A new book says Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, got less than they wanted when Queen Elizabeth II gave them a place to live that one palace insider called a “generous gesture.”
According to Katie Nicholl’s “The New Royals,” Harry and Meghan wanted apartments in Windsor Castle.
“When Harry and Meghan announced their wish to move out of Kensington Palace, the Queen offered them Frogmore Cottage in Windsor Great Park as their new home,” the book said, according to an excerpt published recently by the U.K.’s Daily Mail.
“This was not the suite of apartments at Windsor Castle they had hoped for. It was a generous gesture nonetheless, recalled Lady Elizabeth Anson, who died in 2020,” the excerpt said. Anson was a party planner and a cousin of the queen.
“‘The cottage was a big deal,’ she said. ‘The Queen’s entrance into the gardens is right next to their cottage. It is essentially her back yard, her solitude, and her privacy. She was giving that up in gifting Harry and Meghan Frogmore Cottage. We all thought it was very big of her. She said, ‘I hope they’ll respect it,’” the excerpt said.
One month later, Harry and Meghan moved the offices of their Royal Household to Buckingham Palace, severing a connection with Harry’s brother, Prince William. The book said the move was “deeply disappointing” for the queen.
The excerpts published by the Daily Mail include an early anecdote of Meghan’s temper and how it played with Elizabeth.
“Meghan’s direct approach had even come to the notice of the Queen,” the book said. “On one occasion in the run-up to the wedding, Meghan went to Windsor Castle for a menu-tasting and ended up having a tense exchange with a member of staff, according to one source.
“‘Meghan was at the castle to taste some of the dishes, and told one of the caterers she could taste egg,’ said the source. ‘She got quite upset, saying that the dish was meant to be vegan and macrobiotic, when suddenly the Queen walked in and said, ‘Meghan, in this family we don’t speak to people like that.’”
The book quoted Lady Elizabeth as saying, “The run-up to the wedding was really very difficult for the Queen. She was very upset by how Harry had behaved and some of his demands and the way he went about things his own way.
“I remember her being rather upset by how beastly Harry was being. Their relationship was quite badly damaged by it all.”
“I don’t think the Queen ever truly understood Harry’s decision to leave,” Lady Elizabeth said, according to the book.
“Turning one’s back on duty is completely alien to the Queen and she has been very hurt by it all.”
Another book, “Courtiers: The Hidden Power Behind the Crown” by Valentine Low, said Meghan had a false illusion of what the marriage would bring her.
“A former palace insider said: ‘I think Meghan thought she was going to be the Beyoncé of the UK. Being part of the royal family would give her that kudos,'” the book said, according to an excerpt published in the New York Post.
“Whereas what she discovered was that there were so many rules that were so ridiculous that she couldn’t even do the things that she could do as a private individual, which is tough,” the insider said.
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