Why Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s King Charles Coronation Attendance Is Up in the Air

Yesterday, the Palace announced that King Charles III’s coronation would take place on May 6, 2023—coincidentally the 4th birthday of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s first child Archie. At this point, it is unclear whether the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will fly to England to attend the ceremony, although Entertainment Tonight reports they will of course be invited, and King Charles and Camilla, the Queen Consort, want them there.

Royal expert Katie Nicholl explained, “Behind the scenes, Camilla has done really everything she can to try and bring this family back together, and press the importance of trying to move on from this rift, and I think she would be very pleased, as would the king for Harry and Meghan to be at the coronation.”

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“It remains to be seen whether or not they attend,” Nicholl continued. “But of course, it will be down to the Sussexes to make the ultimate decision as to whether they’re going to come over for King Charles’ coronation on May the 6th.” Nicholl said that Meghan, Harry, and other senior and extended royal family members are likely to be invited to the coronation, although the guest list hasn’t been revealed yet.

She also stressed that Charles did not intend to “snub” Meghan and Harry by staging his coronation on their son’s birthday. “Having the coronation on Archie’s birthday is definitely not a snub. I think it’s very much a happy coincidence,” Nicholl said. “Obviously, a huge amount of planning has to go into an important moment in history, such as a coronation, and the royal calendar is full of anniversaries and birthdays, so I think this is absolutely one of those occasions where it’s a coincidence and hopefully a happy coincidence.”

The Palace announced yesterday on its site that the coronation would take place at Westminster Abbey. “The Coronation Ceremony will take place at Westminster Abbey, London, and will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury,” read the statement. “The Ceremony will see His Majesty King Charles III crowned alongside The Queen Consort. The Coronation will reflect the monarch’s role today and look towards the future, while being rooted in longstanding traditions and pageantry. Further details will be announced in due course.”

Harper’s Bazaar reported that the coronation would be “pared down,” given Britain is in the midst of a cost of living crisis and close to a recession. “[It] will retain the same core religious elements as others before it, the ceremony will be lighter on pomp and opulence in an effort to recognize ‘the spirit of our times,’” royal reporter Omid Scobie wrote for the outlet.

Alyssa Bailey is the senior news and strategy editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage of celebrities and royals (particularly Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton). She previously held positions at InStyle and Cosmopolitan. When she’s not working, she loves running around Central Park, making people take #ootd pics of her, and exploring New York City.