Just because Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have left the royal family doesn’t mean the couple won’t communicate with them. In honor of Queen Elizabeth II’s 94th birthday, the couple conducted a video chat with her, and even included their baby Archie in the festivities, according to People. Additional details about the call will not be made available to the public, as the conversation is a family affair that does not relate to official royal business.
The queen is letting much of the usual fanfare around her birthday be stripped away this year because of the coronavirus. She canceled the gun salutes that usually occur to mark her birthday, which takes place at royal parks throughout parts of London. She’s currently at Windsor Castle, where she’s been isolating for over a month since quarantines began going into effect in much of the United Kingdom. The time difference between Windsor Castle and Los Angeles, where Harry and Meghan are currently based, is eight hours.
Although Archie isn’t even a year old, this reportedly isn’t his first time on a video chat. E! reported that their son likes to play with other kids over FaceTime while in quarantine.
While no royal family members were able to get together to celebrate the holiday in person, Harry and Meghan weren’t the only current or former royals to salute the queen in honor of her birthday. Prince William and Kate Middleton posted a photo of themselves with Queen Elizabeth II at the Chelsea Flower Show last May, in order to wish William’s grandmother a happy birthday. Meanwhile, Prince Charles chose to celebrate the occasion with a series of photos showcasing his relationship with his mother over the years.
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Today The Duke of Sussex attended a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace alongside Her Majesty The Queen and other Members of The Royal Family. The Queen hosts Garden Parties as a means of recognizing guests for the good work they are doing in their communities, a tradition steeped in history and dating back to the 1860s during Queen Victoria’s reign. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex attended their first official Garden Party as a couple last May at Buckingham Palace just days after their wedding, in celebration of The Prince of Wales’ charity work, patronages and military affiliations. Today, The Duke of Sussex met with several guests including those that he and The Duchess extended a personal invitation to based on their extensive work in the community. His Royal Highness met with a representative of @africanparksnetwork (of which he is President), a mental health consultant for @weareinvictusgames and countless others who are leading by example with high impact cause driven work. The Duke also greeted several representatives of The Duchess’ patronages on her behalf, as she is on maternity leave and was unable to attend. These include members from @themayhew @thenationaltheatre and @smartworkscharity as well as The Association of Commonwealth Universities. Amongst the 8,000 people attending today were Members of the Armed Services, Ambassadors as well as those who have made a positive impact through the arts, charity work and volunteering. Thank you to volunteers, staff and all of those who dedicate their time and energy to working towards the collective good. We appreciate all that you do ????
Harry and Meghan haven’t seen the queen since their return to the U.K. for their final round of royal engagements in early March. They officially left the royal family at the end of March and made the move from Canada to Los Angeles just a few days before that.
During their last visit to the U.K. to complete their final round of duties — just before the worst of the coronavirus crisis began to come into view — the queen invited them to church along with the rest of the royal family.
“It was a really sweet gesture that the Queen asked them to church. It’s telling in the sense that these two are still her family. And as a family, they all love each other,” a source told People.