Andrew, Harry and Meghan won't join Queen's Jubilee balcony appearance as more details revealed
ITV News Correspondent John Ray reports on why only certain royals will gather on the balcony for the traditional appearance at the start of the Queen's jubilee celebrations
Prince Andrew, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will not appear on the Platinum Jubilee Trooping the Colour balcony appearance, a Buckingham Palace source has said.
The revelation came as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex confirmed they will be attending the celebrations in June.
It will be the first time the couple have brought their family to the UK since leaving for the US, and the first time their youngest, Lilibet, will meet her great-grandmother who she was named after.
A spokeswoman for Harry and Meghan said: “Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are excited and honoured to attend The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations this June with their children.”
The details were revealed as further plans were unveiled around celebrations to mark the Queen's 70 years on the throne, with the monarch "looking forward" to the weekend.
Further plans for the highly anticipated celebrations have been revealed in a series of animated images and video
On June 2, Trooping the Colour – the sovereign’s official birthday parade – will kick start the four days of Jubilee festivities, with 18 members of the royal family set to gather on the famous frontage.
The Queen’s decision to only include royals carrying out official public duties was taken “after careful consideration”, the source said.
Joining the Queen on the balcony for the Platinum Jubilee Trooping will be the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, the Princess Royal, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, the Duke of Kent, Princess Alexandra, and Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, ITV New understands.
Also set to appear for the historic occasion will be Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis and the Wessexes’ children Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn.
The head of state has made an exception for Anne’s husband Vice Admiral Sir Tim, who is not a working royal, and her two youngest grandchildren Lady Louise and James, and her Cambridge great-grandchildren George, Charlotte and Louis.
The Palace spokesman said: “In addition the Cambridge and Wessex children are also expected to appear as is Sir Tim Laurence, who the Queen is happy to attend as a frequent attendee and support for the Princess Royal on official engagements.”
A source said Her Majesty is "looking forward" to the weekend and plans to take part in the celebrations.
But her attendance will not be confirmed until much nearer to the time or even on the day itself, they added.
With less than a month to go, the Palace released further details, including how Jubilee arrangements have been tailored for the 96-year-old monarch's "comfort".
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There will be no ceremonial journey to the service of thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral on Friday June 3, and the Queen, who is facing mobility issues, will use a different entrance rather than scaling the steep steps.
The 18th century Gold State Coach will appear on the streets of London for the first time in 20 years when it leads the Jubilee Pageant procession on Sunday June 5.
Archive film footage of Elizabeth II on her Coronation Day will be shown on the remodelled on the windows to evoke the image of the young monarch travelling the coach.
The decision to limit the balcony appearance to working royals comes after Prince Andrew stepped down from public duties in 2019 and just weeks ago paid millions out of court to settle a civil sexual assault case.
Last week he was stripped of the Freedom of the City of York following a vote by councillors.
He was stripped of his honorary military titles and forced to no longer use his HRH style, but he played a key role in March when he escorted his mother to the Duke of Edinburgh’s thanksgiving service.
Harry and Meghan quit as senior working royals in March 2020 and the following year made racism accusations against an unnamed senior member of the Family during a bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey.
A Palace source said: “Other family members will be invited to events. We’ve always made that clear and they are likely to be public events.”
A source reiterated past remarks about Harry and Meghan: “They are much loved members of the family and they would be invited to family events.”
Much has changed since the Queen's Diamond Jubilee 10 years ago when just six members of the royal family appeared – the Queen, Charles, Camilla, William, Kate and Harry – on the Palace balcony as part of a new slimmed down monarchy – with Edward, Sophie, Anne and Andrew missing out.