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Buckingham Palace denies Meghan’s claim that officials ‘dictated’ her name change

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Buckingham Palace today denied it ‘dictated’ that Meghan Markle should remove her first names from son Archie’s birth certificate a month after he was born.

‘Rachel Meghan’ was taken off the document to leave just ‘Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Sussex‘ with royal protocol blamed by the LA-based couple’s US PR team.

Buckingham Palace has refused to comment but a royal source said that it was Prince Harry and Meghan’s own aides at Kensington Palace who made the changes – and it had nothing to do with the Queen or her staff.

‘The certificate was changed by the former office of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. It was changed to ensure consistency of the name and title of the Duchess with other private documents’, an insider confirmed to MailOnline.

Another source told The Telegraph that the Sussexes’ US media team had made a mistake and suggested something had been ‘lost in translation’. The unnamed insider said their angry statement ‘posed more questions than it answered’ and the use of the work ‘dictated’ was unfortunate.

The aide added: ‘These are civil documents, there is no protocol.’ 

Archie's birth was registered on May 17, 2019, after his birth on May 6. A month later, on June 6, the name was changed on the certificate (pictured before the change)

Archie’s birth was registered on May 17, 2019, after his birth on May 6. A month later, on June 6, the name was changed on the certificate (pictured before the change)

In June the entry was changed and 'Rachel Meghan' was taken off to leave just 'Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Sussex'

In June the entry was changed and ‘Rachel Meghan’ was taken off to leave just ‘Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Sussex’

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's US media team said it had been 'dictated' by the Palace. Buckingham Palace has denied it was anything to do with them

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex's US media team said the change to Archie's birth certificate had been 'dictated' by the Palace. Buckingham Palace has denied it was anything to do with them

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s US media team said the change to Archie’s birth certificate had been ‘dictated’ by the Palace. Buckingham Palace has denied it was anything to do with them

Harry and Meghan’s son Archie was born on May 6, 2019, and the birth registered on May 17. The name change was made on June 5 but has only now come to light. 

Will Archie ever meet his British family? Meghan Markle is ‘unlikely’ to join Prince Harry when he returns to the UK to see his family for the first time since Megxit 

In June and July there are some important dates on the royal calendar that Meghan might miss

In June and July there are some important dates on the royal calendar that Meghan might miss

The Duchess of Sussex is ‘unlikely’ to accompany her husband, Prince Harry, when he plans to return to the UK in early summer. 

Insiders stress that the couple’s plans have yet to be finalised and much depends on the pandemic and whether travel restrictions remain in place at the time.

But their understanding, at this time, is that Harry, 36, will fly to the UK to see the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William – along with his niece and nephews – without Meghan and, probably, their son Archie.  

Sources were at pains to stress that Meghan’s tentative decision not to accompany her husband is for ‘personal and practical’ reasons and is not in any way being construed as a ‘snub’.

But if she decides not to travel it will save royal officials something of a diplomatic headache.

The couple had been expected to attend key royal events in June, including Prince Philip’s 100th birthday celebrations and Trooping The Colour, the official celebration of the Queen’s 95th birthday.

Harry is also due in the UK in July for the long-awaited unveiling of the statue that he and William commissioned in memory of Diana at Kensington Palace. 

A source said: ‘It should be strongly stressed that there is still an element of uncertainty about this because of the unpredictable Covid situation, but the understanding is the duke is more than likely to come back on his own.

‘This is a personal and practical decision by the couple, but it would certainly help officials navigate what is likely to be a fairly tricky situation.’

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The name change revelation in The Sun on Sunday surprised many royal insiders and sparked speculation about why Meghan and husband Prince Harry made the change in June 2019. 

Harry and Meghan’s US PR team said later it was ‘dictated by the Palace’ in an attack on the British press. 

The spokesman blasted newspapers ‘and their carnival of so-called experts’ and said the removal of Rachel Meghan ‘was dictated by the Palace, as confirmed by documents from senior palace officials. This was not requested by Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, nor by the Duke of Sussex’. 

The couple’s spokesman did not name which palace demanded it.  

The highly unusual move left royal watchers perplexed. 

Michael Rhodes, editor of Peerage News, said: ‘I fail to see why Archie’s certificate required any alterations. No status is changed because of it. Meghan became HRH The Duchess of Sussex upon marriage and remains so’.

Royal expert Ingrid Seward told The Sun: ‘For a royal to change a birth certificate is unprecedented but to remove forenames is remarkable’.

Others have suggested it may be a nod to Prince Harry’s mother, Princess Diana, who went by title HRH the Princess of Wales. 

15 days after the certificate change Harry and Meghan formally split from the Royal Foundation, which co-ordinated their charitable work with that of Prince William and wife Kate – the so-called Fab Four.

On July 1, they registered a private company under the title ‘Sussex Royal The Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’. However, after the couple revealed their intention to step back as senior royals they agreed not to use ‘Sussex Royal’ as a brand name.

In January 2020 they announced they would be stepping down from duties as frontline royals. 

They later announced their foundation would be called Archewell, which is registered in the US and not endorsed by the Royal Family. 

Prince Harry‘s postponed 2020 Invictus Games has been pushed back again, it has announced today.

The rescheduled event was due to be held in the Hague, the Netherlands, in May this year after being postponed in March last year due to the Covid pandemic.

It has now been pushed back again, this time until Spring 2022, after organisers opted against holding a digital version of the games.

In a statement on the Invictus Games website, organisers said: ‘The Organising Committee are conducting plans to reschedule the Invictus Games to Spring 2022, and a date will soon be confirmed’.

The Mail revealed on Saturday that Meghan, 39, was ‘unlikely’ to accompany her husband when he returns to the UK in July. 

It will be the first time Harry, 36, has seen his family after the couple quit as working royals. 

Meghan, pictured here with her husband and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, is expected to miss the Duke of Edinburgh's 100th birthday, Trooping of the Colour and the unveiling of a memorial to Princess Diana this Summer, with Harry reportedly travelling alone to the UK in July

Meghan, pictured here with her husband and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, is expected to miss the Duke of Edinburgh’s 100th birthday, Trooping of the Colour and the unveiling of a memorial to Princess Diana this Summer, with Harry reportedly travelling alone to the UK in July

The prince is expected to stay at Frogmore Cottage (pictured) at Windsor, the home he and Meghan decided to keep as a UK base

The prince is expected to stay at Frogmore Cottage (pictured) at Windsor, the home he and Meghan decided to keep as a UK base

He is due back for the unveiling of a London statue he and William commissioned of Diana. 

A source said: ‘It should be strongly stressed that there is still an element of uncertainty about this because of the unpredictable Covid situation, but the understanding is the duke is more than likely to come back on his own.

‘This is a personal and practical decision by the couple, but it would certainly help officials navigate what is likely to be a fairly tricky situation.’

This post was first published on DailyMail.

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