Buckingham Palace issued a statement on Friday, 19 February 2021 following a decision after conversations between the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and Members of the Royal Family.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed to Her Majesty The Queen that they will not be returning as working members of The Royal Family.  

Following conversations with The Duke, The Queen has written confirming that in stepping away from the work of The Royal Family it is not possible to continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service. The honorary military appointments and Royal patronages held by The Duke and Duchess will therefore be returned to Her Majesty, before being redistributed among working members of The Royal Family.
 
While all are saddened by their decision, The Duke and Duchess remain much-loved members of the family.

Buckingham Palace, 19 February 2021

As a result, the Duke and Duchess have been stripped of the following honorary military appointments and Royal patronages:

  • The Royal Marines
  • RAF Honington
  • Royal Navy Small Ships and Diving
  • The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust
  • The Rugby Football Union
  • The Rugby Football League
  • The Royal National Theatre
  • The Association of Commonwealth Universities

Queen Elizabeth will distribute these honorary military appointments and royal patronages to ‘working members of the Royal Family.’

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex stepped away as working members of the Royal Family in 2020, with a 12-month review, and have since moved to Santa Barbara in California.

However, according to reports, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have released their own statement:

As evidenced by their work over the past year, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex remain committed to their duty and service to the UK and around the world, and have offered their continued support to the organisations they have represented.

We can all live a life of service. Service is universal.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, 19 February 2021

However, Queen Elizabeth has said their decision to step away from the Royal Family, it is ‘not possible to continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service.’

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