Sunday, 14 June 2020

The Duchess Sends Message of Support Marking Grenfell Anniversary & Plans for the Coming Months

Today marks the third anniversary of the horrific Grenfell fire which claimed 72 lives. In a moving message shared with volunteers from the Hubb Community Kitchen, the Duchess of Sussex praised the group describing them as "an example of love in action". 


Meghan told the group how proud she and Harry are: "Now what you have done is such an inspiration, you continue to give back, you continue to to put love in action. And that’s really what Hubb is all about...we know it means love but you are the example of love in action, and that is your purpose. I'm so proud of you, so is Harry, and we are sending so much love to you from across the pond and thinking of you today, as I’m sure it’s a difficult day, but also one where you can look at how much you've accomplished in the past three years, and how you continue to give back and be an example for all of those around you."


Below, a photo from one of Harry and Meghan's private visits to the kitchen shared by Leemz_Hubb.


More from the Evening Standard:

'The duchess also teamed up with the Hubb Community Kitchen to create her Together cookbook, which by last summer had raised more than £550,000 for the charity after selling 130,000 copies. The book, featuring 50 recipes from the women and foreword from Meghan, aimed to raise £250,000 but accounts from The Royal Foundation showed the target was smashed.
Survivors and families of the victims have pleaded with the public not to forget about the inferno, which started in a fourth-floor flat and spread through combustible cladding that wrapped the tower to become the worst domestic blaze since World War Two.
Nicholas Burton, 52, was rescued from this 19th-floor flat on the night of the inferno, along with his wife, Pily, who died of a stroke seven months after the fire. “It is important the fire and those who lost their lives are never forgotten. Every day is a Grenfell day to me. There is not a day that goes by when I don’t think about that night,” he told the Standard.'

What always strikes me about the women of the Hubb is not only their courage and bravery, but their determination to use the space they created to help others. As you'll recall, in April the Duchess reconnected with the women of the Hubb to discuss plans to support the pandemic and to officially back the Evening Standard's "moving" Food for London Now campaign. Meghan said: "The spirit of the Hubb Community Kitchen has always been one of caring, giving back and helping those in need, initially in Grenfell and now throughout the UK. A home-cooked meal from one neighbour to another, when they need it most, is what community is all about." Following a request from Meghan, the group of over seventeen women plan to prepare up to 300 nutritious meals per day working with StreetGames, a charity supported by Harry.


Together: Our Community Cookbook remains available to purchase at a number of booksellers including the Book Depository.


People gathered at the foot of the tower to leave green floral tributes and messages.


The bells of London churches chimed 72 times earlier this evening in memory of those who lost their lives and the families left behind.


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In other news today, Hannah Furness reports in the Telegraph, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will delay the launch of their charitable entity, Archwell, for the time being, in order to refocus their efforts towards Black Lives Matter and COVID-19 pandemic in addition to supporting their causes and patronages:

'Sources said the couple were responding to current affairs, redirecting their efforts to the Black Lives Matter cause and the wider repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic. They have undertaken a series of video calls from their new base in LA, and are preparing for greater public involvement in the fight for equality. 
Sources said Archewell - intended as the home of their charitable activities and as a replacement for their Sussex Royal Foundation -  is now unlikely to be launched this year, with the public unveiling fans were expecting “not on the cards” until 2021.
“What’s absolutely clear is that they want to get it right and there’s no point in rushing,” the source said. “They are settling into a new life, a new era. This is about getting it right and making sure they are able to make the difference they want to make.”
It is understood that the official framework for Archewell is in place, though fans waiting for the Sussexes’ return to social media under their new name will have to wait.'

Hannah Furness notes we can expect to hear more on this from Harry and Meghan during the week ahead. "The couple plan to take a more vocal role in the movement imminently, with action in the coming days."

