialized. Earlier this year, Harry and Meghan stepped down as senior royals, and now live in a mansion in Santa Barbara, California, with 1-year-old Archie.
As for the possibility of Harry and Meghan returning to the UK for Christmastime, recent weeks have produced mixed reports — the most recent of which casted doubt on the family seeing the Queen in 2020.