Signs of an olive branch? Prince William is spotted extending his arm to Meghan Markle before they step out to meet royal fans in Windsor and read tributes laid for the Queen
- Pictures taken in Windsor shows Prince of Wakes gesturing to Meghan Markle
- Prince William, Prince Harry and their wives greeted royal fans on Saturday
- Move seen as ‘olive branch’ after William invited Sussexes to join him and Kate
The Prince of Wales was captured making a welcoming gesture towards Meghan Markle before their walkabout in Windsor on Saturday.
Prince William, 40, extended an olive branch to his brother the Duke of Sussex on Saturday when he invited him and the Duchess of Sussex, 41, to come and greet royal fans in Windsor Castle with him and the Princess of Wales.
The royal ‘Fab Four’ were reunited for the sad occasion, and were seen walking out of the royal estate side by side.
A clip from Sky News showed how Prince William gently extended an arm towards his sister-in-law Meghan before they stepped out of the gates, in a sign of encouragement.
The Prince of Wales was captured making a welcoming gesture towards Meghan Markle before their walkabout in Windsor on Saturday
Prince William, 40, extended an olive branch to his brother the Duke of Sussex on Saturday when he invited him and the Duchess of Sussex, 41, to come greet royal fans in Windsor Castle with him and the Princess of Wakes
The moment was captured by news cameras after Kate Middleton, Prince William, Prince Harry and Meghan stepped out of their Range Rovers and prepared to go on their walkabout by the Windsor Castle gates.
A hesitant Meghan could be see standing a few steps away from the car, while the Duke of Sussex was stood close to his brother and Kate.
Noticing this, Prince William gallantly gestured towards Meghan to invite her to join their conversation and introduce her to the aide who had come to greet the senior royals.
The foursome were greeted by applause as they walked through the gates of Windsor Castle together to honour the legacy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
The Duchess was handed multiple bouquets of flowers by royal fans waiting in the crowd, but appeared to be keen to hold onto them
The mother-of-two seemed to insist she wanted to keep the flowers as several aides tried to convince her to hand the bouquet over
Meghan was seen cooing over babies in the crowd and even offered hugs out to some of the mourners waiting – but others in the crowd greeted Meghan with stony faces as she took part in the walkabout.
Saturday’s reunion marked the first time that the two couples have all appeared in public since Commonwealth Day on March 9, 2020, just weeks before the Covid lockdown.
Harry and Meghan, who sensationally quit frontline duties two years ago to strike out on their own in California before making a series of bombshell allegations against The Firm, held hands as they looked at the tributes, with Harry at one point affectionately putting his hand on Meghan’s back.
Harmony? The Princes appeared to have put their troubles to one side to honour the Queen’s memory
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex view the tributes left after the death of Queen Elizabeth II, at Windsor Castle on Saturday
The ‘fab four’ reunited at Windsor to mourn the death of The Queen; it was the first time the couples have been together in public since March 2020
Harry and Meghan may fly in their children for the Queen’s funeral
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle may fly Archie and Lilibet to the UK for the Queen’s funeral service, it has been suggested.
The US-based Duke and Duchess of Sussex have reportedly confirmed they will be staying in Britain until the end of the royal mourning period, which finishes seven days after the service on September 19.
However, the couple’s children, Archie, three, and Lilibet, one, remain in California with Meghan’s mother Doria Ragland, 66, and have already spent more than a week apart from their parents, who were coming to the end of a whistlestop tour to Europe when the Queen died on Thursday.
According to The Telegraph, the Sussexes are now trying to work out whether Doria and the children should fly out to the UK.
Yesterday, a spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess confirmed the couple will stay in the UK for the period of royal mourning, reported The Express.
Meghan and Harry had only expected to be away from their Montecito mansion for seven days for their mini European tour, in which they were supporting various charities close to their hearts.
However, the Queen’s death at Balmoral on Thursday, aged 96, pushed them to extend their stay in the UK.
On Saturday evening, Prince William and Kate Middleton, and Meghan and Harry made a surprise appearance together at Windsor Castle to inspect the sea of floral tributes laid outside the gates of the Berkshire estate in tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth II.