52 comments:

  1. I'm glad that at the right times, Meghan is showing us that she is still a part of her charitable organizations. She is still an RF member and still a duchess, still married the the heir's son, so there's no reason for her to not continue her past work as well as develop future causes/groups. This was and will always be my favorite work of hers! Such a brilliant idea, and I'm sure it will influence others in the future. It's a hard time to strike the right tone -- so many people are suffering around the world from the pandemic and the economic consequences, and then for all those who thought race relations were pretty good, the truth has to be faced and dealt with. She and Harry have to let people know that they care even though they are not feeling the consequences. I think the fact that Meghan and her mother were not "privileged", that Meghan fought for her rise in the world, means a lot.

    On another note, I think Harry really enjoys being a part of Meghan's world!

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  2. It is wonderful to see this group evolving and expanding in their humanitarian work. It has provide a lot of individual growth, it seems. It is also interesting to see what a dynamic relationship meghan has with her charities and patronages. I also think this group has provided a support for Meghan during her her working royal days. I’m curious to see what she plans to do at the National Theatre. We haven’t heard anything about that, and it must be difficult with an ocean between them. However, she hasn’t dropped this patronage, so I look forward to what develops there.

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  3. That cookbook is one of the best royal projects I've ever seen. Meghan a d the Hubb ladies should be justly proud of what they've done. Not only exceeded their financial goal but expanded into the community as well. Brilliantly done for everyone involved.

    And to see that Meghan is still supporting them is wonderful. What a loss they are to the royal family.

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    1. bluhare, you’re absolutely right! An amazing effort by the Hubb ladies & Meghan.

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    2. bluhare, I agree. I am still so blown away by the cookbook. I think Meghan opened up the range of RF activities to some extent.

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    3. Yes a huge loss.
      Royal 👑 Watcher

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  4. I have so much admiration for the Grenfell women of the Hub. Their book is a testament to immigrant women and to the ability of women to come together for good especially in times of adversity. It is a book that transcends differences and throughout the book one can sense the strength of the friendships forged. The book is beautiful with each recipe a story of life and family left behind and the journey and growth in the new life. It is a book full of positivity and love, a book that can be enjoyed by all women whether or not they are cooks and a book that could be passed down the generations. I commend it to you all.

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  5. humanity at is finest,when we deeply care for each other the world become a better place for all. God bless the Sussex family

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  6. It's good to learn of Meghan's continued public support of the Grenville community and the Hubb Community Kitchen. I think this group will always be close to her heart. Not only did she want to help the victims of the fire and foster their community cooking efforts, but I, too, believe she found true acceptance, love and support there while she tried to navigate the tensions in the royal family.

    R

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  7. Not only did Meghan facilitate a great success for the Hubb, but I always felt she connected deeply and gained understanding friends there which aided her as well. Some of these women lost their families to this tragedy, and yet they decided to make something good of a horrible event, and continue to do so. Meghan has The same "onward" spirit...I salute them all.

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  8. hmm i so proud what the duchess has achieve she is humanitarian and i woman with power

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  9. I'm so happy for Meghan and Harry showing their attitude, with their contacts they have probably opportunities to help many people don't have. Looking forwand to their plans!

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  10. I appreciate that it will be difficult to start up their new charitable trust at this time. However it would be interesting to know how they are keeping up with the other patronages they have including the National Theatre mentioned above. I worry especially about the grassroots ones that Harry was so involved with in developing countries. For example how are Sentebale and its Aids children and the other African organisations conserving wildlife surviving at this very difficult time when fundraising must be a real problem for them. Presumably Harry and Meghan in lockdown are not able to help at the same level as before? Is there any way to find out how things are going with these very worthwhile causes?

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    1. Contact these charities directly for answers and drop them a few quids. Charities all over are struggling. Donations are down. Make a pitch to your nearest Billionaire. The ones in Oz own a few media outlets.

      This is why safety nets shouldn’t depend on charities. Government needs to fund social services and the NHS instead of defunding them. It’s doesn’t help for people to suggest getting mental help when you can’t access a mental health professional. Developing countries are struggling during the pandemic and global recession and the royals and their helpers are stuck unable to do garden parties like everybody else. The U.K. is going into debt as it’s spending many billions to prop up its own economy. NZ is in a recession pickle like the rest of us. You just have a more competent PM and government.

