Kensington Palace has confirmed Suits actress Meghan Markle will spend Christmas at Sandringham with the Queen and other senior members of the Royal Family. Meghan Markle and Prince Harry announced their whirlwind engagement last month and recently confirmed the royal wedding will be on May 19, 2018. According to Kensington Palace, the couple is expected to attend the traditional Christmas Day church service on the Queen’s private estate in Norfolk where they will also spend Christmas Day. Spending the holidays with your future in-laws may seem like nothing out of the ordinary for a typical engaged couple, but among the royals, it’s a complete veer from tradition.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are breaking the rules in more ways than one. First, the newly engaged couple was all about holding hands and showing affection unlike the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge did pre-marriage. Now they’ll visit the Queen for Christmas even though it’s against traditional protocol for the fiance to spend time with the Royal Family before marriage; Meghan will be the first. Even Prince William and Kate Middleton spent Christmas apart due to this technicality, even though they were engaged that November.
Myka Meier, the founder, and director of Beaumont Etiquette told People magazine that a statement is being made with these breaks in tradition. “To show PDA as a representative of the British monarchy at such an official event says everything! Rarely in the past have we seen unmarried royals showing PDA with significant others at a public event.” There’s no official rule restricting PDA, however, it’s well-known that royals usually refrain from showing such affection while on official engagements. Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, on the other hand, have felt no pressure to hold back from showing their affection for one another. Now Meghan is changing the rules on meeting her future royal family, too. Harry shared in their engagement interview that not only did Ms. Markle meet Queen Elizabeth on a few occasions, but his new fiance also managed to win over his grandmother’s beloved canines, too: “The corgis took to her straight away. I’ve spent the last 33 years being barked at — this one walks in, absolutely nothing.”
It looks like Meghan has won over the Queen already. The actress has been an exception to quite a few traditions among the royal family and they don’t appear to be bothered by it. A family friend told People magazine that the Queen has a soft spot for Harry, and therefore, for Markle: “If Harry asks for something, the Queen would say yes as she adores him.”
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