Prince Harry gives behind the scenes glimpse at his 'final' senior royal engagement

17 January 2020, 00:15

The Duke of Sussex has given a tantalising glimpse of what is expected to be his final engagement as a senior member of the royal family.

The post to his Instagram story was backed by a Stone Roses hit with the lyrics: "I'd like to leave the country for a month of Sundays', potentially giving the biggest hint yet that he will be stepping down and moving to Canada with Meghan and their young son Archie.

In the clip, Prince Harry can be seen laughing and joking at his first Royal engagement since "Megxit".

The behind-the-scenes begins with a view of Harry walking into a room filled with reporters.

He is also shown larking around with the crowd and with guests, including comedian Adam Hills.

The images were posted to the SussexRoyal instagram account
The images were posted to the SussexRoyal instagram account. Picture: Sussex Royal Instagram

The Duke spent Friday at Buckingham Palace, to host the Rugby League World Cup 2021 draw.

He watched local children from St Vincent de Paul Catholic primary school play rugby on the palace lawn before being introduced to ambassadors for the global tournament.

The Instagram hint comes after the shock announcement last week that he and his wife, Meghan Markle, will be "stepping back as senior royals".

It is his first appearance at an official event since the couple plunged the monarchy into crisis by announcing they want to become financially independent and live part of the year in Canada.

However, it has been announced that Harry will remain in the UK next week, quashing rumours that he was preparing to fly to Canada to join his wife and their son Archie.

Harry and Meghan made their announcement last week
Harry and Meghan made their announcement last week. Picture: PA

The Queen held crisis talks at Sandringham between senior royals including the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince Harry last week.

Meghan did not join the royal summit at Sandringham with the Queen and senior royals by phone earlier, when Prince Harry put forward the couple's views for their future.

A Buckingham Palace spokesperson said: "In the end, the Sussexes decided that it wasn't necessary for the duchess to join."

Reports claim the duke is remaining in the UK to hold further discussions about his future role in the royal family, but Buckingham Palace has released no further updates since the Queen's personal statement on Monday.

A royal source said: "The duke has some meetings here early next week."

The duke and duchess have also dropped their claim to be "internationally protected people" from their website, indicating there may be an issue over their round-the-clock security funded by the taxpayer.

The classification entitled them to the same level of protection offered to heads of state, but the Times reported it was removed from sussexroyal.com a day after the new site was launched last week.

Prince Harry announced the 2022 Invictus Games
Prince Harry announced the 2022 Invictus Games. Picture: Sussex Royal Instagram
Meghan Markle visited the Downtown Eastside Women's Centre.
Meghan Markle visited the Downtown Eastside Women's Centre. Picture: Downtown Eastside Women's Centre

The official engagement on Thursday saw him host the Rugby League World Cup draws for the men's, women's and wheelchair tournaments.

The draws will be streamed live across the royal family and the tournaments' Twitter and Facebook channels.

The world cup tournament runs from October 23 to November 27 2021 in 17 cities across England, with 16 men's, eight women's and eight wheelchair teams from 21 nations taking part.

Prince Harry appears to be attempting to carry on as normal, launching the next leg of his Invictus Games, for wounded and injured service personnel and veterans, with an Instagram video on Wednesday evening.

The event will be held in Dusseldorf, Germany, in 2022.

In the footage posted on the official sussexroyal account, Harry said: "I hope everyone in Germany is ready for what will be an incredible week of sport!

"I have no doubt that the German public will get right behind these Games and that every single competitor can expect a warm welcome and an amazing atmosphere."

Meghan, who flew back to Canada before senior royals met at Sandringham to discuss the couple's future on Monday, has been photographed in the province of British Columbia visiting the Downtown Eastside Women's Centre in Vancouver.

She discussed "issues affecting women in the community", according to a photograph posted on Facebook by the shelter.

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