      The beauty of pitching in is you don’t need a royal seal of approval or being on a well publicized zoom call to help. In my town, there are no royal charities. We have government services and the non profits along with local neighborliness to help one another. It’s basic humanity.

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    2. Anon 17:46, where do you live? It sounds like your town is more organized than most.

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  11. I am confused as to why delay the launch. Archwell could have provided them a bigger platform to support BLM and charities helping people affected by COVID-19. They could have mobilised resources much bigger then they do now. It would have been a great way to introduce it and show that it is not just another one of those celebrity charities that get forgotten real fast. They could have shown how effectice their help can be.

    I do love how she is still comitted to the Hubb project. Long time and strong support of a charity is something very much needed.

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    1. Apparently the paperwork to establish archwell was not correctly filled. Thus the delay. They’re just trying to sell another story...

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    2. @Anonymous 15:52, they delayd the launch a couple of weeks ago. The rejection of the paperwork came later. Or maybe we only hear about it now and they just didn't want to let that info out.

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    3. The new entity's papers was initially rejected. Not all the application was signed, it was considered to vague and there are fees that have to be paid yet.

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    4. Read an article that Archwell is to be delayed well into 2021 due to COVID and the BLM crisis. Things are becoming difficult for many charities in this environment where COVID has drastically changed revenue streams for many donators. Aside from the paperwork issues that have been identified with filing, there is an additional challenge that remains for a new charitable organization to have something very unique and different from the many other charities who are all fighting for the same monies.

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    5. The article also said that they were going to take a prominent role on the BLM movement. I can’t see why they couldn’t do it inside their Archwell project. Look, they can launch it whenever they want to but it’s suspicious that authorized information about the delay comes a couple of days before the rejection of the paperwork is public. Why twisting the story? Just say it’s delayed because bureaucracy problems.

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    6. The british tabloïds are obsessed by Meghan and Harry.

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    7. Anon 16:36, nobody said they couldn't roll their support of the BLM movement into their Archwell project. Paper work delay or bureaucracy problems, its still the same problems. Their charity needs to be less value and this could work to their advantage because it gives them time to really think about how to structure it. Also, there are claims that they have switched attorneys and that could cause yet another delay. Better to take your time and do it right than rush to get something out there that doesn't meet the needs.

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    8. Anon 15.31 the problem is the narrative. For the third time, why officially saying they’ve decided to postpone the launch when the actual story is they have been forced to do it because of paperwork problems? They’re saying it was their idea when it was not an idea but a legal problem.
      They can take all the time they need or simply never launch it and do their things without a foundation. But their statement was simply not true.

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    9. Exactily !
      I agree with your comment.
      There's no rush !
      Harry and Meghan are not fools.
      I have every confidence .They ' re going be successful.
      Good luck Harry and Meghan.

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  12. It will be interesting to see whether Archwell will be launched. Covid has changed and will continue to change our lives for a least the next few years. I just don’t see an appetite for the structure of celebrity charity we had in the past and that the abilty to generate personal wealth from these sorts of endeavours will be there. It is going to be many months before international travel resumes and we will work differently and network differently. I go to a major national conference each year. This year it is all online at a third of the cost. Just don’t see that there will be a return to the previous format. I suspect that Harry and Meghan will be rethinking their game plan. The problem for them is that they don’t have a business or career to generate the money to support the charity work. Most of their friends and associates like Serena have a primary income source. It is going to be very difficult for them and already 25% of the trial year is over. Personally I suspect Meghan now has American political ambitions and do not know where that will leave Harry. Interesting times we are living through.

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    1. Libby, you are absolutely right in your considerations. I have thinking about it too. It seems to me that the things for Harry and Meghan will be more challenging that they could expect. I just only hope that they get what they're looking for.

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    2. Nicole from France18 June 2020 at 22:56

      Libby , actually , the money mainly come from contributors , and M & H’s job is more fiding the contributors , thanks to their fame , personnality and previous projects, than giving all the money themselves . I don’t see Meghan becoming a politic and raising millions just for her to be elected , this is so immoral ! And she and husband certainly know that they are known and loved and recognized as influent person because they are a team, each one is far less effective than half the team ....

