Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stepped down as working royals in 2020, a decision which rocked the Firm and prompted a heartbreaking response from the late Queen.

Prince Harry leaves Balmoral after death of Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth was reportedly left “very hurt” and “exhausted” by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s decision to quit as working members of the Royal Family, it’s been claimed.

Her feelings were summed up with a simple yet devastating eight-word response as she told a royal insider: “I don’t want to think about it anymore.”

In the forthcoming book ‘The New Royals: Queen Elizabeth’s Legacy and the Future of the Crown’, a source close to the Firm gave an insight into the late Queen’s “turmoil” over events at the time.

An extract of the book was published in Vanity Fair, in which the insider said: ” She was very hurt and told me, ‘I don’t know, I don’t care, and I don’t want to think about it anymore’.”

The book was written by royal expert and correspondent Katie Nicholl, who also claimed that the late Queen was upset that she did not get to spend more time with Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet.


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Prince Harry kisses Queen Elizabeth on the cheek.

Prince Harry was beloved by his grandmother Queen Elizabeth. (Image: Getty)

Ms Nicholl wrote of Her Late Majesty’s disappointment that Harry and Meghan did not bring their children to Balmoral in August for a sleepover.

The author noted: “It was a source of sadness to the Queen that she got to see so little of Archie and Lilibet and that Harry and Meghan were not able to join her for a weekend at Balmoral in August when the Queen used to host a ‘sleepover’ for all of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.”

The Queen only met Lilibet once, when the Sussexes travelled over to the UK in June 2022 for the Platinum Jubilee, with her passing away at Balmoral just three months later.

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Queen, Meghan and Harry on Palace balcony

Queen Elizabeth gave a heartbreaking response to Prince Harry’s decision to quit the Firm. (Image: Getty)

King Charles is now said to be keen to patch things up with Harry and Meghan, especially so that he can build a relationship with his youngest grandchildren.

A source close to the royals told The Independent: “He is hurt and disappointed but he has always said his love for Harry is unconditional.”

Harry flew over to the UK for just one day to see his father back in February when he learned that Charles had been diagnosed with cancer, sparking hopes that a reconciliation could be on the cards.

However, when Harry last travelled to the UK in May for the Invictus Games 10th-anniversary service in London, he did not manage to see any of his family on the royal side.

There was a clash of schedules, with King Charles and other senior royals attending a garden party at Buckingham Palace on the same day.

But it later emerged that Hary had been invited to stay at a royal residence, but turned it down in favour of a hotel due to apparent security concerns.