The reunion marks the first time that the two couples have all appeared in public since Commonwealth Day on March 9, 2020, just weeks before the Covid lockdown.
Harry and Meghan, who quit frontline duties two years ago to strike out on their own in California and then levied a series of bombshell allegations against The Firm, held hands as they looked at the tributes, with Harry at one point affectionately putting his hand on Meghan’s back.
They were seen pointing at different tributes and discussing them as members of the crowd waved at them.
One well-wisher who spoke to Harry and Meghan told MailOnline: ‘It’s lovely to see them both together. Maybe they can get back to a proper relationship.
‘Lovely ripple went through the crowd as they approached. Hopefully the healing between Harry and his brother can start now. I’m just so excited to have seen them both together. It’s lovely.’
Another mourner said: ‘We couldn’t believe it when the gates opened, and we saw William and Harry walk down with Meghan and Kate. I’ll be honest there was a little bit of a groan when Harry and Meghan came down our side, but I passed him a bunch of flowers and he was happy to take them.
‘I’m pleased that they came out together and as a family I’m delighted that they all took the time to come and say hello to the crowds. Sad things like funerals bring families together so I hope that when they get back to California they think long and hard about everything that’s happened.’
Harry only took place after an extended negotiation which delayed the Sussexes arrival by at least 45 minutes.
Royal sources say William attempted to bury the hatchet by extending an ’11th-hour olive branch’ to his younger brother Harry, by asking him to join him on a walkabout outside Windsor Castle following a phone call with his father Charles III.
In a scene that clearly delighted royal fans, who had come in their hundreds to the gates of the Windsor estate to mourn the Queen’s death, William and Harry walked out side-by-side with wives Kate and Meghan.
Last night, a Kensington Palace spokesman said that the Prince of Wales had invited the Sussexes to join him and the Princess of Wales during yesterday evening’s walkabout.
However, according to The Times, the camps required extended negotiations beforehand which delayed their arrival by 45 minutes.
A senior Palace source said: ‘The Prince of Wales invited the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to join him and the Princess of Wales earlier. The Prince of Wales thought it was an important show of unity for the Queen at an incredibly difficult time for the family.’
Experts predict the moment could provide a turning point in the frayed relationship between newly-titled Waleses, and the Sussexes, who have been at odds following a series of damaging interviews by Harry and Meghan.
They were seen pointing at different tributes and discussing them as members of the crowd waved.
A Kensington Palace source said that the Prince of Wales invited the Sussexes to join him and the Princess of Wales earlier on Saturday.
The Sussexes’ friend and preferred journalist Omid Scobie later claimed on Twitter that the invitation was made at the ’11th hour’.
However, hinting that William is prepared to extend Harry an olive branch and work towards melting the ice between them, he declared: ‘It is, without a doubt, a significant moment in the history of the relationship between the two brothers.’
At one moment, a small Paddington Bear was given to William, which he passed on to an aide. He was seen lightly touching Kate’s back at one moment as she crouched down again to speak to a child at the front of the gates.
As the child began to cry, the Princess of Wales knelt down to say hello – prompting the little one to stop crying.
Meanwhile the Duchess of Sussex was seen being given a close hug by a young girl in the crowd at Windsor Castle.
Meghan walked over to a section of the crowd and approached a teenager, who was seen putting her hand over her mouth in shock. The pair spoke briefly for a few moments and Meghan could be seen assuring her by putting her hand on her shoulder.
The girl then said: ‘Can I have a hug?’ and Meghan was seen nodding, before leaning in and giving her a big hug. The touching moment was filmed by other members in the crowd.
A TikTok video of the moment revealed the Duchess had told royal fan Amelka Zak, 14, that she had a ‘beautiful’ name and thanked her for coming to pay tribute.
It comes as it is believed that William and Harry could walk side by side behind the Queen’s coffin at her funeral next week in a potential royal truce, according to reports.
Days after the Prince of Wales offered his brother an ‘olive branch’ by inviting him on a walkaround to meet mourners outside Windsor, there is a suggestion they could put their differences aside during the time of national mourning.
