Harry and Meghan 'plot UK return' amid 'vacuum' caused by Charles' illness and William stepping back to care for Kate

7 March 2024, 20:29

Harry and Meghan could be plotting a UK return
Harry and Meghan could be plotting a UK return. Picture: Alamy

By Kit Heren

Harry and Meghan could be set to spend more time in the UK amid King Charles' illness and William taking time to look after Kate as she recovers from surgery.

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Meghan is said to be looking for a UK-based PR adviser to gain better publicity for herself and Archewell, the foundation she runs with Harry.

The Sussexes left the UK in 2020 to live in the US, and now reside in California. They returned for the Queen's Platinum Jubilee and her funeral, both in 2022.

But they are said to want to spend more time in the UK in 2024, in part because of the health of other members of the royal family.

Charles was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year, and Kate had abdominal surgery. Prince William is taking time out to help look after his wife as she recovers.

Read more: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle should be stripped of their royal titles, says Kate's uncle

Read more: Harry and Meghan unveil new website claiming Sussexes are 'shaping the future through business and philanthropy’

Harry and Meghan in February
Harry and Meghan in February. Picture: Alamy

One insider told Mail Online: "The Royal Family is looking short-staffed and quite elderly.

"The Sussexes have a popularity problem and can see there is an opportunity to step in to fill a vacuum over here with their own work.

"There is also growing noise stateside that Harry would like to carry out duties on behalf of his father again."

But securing PR consultants may not be easier for the Sussexes, with rumours that they do not always listen to advice.

One publicist said: "This is a s*** sandwich that many senior PR people will not be willing to eat. Many will turn it down.

"Representing the couple in the UK is a tantalising thought but they don't have a reputation for listening to advice. What would be the point?"

King Charles was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year
King Charles was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year. Picture: Getty

The royal source added: "American stars also often expect their PRs to spend their time shouting at people - that's not going to appeal either in the UK where things are done rather differently".

Despite legal battles with some elements of the British press, Meghan is said still to like the UK.

She opened the Mayhew animal charity in north-west London earlier this year, appearing by videolink.

Harry is also set to return to London in person in May for a church service at St Paul's cathedral to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the Invictus Games.

King amused by well-wisher’s card showing disgruntled cone-wearing dog

Brand expert Nick Ede said: "I think that the UK is still a very important place for Meghan to have a presence and to have strong positive PR. She genuinely likes the UK and British people.

"I would think that to bring a positive spin on her good work and her philanthropic side is very important to her - even recently with the work she does with the Mayhew she has shown her commitment to the causes she cares about".

Mr Ede added: "If she is going to start to promote lifestyle brands in the UK, Meghan knows that the consumer audience although smaller than North America are very style savvy and they love her looks and fashion sensibility".

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