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    3. I don't think Meghan would want to become a politician because it's hard to keep your idealistic views and be supported by either of the parties, but it would not be immoral. She would do it to help make a positive change. But it would curtail many future endeavors.

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    4. Meghan is a multi-millionaire from acting, modelling, fashionista, blogger. She has multi-million dollar investment portfolios and receives royalties from her 8 films and 23 TV shows. her wealth is grossly underestimated. Plus, Harry inherited millions from his mother, great-grandmother and probably will receive inheritance from his father. Meghan is super-intelligent and knows the world of finance because she is a businesswoman. Their decision to be financially self-sufficient was not made from emotions but made from sound judgement and their collective wealth. Meghan has always been a low-maintenance person. In her TIG, she said her most extravagant item was a $3,000 watch. Janina Gavankar said that Harry and Meghan can be happy without the need for too much wealth. The fact that they can make personal and large donations is proof that they are financially sound. They can live happily from Meghan's wealth or Harry's wealth alone. Don't listen to the tabloids they are trying to brainwashed the public into thinking that they are struggling.

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    5. Funny how a positive post about a project that has taken off and is now expanding should be good news and a place to rally around.

      Alas, we can’t have that.

      Felix, the tabloids and the commenters here don’t know how much money they have or don’t have or their cost of living. People like to bring up these matters up, as in Meghan’s political ambition even if she doesn’t have any, or their charities, including non existent ones , because it’s a place to launch criticisms from. People can make up all kinds of fantastical tales as if they know things. That’s the disinformation process.

      If Harry and Meghan were successful, they’l be branded as gold diggers. If they receive security support from Charles, then they are spongers. It wouldn’t matter what they do. Even poor Archie gets the labels. He’ll never be good enough.

      The tabloids need their usual pet subjects to make angels and devils from. The world is in the toilet so the tabloids chose to distract people with gossips and lies because for some people, hate fuels them to awful action.

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    6. @Felix: fair enough. But why did they not just cut the financial ties with the BRF then? This remains their biggest weakness in terms of being taken serious. Just because your parents have this or that job doesn’t entitle you to be basically live on the tax payers purse. The wealth of the BRF didn’t come from them being gifted business people. They accumulated it through inheritance and grew it from there. That’s some privilege we are talking about here. The Dutchies that are seen as „private income” are still tied to their royal titles and don’t truly belong to them personally. That’s why the BRF and their spending is watched closely and they get a bad round in the press every couple of years. If they have multi millions they can easily afford housing and security as well as travelling and setting up what ever businesses/charities they like. They don’t carry out royal duties anymore and so there is no need for money that they didn’t earn or inherited on their own. It just looks really unfortunate to be still taking a check from PC. It hurts their reputation and in that case I cannot defend them. If they cannot fund their life with their own money they are definitely not financially sound in my opinion. Being painted as struggling is still better than being branded grifters. Their brand is hurting massively at the moment and I hope they make some smart decisions so that the trial period can still turn out very successful for them.

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    7. Ordinary people face great challenges in the pandemic. The American economy is in tatters. I very much doubt that The Sussexes are going to struggle. They are personally wealthy and don't need to work to keep a roof over their heads. I also doubt that Meghan has political ambitions, though she clearly wants to be a force for societal change. The harsh comments about them on this blog are nothing to the media attacks that would follow if she decided to pursue a political career. Right you are, Felix.

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    8. It seems like they can't please anyone. Wow -- there is only one British RF, only one heir, and he has two children. Harry cannot melt into the background. I know he would like to -- I'm sure he yearns to be a regular person whom no one recognizes. Meghan has every right to pursue a political office -- when did this become something evil or immoral?? I don't know if the drones, for example, are "merely" for photo purposes or something more dangerous. There's so much we don't know. Meghan just seems to irritate the heck out of a lot of the wrong people. :) I just enjoy whatever they do

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    9. Allison
      So true. I love Harry and Meghan .why so many people said the fake news of them?


