Queen Elizabeth II has reportedly already decided who will assume the patronage of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex

Queen Elizabeth II has reportedly already decided who will assume the patronage of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex

The couple, who moved to California in 2020, confirmed last week that they will not return as working members of the British royal family as their roles now have to be filled.

A source told the Daily Mirror newspaper: “When the writing was on the wall and it was clear that the Duke and Duchess had no intention of returning to the group and being part of the team, the Queen signed up for them long ago decidedly preferred candidates for the roles they left. “

According to reports, Princess Anne, 70, is set to replace Prince Harry, 36, as Captain General of the Royal Marines, while Prince Edward, 56, could succeed Duchess Meghan, 39, as Patroness of the National Theater.

Meanwhile, it is believed that Harry’s patronage as honorary air commander of RAF Honington – which he has held since 2008 – is likely to go to his brother Prince William.

And his position as Commodore-in-Chief Small Ships and Diving has to be filled while he has also lost his patronage for the England Rugby Union and the Rugby Football League.

According to the publication, league bosses are hoping 38-year-old William will become the face of the 2021 Rugby League World Cup.

It is said that Sophie Wessex could replace Meghan as the patroness of the Association of Commonwealth Universities.

And the couple have also vacated their roles as President and Vice President – Harry and Meghan – of the Queen’s Commonwealth Trust.

Last week Buckingham Palace confirmed news that the couple, who have 21-month-old son Archie and are expecting their second child together, will not be returning as working members of the royal family.

A palace spokesman said: “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed to Her Majesty the Queen that they will not return as working members of the royal family.

“Following discussions with the Duke, the Queen confirmed in writing that it is not possible to continue the responsibilities and duties associated with a life in the public service by moving away from the work of the royal family.

“The honorary military appointments and royal patrons of the Duke and Duchess will therefore be returned to Her Majesty before being redistributed among the working members of the royal family.

“While everyone is saddened by their decision, the Duke and Duchess remain very beloved family members.”

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