UK’s Harry and Meghan to drop titles and retire as working royals

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Buckingham Palace says Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, will no longer use the titles “royal highness” or receive public funds under a deal struck Saturday for them to step aside as senior royals.

Buckingham Palace said Harry and Meghan will cease to be working members of the royal family when the new arrangements take effect in “spring 2020.” They will be known as Harry, Duke and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex.

The couple will no longer use the titles His Royal Highness and Her Royal Highness, but they are not being stripped of them. Harry will remain a prince and sixth in line to the British throne.

The palace says the couple will repay some 2.4 million pounds ($3.1 million) of taxpayers’ money that was spent renovating their home near Windsor Castle.

In a statement Saturday, Queen Elizabeth II said she was pleased that pleased that “together we have found a constructive and supportive way forward for my grandson and his family. Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family.”

The announcement came after days of talks among royal courtiers sparked by Meghan and Harry’s announcement last week that they wanted to step down as senior royals and live part-time in North America.

Buckingham Palace did not disclose who will pay for the couple’s currently taxpayer-funded security. The palace said it did not comment “on the details of security arrangements.

There are well established independent processes to determine the need for publicly funded security.”

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