Feb 14, 2020 11:35 AM PST
The fallout from Megxit continues. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have officially closed their Buckingham Palace office and fired the 15 staff members who worked for them. According to The Daily Mail, this is the “surest sign yet” that Harry, Meghan, and their son Archie Harrison will never live in the UK again.
The outlet reports that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex told their staff in person that they were being let go after they announced to the world via Instagram in early January that they were stepping down as senior members of the royal family.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry AXE all 15 of their UK staff in surest sign yet they will never return to Britain to live https://t.co/3e2gRhfQgP pic.twitter.com/tzFeRRRtaM
— Daily Mail U.K. (@DailyMailUK) February 14, 2020
One or two staff members might be assigned to other jobs in the royal household, but it appears that the majority of them are “negotiating redundancy packages.”
“Given their decision to step back, an office at Buckingham Palace is no longer needed,” explained an insider. “While the details are still being finalized and efforts are being made to redeploy people within the royal household, unfortunately there will be some redundancies.”
Harry and Meghan’s newly-appointed private secretary, Fiona Mcilwham, and their communications chief Sara Latham are expected to receive other positions with the royal family. However, Clara Loughran – who was Prince Harry’s longtime program coordinator – has been fired. This comes as a bit of a surprise because Loughran was so important to Prince Harry that she handed Meghan her bouquet on their wedding day.
Assistant communications secretary Marnie Gaffney also got the axe, but she was also offered another role at Buckingham Palace. However, she opted for the redundancy package after working for the royal household for a decade.
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“After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution. We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment. We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honour our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages. This geographic balance will enable us to raise our son with an appreciation for the royal tradition into which he was born, while also providing our family with the space to focus on the next chapter, including the launch of our new charitable entity. We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties. Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support.” – The Duke and Duchess of Sussex For more information, please visit sussexroyal.com (link in bio) Image © PA
A post shared by The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (@sussexroyal) on Jan 8, 2020 at 10:33am PST
Assistant communications secretary Julie Burley and social media expert David Watkins have also lost their jobs. One source claims that Megxit was “a complete shock” to the staff, but most understand and respect their decision.
“They are all close and supporting each other. The team are busy helping to set their Royal Highnesses up for the future and working on a series of final engagements,” said the source.
“I don’t think it will comes as surprise to anyone that these have been incredibly trying circumstances for their team, who have experienced some very difficult times of late,” adds another insider. “They are all good people, very loyal and brilliant at their jobs, and everyone feels incredibly sorry for them.”
Prince Harry’s last engagement as the Captain-General of the Royal Marines will be at the Mountbatten Festival of Music at the Royal Albert Hall on March 7th. Harry and Meghan are also expected to attend the Commonwealth Day service on March 9th.