The pair had been separated by their cousin Peter Phillips at the funeral of Prince Phillip last year, and since then have only been seen in public together once before Saturday’s surprise walk.
What form the truce takes at the Queen’s funeral on Monday, September 19, remains to be seen, with reports suggesting that Prince Andrew is also set to play a key role despite controversies in the last few years.
The Duke of York is expected to join his family as they unite in their grief, with sources saying it would be ‘out of the question’ for him to be excluded.
However, despite this apparent reprieve for the disgraced prince, there would seem to be no way back into public life for him, with both the king and the Prince of Wales previously saying he would have no formal role during their reigns.
It comes as the Royal Family attempts to put on a united front during the period of national mourning, as they try to put aside their differences for the greater good following the passing of Queen Elizabeth II at Balmoral on Thursday.
While arrangements for the funeral service are still being ironed out, there are reports that discussions are underway that could see William and Harry stand side by side during the procession.
It would mark a significant improvement in their relationship – at the funeral of their grandfather, Prince Philip in April last year, the pair were separated by their cousin Peter Phillips.
However, relations between the brothers seem to have improved since then, with William inviting Harry to meet wellwishers and mourners outside Windsor on Saturday.
The 11th-hour ‘olive branch’ was offered by William to his brother as hundreds of people gathered outside the royal residence to pay tribute to Her Majesty.
The brothers, accompanied by their wives, greeted mourners outside the gates of the Windsor Castle and thanked them for their tributes and condolences.
The Sun reports an insider as saying: ‘We are certainly not in the same place as Philip’s funeral when William and Harry didn’t walk side by side.
‘Things haven’t changed but it is not as intense and they can co-exist.
‘But the flower visit really doesn’t change anything. It is the same situation as at Prince Philip’s funeral when William and Harry put their differences aside and supported each other and their families in that moment.’
The temporary nature of the truce could be laid bare in the coming months with Harry set to release his ‘tell-all’ memoirs and Meghan set to continue her series of podcasts.
King Charles says he wants ‘to express my love for Harry and Meghan’ as he extends olive branch to the US-based prince and his wife
King Charles III extended an olive branch to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in his first address to Britain and the world as monarch yesterday.
The new Sovereign, who became King the moment that his mother Queen Elizabeth II passed away on Thursday afternoon at Balmoral Castle aged 96, said he wished to ‘express my love for Harry and Meghan as they continue to build their lives overseas’ – in a move likely to be regarded by royal commentators as a bid to finally draw a line under the tumult of recent years.
Catherine, Princess of Wales, Prince William, Prince of Wales, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex on the long Walk at Windsor Castle to greet well-wishers
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex plunged the monarchy into crisis during the twilight years of the Queen’s reign after sensationally quitting frontline royal duties and moving to California two years ago – a saga which precipitated the rift between Harry and his brother William, allegations of racism against the royals and claims the Firm failed to help a suicidal Meghan.
After their bombshell interview with US talk show host Oprah Winfrey, Harry appeared to suggest, in a mental health podcast, that his father and the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh had all failed as parents – while the family was still mourning Prince Philip’s death last year.
The Duke of Sussex had grief etched on his face as he was swept into the grounds of Windsor Castle this afternoon after losing a race against time to get to his grandmother’s bedside before she died yesterday.
King Charles III went to Buckingham Palace to meet fellow mourners this afternoon where he shook hands and accepted their condolences to cries of ‘God save the King’ and impromptu renditions of the national anthem. One woman kissed him on the cheek. He also inspected flowers and tributes left for his late mother at the gates before entering the palace.
Harry landed at Heathrow yesterday lunchtime after jumping on an early morning BA flight where he comforted an airport worker with a reassuring hand on her shoulder after she gave him her condolences.
He left Balmoral after 12 hours mourning his grandmother with his father and brother – but despite the brevity of the visit, the Sussexes are not expected to return to California until after the state funeral, currently expected to be ten days from now on Monday, September 19.
The Duke of Sussex was the last royal to arrive at the Aberdeenshire castle on Thursday and the first to leave on Friday morning.
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