Mourners split on if Meghan should fly for Prince Philip's funeral
‘She’s got her own issues with the monarchy’: Mourners are split on whether pregnant Meghan Markle should fly back with Harry for Prince Philip’s funeral – but all agree Duke of Sussex should ‘be there for his grandfather’
- Prince Harry will return from US for his grandfather’s funeral on April 17
- However Meghan, who is due to give birth to a baby girl in early Summer, will not
- Doctors have advised 39-year-old not to fly 11-hours from California for funeral
Members of the public paying tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh have welcomed the news that Prince Harry will be returning to the UK for his grandfather’s funeral – but mourners had a mixed reaction over Meghan’s absence.
A number of mourners gathered outside Windsor Castle gave their opinions on the Duke of Sussex returning from the US for the solemn occasion, and were positive for the most part.
However, the consensus wasn’t quite as unanimous when it came to his pregnant wife Meghan, who is due to give birth to a baby girl early this summer and won’t be accompanying Prince Harry to the UK on doctor’s orders.
Sources close to the couple said they were ‘united in grief’ with the rest of the Royal Family, but added that Meghan, 39, who suffered a miscarriage last year, would be following medical guidance on whether she should make the 11-hour flight from California.
On Saturday Buckingham Palace confirmed that the Duchess of Sussex would not be attending the funeral on April 17 after receiving a ‘physician’s advice’.
Prince Philip, the husband of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth who had been at her side throughout her record-breaking 69-year reign, died at Windsor Castle on April 9.
When the groups of dedicated mourners were asked about Prince Harry’s decision to fly back from the US for the funeral, the decision was met with praise.
Telecommunications manager John Morris, 59, said: ‘Harry should come back. Meghan, I think, okay, she’s got her own issues with the monarchy, but you know Harry I think should be there for his grandfather.
Product manager Sammy Sheng, 36, said: ‘It will be great for Harry to come back as a family, to be part of the family as they gather round and send off his grandfather.’
Telecommunications manager John Morris, 59, (right) said: ‘Harry should come back. Meghan, I think, okay, she’s got her own issues with the monarchy’. Company director Cathy Spooner, 60, said that Meghan should also have made the trip
When the groups of dedicated mourners were asked about Prince Harry’s decision to fly back from the US for the funeral, the decision was met with praise
A tribute left at Windsor Castle for Prince Philip, where crowds have gathered to pay respect
Prince Philip died at Windsor Castle on April 9. Pictured: At Prince Harry and Meghan’s wedding on May 19 2018
‘You know, his grandfather died and it was part of his life, so he should be over here. And okay if its only for a brief visit, okay fine. But hopefully they can make some amends, at least Harry and William might be able to get back together again.’
While 36-year-old product manager Sammy Sheng said: ‘It will be great for Harry to come back as a family, to be part of the family as they gather round and send off his grandfather.
‘But I guess, considering the pregnancy, women travelling such a long distance is not a pleasant journey for her (Meghan).
‘I mean speaking for myself if I had to travel – I don’t know how how many months she’s in now, but it’s quite a long journey, yeah. It’s a shame she can’t attend, but if she can’t travel then it’s unfortunate.’
Clemmie Turner, 37, said she thinks Harry should do what he wants to and that it is the right decision for Meghan to stay in the US because she is pregnant.
She said: ‘I think that he should be doing what he wants to do and he obviously wants to be here. I think that clearly Meghan has been asked to stay behind on doctors orders because she’s obviously very pregnant, and I think she needs to do what’s right for her.’
Sources close to the couple said Meghan and Prince Harry were ‘united in grief’ with the rest of the Royal Family
However, not everyone asked agreed, with 60-year-old company director Cathy Spooner saying that Meghan should also have made the trip.
Ms Spooner said: ‘Yes I’m so pleased Harry is coming back. To me, I think Meghan should come with him to support him, try and show some unity. Part of me understands why she’s not coming back, but I think that’s a mistake.
‘I think she should. I think she should put her differences aside for the sake of a very prestigious royal who has just passed.’
Children are seen placing roses on the gates at Windsor Castle to pay their respects
Five-year-old Billy Turner says: ‘I’ve come to remember how special Prince Philip was.’
People walk towards Windsor Castle to pay their respects to Prince Philip
Mourners outside of Buckingham Palace, London, on April 9, shortly after the news broke
The palace said long-established plans for the funeral had to be redrawn and scaled down because of COVID-19 restrictions, but they remained very much in line with Philip’s wishes.
Prince Philip, who was officially known as the Duke of Edinburgh, will be given a ceremonial royal funeral, not a state funeral, as planned before the pandemic.
But there will be no public processions, and it will be held entirely within the grounds of Windsor Castle and limited to 30 mourners.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said he will not attend to make space for as many family members as possible.
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