Meghan Markle: Royal experts weigh in and explain her decision to not return to the UK

Prince Harry is returning to the UK next week for Invictus Games Foundation’s 10th anniversary but Meghan Markle will not accompany him. Royal experts weigh in on why she may have taken this decision.

Prince Harry Meghan Markle Invictus Games Foundation 10th anniversary Why will Meghan not return to the UK with Prince Harry
© Max Mumby/Getty_Images
Prince Harry Meghan Markle Invictus Games Foundation 10th anniversary Why will Meghan not return to the UK with Prince Harry

Prince Harry is returning to the UK for one of his official engagements next week. It is Invictus Games Foundation’s 10th anniversary and the Duke will attend a Special Thanksgiving Service on May 8 at St. Paul's Cathedral. While the Duke is returning to the UK for the event, Meghan Markle has decided to stay home at their £11M Montecito mansion with their kids Prince Archie and Princess Lillibet.

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Meghan has attended many events surrounding Invictus since 2017 with Prince Harry. Earlier this year, she even went to Canada with the Duke for Invictus Games 2025’s One Year To Go event.

Real reason why Meghan Markle is not returning to the UK

As such, her absence from the upcoming anniversary event - something that is very significant for the foundation - has raised a lot of questions. Although, it may be a good thing for the Royal Family, especially King Charles, as he has left the door open for a reconciliation with only Prince Harry.

Many reasons have been cited for Meghan’s absence from the UK event, from childcare to security issues. However, the fact that Meghan is travelling to Nigeria with Prince Harry right after his UK visit hints that her decision has nothing to do with either of the aforementioned issues.

According to The Express, former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond believes that Meghan’s recent decision appears to be ‘the clearest indication’ that she never wants to return to the UK. She explained:

The fact that she is going to Nigeria completely negates the argument that it is the issue of security that is keeping her away.
I’m afraid this does seem to be the clearest indication yet that Meghan really doesn’t want to return to the UK.

Jennie added that the Sussex couple - who have a net worth of £48 million - will get ‘official security in Nigeria’ and they are expected to get similar security while they are in the UK. She added:

And few people would argue that Nigeria is a safer place than the UK. So the only conclusion we can draw is that Meghan has absolutely no desire to set foot in the UK again.

Prince Harry made a quick run to visit his father earlier in 2024 after his worrying health diagnosis. The Duke has undoubtedly made it clear that he cares for his family. Indeed, during an appearance on Good Morning America, he confessed that he loves his family and is ‘grateful’ to have been able to visit his father, reports Express.

He added that his work engagements will take him back to the UK this year and he would definitely ‘stop in and see my family as much as I can.’ As such, Meghan’s reluctance to return with him to the UK is ‘sad.’ Jennie claims:

It must be sad for Harry who has made it clear that he loves his family here, and wants his children to know and understand their heritage.

Is Meghan Markle worried about her reception in the UK?

Meghan has not made an appearance in the UK since September 2022 when she came to the country after Queen Elizabeth’s death. Prince Harry, on the other hand, has made few trips to the UK ever since. The Invictus Games ‘hold a special place’ for the Sussex couple as they made their first public appearance together at the 2017 sporting event.

Amidst this, Meghan’s decision to not return to the UK might stem from the concern about her reception in the country. Royal expert Jennie Bond along with Royal Editor for the Mail on Sunday Charlotte Griffiths claimed that Meghan would be worried about the reception she would receive if she were to arrive in the UK. Jennie said:

I suppose it’s not surprising because there would be a huge amount of doubt about what kind of reception she would get. But it is sad.

Meanwhile, Charlotte claimed that the Duchess - who has a ‘curious’ way of running a business - ‘knows she would get a bad reception.’ She added:

If she was to come to the UK, it would be really difficult.
It would bring up terrible memories of the past for her and awkward moments when she was in various churches and things.

Meanwhile, Jennie told OK! Magazine that this is ‘a dilemma’ for Prince Harry and ‘it’s not going to go away.’ Charlotte also added the decision is ‘so sad’ as Prince Harry will be ‘so lonely’ at the May 8 event, confirms Express. Citing the reason for it, she added:

That's where his parents got married. It's going to be a very sombre and serious event.

Queen Camilla’s presence at King Charles' meeting with Prince Harry

What’s more for the Duke? It has been revealed that Queen Camilla is going to be with King Charles in any meeting that he may hold with Prince Harry during his visit to the UK. At this point, there are no doubts about a meeting being held between the father-son duo despite claims that he will not see Prince William and Kate Middleton.

But Prince Harry’s meeting with King Charles may not be as smooth sailing as he would expect. Royal expert Tom Quinn believes Queen Camilla's presence will help King Charles to better navigate the potential reconciliation meeting with Prince Harry. He claimed that the meeting would be longer than his last visit (a 30-45 mins meeting in February) and said:

Camilla is likely to be there simply because she feels so protective of her husband and won’t want him to be upset at such a difficult time.

Defending the Queen Consort, Quinn explained that she’s ‘exceptionally diplomatic’ and good at dealing with difficult situations. The Sussex couple have been a problematic element for the Royal Family ever since they stepped down from their senior royal position. Any meeting held with them is undertaken with due caution as The Firm doesn’t trust the couple. Tom added:

If anyone can steer comfortably through a meeting with Harry, Camilla can – which is why Charles will want her there.

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Sources Used

The Express: Meghan Markle's refusal to return to UK has 'nothing to do with security or childcare'

The Express: The 'real reason' King Charles will want Queen Camilla at any meeting with Prince Harry

OK! Magazine: Prince Harry's dilemma 'that won't go away' - as Meghan 'has no desire' to return to UK

The Express: Meghan Markle skipping 'awkward' UK trip as it could bring up 'terrible memories'

Royal expert claims Meghan Markle is behind Prince Harry and Prince William’s communication Royal expert claims Meghan Markle is behind Prince Harry and Prince William’s communication