The Queen has released a statement regarding the future of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, following their announcement that the couple wish to step back from their jobs as full-time royals.
The monarch, met with senior aides and members of the royal family—including Prince Charles, William and Harry—at Sandringham today to discuss the complexities surrounding the transition. The Duchess of Sussex is currently in Canada with their son Archie and is reported to have joined the conversation via phone.
The Queen admitted that while she would have preferred them to have remained full-time working royals, she is “entirely supportive” of the move.
“Today my family had very constructive discussions on the future of my grandson and his family,” read the statement shared via The Royal Family‘s social media channels.
“My family and I are entirely supportive of Harry and Meghan’s desire to create a new life as a young family. Although we would have preferred them to remain full-time working members of the Royal Family, we respect and understand their wish to live a more independent life as a family while remaining a valued part of my family.”
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The Queen reiterated Harry and Meghan’s desire not “to be reliant on public funds in their new lives”. The couple’s dependence on taxpayer money has been used as a criticism against their perceived lavish spending.
“It has therefore been agreed that there will be a period of transition in which the Sussexes will spend time in Canada and the UK,” said the Queen.
“These are complex matters for my family to resolve, and there is some more work to be done, but I have asked for final decisions to be reached in the coming days.”
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Over the weekend Prince William expressed his sadness at his brother’s decision to take a step back, but also declared his hope that they can find a way to work together as a “team”.
As reported by the Sunday Times, the Duke of Cambridge told a friend that he wants to find a way to “support them”.
“I’ve put my arm around my brother all our lives and I can’t do that any more; we’re separate entities,” he said. “I’m sad about that. All we can do, and all I can do, is try and support them and hope that the time comes when we’re all singing from the same page. I want everyone to play on the same team.”
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This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR UK.