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    10. Anon 17:46 I feel that now that Meghan has been "run out" of the UK, there are forces determined to keep her gone. And to keep her out of the RF, although of course she will always be a part of the RF.

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    11. "People can make up all kinds of fantastical tales as if they know things. That’s the disinformation process." Those 'fantastical tales' abound on both sides, i.e. "'run out' of the UK, there are are forces determined to keep her gone".....how in the world does anyone know this for a certainty. There are all levels of fans and followers of H & M and all have their own opinion. Not all differing opinions are 'haters'. My opinion aligns with Anon 21:49. While I don't begrudge them their wealth (i.e. Meghan's from her work, and Harry from his mother's inheritance), they are no longer representing the royal family officially and therefore to be taken seriously they should not accept any money from the Duchey, that's where I think the disfavor they may feel from some people in the middle comes from. That is my opinion to which I am entitled. I do not hate them, but rather hope that they are as altruistic to their endeavors as they claim, and that they are successful in their charity endeavor, and that can only be proven over time. In light of the recent news of them signing with a known company to be speakers, I have a big problem with speakers making boat loads of money while promoting charities, it feels very disingenuous. Especially when I know personally, people whose sole purpose is to make life better for others, their efforts truly selfless, and they do not profit monetarily as a result. I know of organizations that donate shoes, books, food, and they have volunteers come out to package the trailers to be shipped to countries in need. The job gets done without a speaker, without a celebrity to promote the charity, and without any monies being paid out to promote the charity. There are some truly wonderful people in this world who don't get the credit they deserve, but then that's not what they are seeking.

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    12. 100000% anon 19.29. They want to be their own RF, the RF of America.

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    13. They do not want to be the royal family of America come on. Where does this opinion even come from. The whole concept of a royal family is really not very American. We have famous families but they range from the Kennedy’s to the Kardashians. There’s no class structure with the RF on top like there Is on the UK. And old moneyed family is essentially treated the same as a low brow reality tv family. That’s all people would see M and H as if they tried to sell an image of America’s royal family. Rather I think they’re working towards being respected charitable figures with influence in the donation/causes sphere. And that’s fine.

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  13. Libby, please swiftly report your suspicion about Meghan’s political ambitions to HMG Ministry of Truth and Protocol. It’ll support all those who claimed that she’s a protocol breaker and this news, for very good reasons, needs to supersede gloomy covid and economic headlines. That’ll give people another Meghan story to focus their anger on.

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  14. I don’t know why my comment from a few days ago hasn’t appeared yet.
    Meghan and Harry are amazingly skilled at creating truly meaningful projects which give people the platform to help themselves. Together and Invictus are just 2 examples of M&H’s entrepreneurial philanthropy. I am confident M & H will find the best path forward for their family and for the people and organizations they support.
    Renee

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    1. I agree with your comment 1000%
      Harry and Meghan are strong. Good luck for them.

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  15. I thought I remembered that they were supposed to split their time between the US and the UK -- obviously they can't be there now, but it seems like they should be funded for that activity.

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  16. Look at this, Charlotte:

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-8446409/Prince-Harry-Meghan-Markle-send-letter-thanks.html

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    1. Everything about Harry and Meghan is becoming a crime.
      Harry rest one Prince.
      What's the problème with this paper ?
      They have signed Harry and Meghan.

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    2. It's not a crime, but it's about optics. If Harry and Meghan just want to be H & M, then use letterhead to that effect. When you leave a company and you are clear that you no longer want to be a part of that institution (i.e. royal), than you don't continue to use the company letterhead (i.e. no crowns). I get that the thank you is tied to Britain and that they still have royal titles, BUT their PR should advise them to come up with some other form of identifying moniker for them to use, absent crowns. The first rule to silence your critics is to take away the criticism.....note to self 'don't use crown letterhead'. Yesterday's participation of Harry and Meghan at Homeboy's Industries is what they should be doing; rolling up their sleeves and becoming involved without all the hoopla. That's what they said they wanted to do and Tuesday's efforts are what they need to continue to do. They have told the world that this is what they are about, and this type of action, the 'doing' is showing that is truly who they are. More of that and the press will move on.

