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British Royals

Harry and Meghan’s former patronages thank them as their official associations come to an end


Mark Thomas/ i-Images

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been thanked by several of the organisations of which they were royal patrons as their official associations with them come to an end.

Buckingham Palace announced on February 19th that Harry and Meghan had decided to permanently step back from their roles as senior members of the Royal Family. Their military associations and royal patronages would now cease, a statement confirmed, and in time, these roles would be given to working members of the Royal Family. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex said that they would continue to offer their support to the organisations despite losing their official roles with them.

As the news came through, The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust offered its thanks to the couple on social media. Harry had been their President and Meghan their Vice President. in a statement, the Trust said ”we have been very lucky to have had the keen support and encouragement of The Duke and Duchess of Sussex in our formative years. They have enabled us to make fast progress and have helped us take the organisation to readiness for its next phase. We are glad that they remain in our circle of supporters.”

The Duke of Sussex also steps down as Patron of England Rugby who released a statement, saying ”We would like to thank Prince Harry for his time and commitment to the RFU both in his position as Patron and Vice Patron. The RFU has greatly valued his contribution to promoting and supporting the game.”

His official links to the Rugby Football League also come to an end. That organisation said ”The Rugby Football League thanks The Duke of Sussex for his time, care and commitment in supporting Rugby League at all levels in recent years – from the children’s game to the Challenge Cup, the England teams and RLWC2021.”

The National Theatre confirmed the process of finding a new royal patron to replace The Duchess of Sussex was under way. In a statement, it said it is ”very grateful for the support offered by The Duchess of Sussex throughout the course of her patronage. The Duchess championed our work with communities and young people across the UK, and our mission to make theatre accessible to all.”

The Duchess of Sussex is also stepping down as royal patron of the Association of Commonwealth Universities. Both Meghan and Harry will retain their personal patronages including the Invictus Foundation for the Duke and Mayhew and Smartworks for the Duchess.

About author

Lydia Starbuck is Associate Editor at Royal Central and the main producer and presenter of the Royal Central Podcast and Royal Central Extra. Lydia is also a pen name of June Woolerton, a journalist and writer with over twenty years experience in TV, radio, print and online. June has been a reporter, producer and editor, picking up several awards over the years. She's appeared on outlets including BBC 5 Live, BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Local Radio and has also helped set up a commercial radio station. June is also an accomplished writer with a wide range of material published online and in print. She is the author of two novels, published as e-books. She is also a marriage registrar and ceremony celebrant.