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  1. ITV Report

Could Megxit make Australia become a republic?

It was in Australia that Harry and Meghan first embarked on their first overseas tour.

Australia chosen as the destination to start a 16-day trip that introduced the couple to the Commonwealth. Those enjoying the summer surf today welcomed news of their Royal exit.

"I quite understand why they're doing what they're doing, but I just think they went about it the wrong way," voiced one Australian.

Another said: "I'm not really a big follower of the Royal family but I did catch this story and thought 'good on them'."

Australia was chosen as Harry and Meghan's first destination during their first overseas tour. Credit: PA

They came to Bondi to visit a mental health charity - it has trebled in size thanks to this support from the Sussexes.

"When we sat down there in that circle it really felt like their guard just dropped for a moment," said Charlotte Connell of OneWave, who was among those who met the Duke and Duchess.

"I think, kudos to them, well done for putting your family first and maybe taking a bit of a step back from those Royal duties to look after your own mental health and look after your family."

The couple's decision to rescind their Royal roles has sparked a fresh debate in Australia on whether to retain the monarchy.

In a 1999 referendum, 55% voted to keep the Queen.

Charlotte Connell of OneWave met the Duke and Duchess during their visit to Bondi Beach. Credit: ITV News

In the 20 years since that vote, opinions here have shifted and the polls now suggest that a majority of Australians are in favour of independence. So if this decision by Harry and Meghan were to prompt another poll on the monarchy, Republicans here are optimistic that this time, they would win.

Despite these Commonwealth charm offences, Republican sentiment here appears to have grown.

Views have changed in Australia since the 1999 referendum to keep the Queen. Credit: ITV News

Michelle Wood told ITV News' Debi Edward: "We've been hearing from Australians for a long time that the Australian Republican Movement that they want another vote, that we want a chance to have a go, that many people didn't mean - just like Brexit - to vote 'no' the first time around and they'd be ready and willing to give it another go and vote yes this time."

If last year was bumpy for the Royal Family, then 2020 looks set to be an even tougher ride.