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    3. Please. The word optics is just code for people’s own opinions. Everyone fancies themselves a pr or legal expert when I doubt anyone on these comment threads really is. Why shouldn’t they use their titles? They stepped down from an active role but they didn’t lose their titles and names. It’s their right to use them as they see fit, they’re really under no obligation to satisfy internet commenters concerns about “optics”

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    4. Optics is not code for people's own opinions, but its context is as it relates to public perception. Definition: "(typically in a political context) the way in which an event or course of action is perceived by the public." Whether fans of Meghan want to believe it or not, there is a perception that they are buttering their bread on both sides and that just gets pretty messy. They can certainly use their titles, but again, why should they? To be credible with their intent to become "respected charitable figures" with influence, then they need to separate out their new role. The 'perception' is that they are cashing in on their royal titles and status, which makes one wonder if that was their allure to begin with. PS I am in PR and don't think this has been handled in the best manner, especially for the money I am sure is being paid.

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  17. About the letterhead, they are still royal. They are members of the Royal Family. They are a duke and duchess. Harry is line to the throne. This is a special company because you have to be born into it to be apart of it; he can't undo his birth. Press won't move on until they are laser focused on the next generation.

    It's not what you do; it's who you are, or, here, who you are married to. Harry's cousins are paid sponsors of products/companies, getting a divorce, etc, but the press is now focused on pretending that Meghan really did do something horrible at a garden party based on a book to come out. Why isn't there a rebuttal about this from the RF?

    Watching some earlier videos of Meghan, I had forgotten how determined and well spoken she is. It must have been so hard for her to try to keep herself quiet. I'm glad she is free again.

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    1. No one here is saying they aren't worthy representatives or asking Harry to step down from the succession, although there is precedent for him to do that. Most people agree they are ideal for their public role. Harry was the most popular member of the family and Meghan has contributed her intelligent enthusiasm since they got together.
      It is all about what they do - in fact what they can or can't do, while representing the Queen and the Palace has a wariness about commercial involvement. Remember that the Wessex duo got very bad publicity when attempting to maintain their business involvements. They were continually in the headlines for that and Edward was very unpopular.
      Harry's cousins Peter and Zara have no titles because Anne chose not to accept them and they have no royal duties probably for the same reason. This does free them to accept commercial sponsorships including being paid by magazines for their wedding photographs. It is obvious that the Queen is selecting from the pool of her nearest relations for Royal duties and it is not an automatic process dependent on your place in the succession. You can get also get demoted like Andrew has. If you are outside this inner circle and have no duties you can freely accept sponsorships and go online without the close scrutiny of the Palace. Harry and Meghan could do that.
      However there are some difficult choices to make, If they are signed up with a commercial agency, will their present charities have to negotiate through that firm to arrange any future activities?

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  18. People will find any little thing to criticize this couple. I wouldn’t question their use of the monogram. They are still members of the royal family, and their personal monogram is not a logo of the royal “firm”, so to speak. Harry is still the sun of the heir to the throne and a royal duke. It seems they will go by their titles. Harry said to call him Harry, not Mr. Mountbatten Windsor, and if he were to go by a surname, I imagine it would be Harry Sussex.

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    1. Wasn't a criticism, it was an opinion about what I thought they should do. It was their objective to establish a 'branding' that would give them a separate and specific identity, even while they were within the RF. My comment was more geared to that, again, while they are still royal, with titles, they are NOT REPRESENTING the RF and that has been made clear to them and to us. I don't know what they are 'entitled' to use under the agreement, but my suggestion was that it would be good to immediately start trying to define their separate platform line that line rather than blurring it by reminding everybody they are royal. Of course,Harry will always be royal and you can't take that away, BUT it's the optics, and that's the point, its what it looks like when they do it, like they are flip flopping. The Press won't move on until they (the Sussexes) are laser focused, as right now it all gives the appearance of being very vague and convenient.

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