Meghan breaks silence following criticism over new Sussex website in rare statement

14 February 2024, 14:56

Meghan has issued a statement following the launch of the new website.
Meghan has issued a statement following the launch of the new website. Picture: Alamy/Sussex.com

By Jenny Medlicott

The Duchess of Sussex has issued a statement following backlash over her and Prince Harry’s new website.

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Harry and Meghan quietly launched a new website Sussex.com to replace their former Archewell site on Monday evening.

But the rebrand elicited backlash, as critics pointed out that the pair had used their royal titles on the site despite making no explicit mention of the monarchy - with some saying the site was an attempt to be ‘more Royal’.

The website was designed by Article, a Canadian digital agency the Duchess has used in the past to set up previous sites The Tig and Archewell.

Now Meghan has issued a statement over the new site, as she said in a statement on Wednesday: “There is a reason I have worked with Ryan and the talented team at Article for a decade: their attention to detail, their creativity and care, and the thoughtful approach to design as well as to the user experience.

“They're not just designers; they are collaborators who elevate your ideas into visual identities. They're a very special company. Plus they're Canadian, so I'm a fan.”

Royal insiders criticised the new website earlier this week, telling the MailOnline it created a “blurred line between the past and the present” after the couple was told to drop their Sussex titles in 2020 after stepping down as working royals.

Read more: Meghan lands new podcast after parting ways with Spotify

Read more: Harry and Meghan's new Sussex website that doesn't mention monarchy ‘would have infuriated the Queen’, critics say

Sussex.com website
Sussex.com website. Picture: Sussex.com

Other than the use of the pair's titles, the website makes no mention of the monarchy, even when discussing their respective professional experiences.

On Prince Harry's page, for example, he is described as a "humanitarian and mental health advocate" and mentions his roles at Sentabale, Wellchild and Betterup.

It also mentions that he served in the British Armed Forces and set up the Invictus Games, but does not reference his time as a working royal.

Meghan's page, meanwhile, describes her as a "feminist and champion of human rights" and mentions her charity work and experience guest editing Vogue magazine.

But again, like her husband, there is no mention of her time as a working royal.

Prince Harry, Meghan Markle on stage for Global Citizen Concert 2021, Central Park, New York, NY September 25, 2021
Prince Harry, Meghan Markle on stage for Global Citizen Concert 2021, Central Park, New York, NY September 25, 2021. Picture: Alamy

Harry and Meghan's previous website included the phrase 'serving the monarchy', though this does not appear on the new website.

Critics have gone as far as to say that the website would have 'infuriated the Queen'.

But those close to the couple hit back at the criticism earlier this week.

"Sussex is their surname and family name. That is a fact," a source said.

Sussex.com website
Sussex.com website. Picture: Sussex.com

The Sussexes launched the new website ahead of the Royal pair's trip to Canada to kick off the Invictus Games Vancouver Whistler 2025 one-year countdown.

The website uses the couple's Duke and Duchess of Sussex royal titles and coat of arms amid a minimalist design.

Meghan, 42, and Harry, 39, are splashed across the entire home page in a photograph from the Invictus Games closing ceremony in Germany in 2023.

"The Office of Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex is shaping the future through business and philanthropy," the website claims.

It is thought the Royal couple will continue to update fans of their professional ventures and private life through the website, replacing the Archewell website, though the foundation remains.

It comes after the Duchess announced her new podcast deal with Lemonada Media on Monday.

In a statement on the pair's new website, the Duchess said she was “overjoyed to be joining the Lemonada family”.

“I’m proud to now be able to share that I am joining the brilliant team at Lemonada to continue my love of podcasting," she said.

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