Are the royals ready to reconcile with Harry and Meghan? Lilibet's christening could hold the key

·5-min read
A new clip of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, who�s pregnant with their second child after Archie, during their bombshell tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey after quitting their Royal Job, shows Meghan, Duchess of Sussex finally feeling free and ready to talk about being blocked from having her voice by royal aides. The clip aired on CBS This Morning ahead of premiere on US network on Sunday night. (Photo by DPPA/Sipa USA)
Baby Archie was christened in Windsor - will his little sister have the same experience? (Reuters/DPPA/Sipa USA)

The royal rift between Harry and Meghan and the rest of the family may be about to mend.

According to insiders, the couple are planning a return to Britain for the christening of baby Lilibet, their daughter who was born in June this year, and named after the Queen's childhood mispronunciation of 'Elizabeth'. 

If it happens, this would be the first time Meghan comes face to face with her in-laws since the infamous Oprah interview in March. Harry visited for Philip's funeral, where Kate tactfully walked between the Prince and his older brother, and was back again for the unveiling of the Princess Diana statue in early July, but after some awkward-looking small talk and a frosty stroll with William, he was back on Californian soil before the champagne glasses were packed away.

During May, Harry told podcast host Dax Shepard why he had wanted out of The Firm: 

"It’s the job right? Grin and bear it. Get on with it. I was in my early twenties and I was thinking, I don’t want this job, I don’t want to be here. I don’t want to be doing this."

He added, "Look what it did to my mum. How am I ever going to settle down and have a wife and family when I know it’s going to happen again?...I've seen behind the curtain, I’ve seen the business model and seen how this whole thing works and I don't want to be part of this."

A new clip of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, who�s pregnant with their second child after Archie, during their bombshell tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey after quitting their Royal Job, shows Meghan, Duchess of Sussex finally feeling free and ready to talk about being blocked from having her voice by royal aides. The clip aired on CBS This Morning ahead of premiere on US network on Sunday night. (Photo by DPPA/Sipa USA)
Can Harry and Meghan move on and bury hatchets - or is it too late? (Reuters/photo by DPPA/Sipa USA)

He enthused about their new life in chic Montecito - "Living here now, I can actually lift my head. I feel different, my shoulders have dropped, so have (Meghan's)." 

He went on to analyse the cycle of royal suffering.

“Certainly, when it comes to parenting, if I've experienced some form of pain or suffering because of the pain or suffering that perhaps my father or my parents had suffered, I'm going to make sure I break that cycle so that I don't pass it on,” he said.

Read more: Will The Queen ever cuddle her namesake great-granddaughter? At last, Harry and Meghan 'want to meet'

Afterwards, one inside source told Us Weekly, “The Queen is unimpressed with Harry’s latest interview and found it hurtful," and suggested that Prince Charles and Prince William were “livid.”

There were also claims of 'bullying' from royal staffers, who accused Meghan of making unreasonable demands and hurling abuse, while the Sussexes claimed that Meghan had been suicidal during her time in 'The Firm', due to press intrusion and a lack of support from the wider family.

Throughout, however, Harry has spoken only of his respect and admiration for the Queen herself, particularly in the aftermath of Prince Philip's death in the spring.

Britain's Queen Elizaberth II smiles as Prince Harry pulls a face as they watch Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall leave St. George's Chapel.  Britain's Queen Elizaberth II smiles as Prince Harry pulls a face as they watch Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall leave St. George's Chapel in Windsor Castle April 9, 2005. Prince Charles finally married the love of his life on Saturday, in a simple town hall ceremony contrasting sharply with his spectacular cathedral wedding to the ill-fated Princess Diana. REUTERS/Alastair Grant/AP WPA PICTURES OF THE YEAR 2005
The Queen and Harry in happier times, back in 2005. (REUTERS/Alastair Grant)

Lilibet is the Queen's 11th great-grandchild, and there was confusion after her birth over whether the Monarch had specifically given permission or her blessing for the use of the nickname. According to BBC's royal correspondent Jonny Dymond, she 'had not been consulted about the name', though other sources claimed that she had.

Yet despite the collision of stiff upper lips and very loose lips, The Sussexes reportedly still hope for a meeting with the Queen and a British christening for Lilibet. Rumours suggest they would like it to take place at St. George's Chapel in Windsor, attended by the Queen, who missed their son Archie's baptism in 2019 due to 'a prior engagement.'

Watch: Baby Archie christening: Royal family holds private Windsor castle ceremony

Reconciling fully with his widowed grandmother, now 95, must be high on Harry's list of priorities as the two were always close prior to the 'step back' and the Prince's suggestion of racism amongst 'senior royals.' 

The Queen's measured response was that 'recollections may vary', and this week, it was revealed that she supports the Black Lives Matter movement. 

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 10: An arrangement of UK daily newspapers shows front page headlines reporting Queen Elizabeth's respond over the interview given by the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle and her husband Britain's Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, to media mogul Oprah Winfrey about their experiences with Buckingham Palace, in London, United Kingdom on March 10, 2021. (Photo by Hasan Esen/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
Headlines after the bombshell Oprah interview aired in the UK. (Photo by Hasan Esen/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Read more: Lilibet has now *officially* been recognised as eighth in line to the throne

'The Queen has not yet met Lilibet, and though this may be the couples' chief reason for a British visit, it may also come down to practicality - at least two of Lilibet's godparents, Tiggy Pettifer (formerly Legge-Bourke), William and Harry's former nanny, and Mark Dyer, the Prince of Wales' former equerry and friend - are UK-based and holding the christening at Windsor, where Harry and Meghan married, and where Archie was baptised, would also be in line with tradition and allow other senior royals to attend.

Whether the Queen will give her permission, however, remains to be seen. If not, it could be a Californian christening for Lilibet, and a much longer wait for the eighth in line to the throne to meet her royal relations. 

Watch: Princes William and Harry seen walking, talking together for first time since Oprah interview

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