Meghan Markle and Prince Harry May Have Difficulties Without ‘Royal-Style Logistics’, Princess Diana’s Former Private Secretary Says

Princess Diana’s former private secretary is sharing concerns he has about Meghan, Duchess of Sussex and Harry, Duke of Sussex as prepare for life after their time as senior members of the British royal family ends. 

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced their decision to step back as working royals in Jan. 2020 on the heels of a 6-week hiatus they spent in the U.S. and Canada with their 9-month-old son, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor, away from the harsh glare of the royal spotlight. 

Patrick Jephson, who once worked for the late Diana, offered up his concerns about Meghan and Harry’s exit in a Feb. 28 article for Vanity Fair. He discussed potential problems for them once they no longer have the resources they used to have as senior royals, many of which he saw Diana experience when she and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales separated in 1992 ahead of their highly publicized divorce in 1996

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry may face similar challenges to Princess Diana

Jephson compared Harry and Meghan’s current struggle with that of the Duke of Sussex’s late mother. He said try as they might there’s no replacement for the royal family’s management style. 

“The unwelcome reality is harsh but simple: to deliver the kind of humanitarian message associated with her brand, and to maintain the profile her philanthropic ambitions required, there was no substitute for the royal-style logistics that previously surrounded Diana,” Jephson wrote in the article. 

Patrick Jephson and Princess Diana on Sept. 10, 1989
Patrick Jephson and Princess Diana on Sept. 10, 1989 | Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images

He continued, saying without her status — Diana had been stripped of her royal title Her Royal Highness when she and Charles divorced — money influenced her desires.

“Deprived of full royal status, she inevitably fell back on the practical benefits — planes, limousine, and bodyguards — that only wealth could provide,” he said. 

Jephson went on, saying the same could surely happen to the Duke and Duchess Sussex. Meghan and Harry need things that come along with the royal lifestyle. 

“They need the stuff only wealth can provide, but chafe at the obligations and scrutiny of royalty,” he wrote. “Yet without royal status, their long-term earning potential could be in doubt—and the power of their celebrity may also diminish the longer they stay away from Buckingham Palace.”

Meghan Markle and  Prince Harry attend The Endeavour Fund Awards on March 05, 2020, in London, England
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry attend The Endeavour Fund Awards on March 05, 2020, in London, England | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Certainly, with Canada ceasing to pay for Meghan and Harry’s security detail, they’ll have to figure out a solution and fast. Some have wondered if Harry’s father, Prince Charles, Prince of Wales will foot the bill meanwhile people in the U.K. have been signing a petition saying they don’t want to pay for Meghan and Harry’s security detail because they no longer live there.

Patrick Jephson says ‘comforting routine’ will draw Prince Harry back to royal life

Jephson also commented on whether or not he thinks Harry and Meghan will stay steadfast in their decision to step down as senior royals. Diana’s private secretary feels the “comforting routine” that comes with royal life will be something Harry misses in his new life. Ultimately, he feels it’s the routine that will make the Duke of Sussex return. 

“Not this year perhaps, or even next, but eventually the lost familiarity of habit, tradition, and a comforting routine may tug at the Duke’s heart,” he wrote before adding that slowly Diana’s calendar became filled with activities she wanted to get away from. 

Only time will tell how the Duke and Duchess of Sussex adapt to their new lives outside of the protection (and scrutiny) afforded to them as senior royals.