It’s hard to know what exactly had been going on behind closed doors in the wake of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s bombshell announcement about leaving their royal duties behind. One report suggests that they were “driven out” by the royal family, who find them difficult, but is there any truth to this rumor?
Were Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ‘driven out’ of the royal family?
After Prince Harry and Markle dropped the big announcement that they would be taking a “step back” from their roles, the rumors were flying, with buzz that Prince Harry didn’t consult with Queen Elizabeth about their plans.
ITV News At Ten anchor Tom Bradby, who interviewed the Sussexes for the documentary Harry & Meghan: An African Journey, believes he has some insights into the matter, claiming they were “driven out” and that there were “fallouts” and “really bad personal splits” within the family.
Speaking on his ITV News program, he explained: “It’s certainly not true to say the palace were blindsided by this. The couple’s view was they came back and wanted to talk to the family about their plans. It had been made clear to them in their absence there was going to be a slimmed down monarchy and they weren’t really a part of it.”
Bradby shared: “There have been a lot of fallouts. A lot of harsh things were said around the time of the wedding. And it’s just gone a bit too far. And, certainly, the rest of the family find Harry and Meghan very difficult and, from Harry and Meghan’s point of view, they’re just being driven out as they see it. And it’s sad.”
Inside their decision to quit the family
Bradby further shared some of the thought process that went into Prince Harry and Markle’s decision, noting, “My impression is they’re pretty philosophical about it. [It’s] ‘We are making a break for independence and freedom here. You wanted a slimmed-down monarchy. There’s no place for us in it. We need to learn to live on our own. We want to get on and do that.'”
He continued: “They’re philosophical as in ‘it’s up to you [the family] — protection, Frogmore, everything else, the titles. You want to take it all away, fine. That’s OK. But it’s sort of up to you. We’d like to be involved, we’d like to do our charities, we’d like to support the Queen and we’d like to do stuff through the Commonwealth, but we accept that we have got no right to do that any more.’”
Bradby believes that the decision came about less because of the media scrutiny the Sussexes have faced but more about the family rift that’s developed. He noted: “Not their battle with the media itself but the split within the family about it. In their eyes, they’re on a moral mission to take on the media or the tabloid media.”
He continued: “Their view is, ‘If we don’t stand up to it, who’s going to? We have to take a lead on this.’ They think their family kowtows to the media and plays the game, the ‘game that killed my mother’ as Harry would put it.”
“So a bit of it is about that,” Bradby confirmed, sharing, “The rest of the family thinks this is mad — you can win a battle against the media, but not the war.”
The situation is “so toxic”
Bradby further relayed how the climate is “so toxic” for everyone involved, but is hopeful that once the dust settles, there will be some peace.
He explained: “There are going to be so many complications, so many controversies. There needs to be a peace deal really soon because this is so toxic, there’s so much anger and, to be honest with you, at the moment it looks like it might get worse, not better.”
Royal family sources deny that Prince Harry and Markle were “driven out”
Despite Bradby’s claims, however, royal family insiders have denied that the Sussexes were “driven out.”
One palace aide told The Times: “I don’t think you could point to any evidence of them being forced out, or made to feel unwelcome. The future of the monarchy always had the Sussexes very much at the heart of it, and perhaps still will depending on what structures they arrive at.”
Another aide remarked: “It is strongly disputed that the Sussexes are not at the center of any future slimmed-down monarchy.”