Prince Harry today said he was ‘hurt’ by the Queen’s decision to remove his royal patronages and honorary titles, but insisted he ‘completely respects’ her decision.
The interview was filmed before Buckingham Palace announced on February 19 that Harry and his wife Meghan Markle would lose all their remaining royal titles.
Oprah asked Harry about the decision which was ‘coming up at the end of this month’, and the Duke told her it would be that ‘they will be removing everything’.
Harry and Meghan attend the Royal Albert Hall in March 2020, which the Duke of Sussex attended as, Captain General Royal Marines and the ceremonial head of the Royal Marines
The Queen during the Service of Remembrance at the Cenotaph in London last November
Harry inspects a parade at RAF Honington in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, in July 2017 while wearing ceremonial uniform. He had been honorary air commandant of RAF Honington
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex speak to Oprah Winfrey in their bombshell interview
The chat show host asked Harry: ‘Are you hurt by that decision?’
Harry replied: ‘I am hurt. But at the same time, I completely respect my grandmother’s decision.
Meghan says she called the Queen to check in on Prince Philip
Meghan revealed she had called the Queen to check in on the Duke of Edinburgh’s health after learning he had gone to hospital.
The Duchess of Sussex said she woke up earlier than Harry one morning and saw a note from someone on their team in the UK saying Prince Philip had been admitted to hospital.
She added: ‘I just picked up the phone, and I called the Queen just to check in.’
Philip was taken to King Edward VII Hospital in London on February 16 for treatment for an infection, before having heart surgery at St Bartholomew’s Hospital last week.
He was transferred back to King Edward VII Hospital last Friday and remains there this morning.
There had been calls over the past week for Harry and Meghan to postpone their interview out of respect for Philip and his ill health.
‘I would still love for us to be able to continue to support those associations, albeit without the title or the role.
Oprah also asked the couple: ‘Could you be as satisfied now, doing this through your own organisation, Archewell?’
And Meghan replied: ‘Well, we… this is what we’re doing, right? We’re still doing it. We’re still going to always do the work.
‘But I also think it’s important for you or everyone to know this decision that was made about patronages and all of that was before anyone knew that we were sitting down with you.’
Oprah added: ‘I heard a story that you’re getting punished now. Those were being taken away because you did sit down with me.’
But Meghan said: ‘Those letters, those conversations, that was finalised before anyone even knew that we were going to sit down. So, that’s just not true.’
Last month Buckingham Palace revealed the Sussexes had lost of string of patronages, although the Queen does not plan to strip the official titles of Duke and Duchess of Sussex from them.
The pair remain His and Her Royal Highness, although they are not permitted to use those titles on a day-to-day basis as they are no longer working members of the Royal Family.
A spokesman for the Sussexes previously said there was ‘absolutely no question’ they had wanted to retain the positions they had lost, adding: ‘They do respect the decision but they always made clear they were committed to doing the roles.’
Palace sources told the Daily Mail last month that official positions were ‘simply incompatible’ with the couple’s new commercial careers in the US.
In addition to his military roles, Harry had to relinquish his presidency of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust, as well as the role of patron at the Rugby Football Union, the Rugby Football League and the London Marathon Charitable Trust.
Meghan attends a workshop with children at the National Theatre in 2018. She lost her role as patron of the organisation when Buckingham Palace announced the changes last month
Prince Harry lost his role as Captain General of the Royal Marines, His is pictured meeting 42 Commando Royal Marines at their base in Bickleigh, Devon, in February 2019
Harry, or Captain Wales as he was known in the Army, wears camouflage makes his early morning pre-flight checks in the cockpit at Camp Bastion in Afghanistan in December 2012
The Queen handed Meghan two royal patronages in 2019 – at the Royal National Theatre and the Association of Commonwealth Universities – but these were also lost.
In addition, Meghan has had to give up her role as vice-president of the Commonwealth Trust.
She did, however, retain her two private patronages at the employment charity Smart Works and animal welfare group Mayhew.
Her husband also kept private roles with African Parks, Dolen Cymru, the Henry van Straubenzee Memorial Fund, MapAction, Rhino Conservation Botswana, Sentebale, WellChild and the Invictus Games for wounded soldiers.