Prince Harry’s page on the royal family’s website has been updated to remove the title “His Royal Highness”.
Until recently, the Duke of Sussex was still being referred to by his HRH title in his bio on the royal family’s website. However, the current version of the page does not include any HRH references, instead referring to the royal either as the duke or the Duke of Sussex.
In June, a section of the site that detailed Harry’s work to raise awareness around HIV/AIDS in 2016, previously read: “In 2016, His Royal Highness underwent a public HIV test at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital to raise awareness and promote how easy it is to get tested, as part of his on-going efforts to eradicate stigmas associated with HIV/AIDS.”
At present, the site reads: “In 2016, The Duke underwent a public HIV test at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospital to raise awareness...”
The Independent has contacted Buckingham Palace and representatives of the Sussexes for comment.
In a statement to Express, the Palace said: “The Royal Family website contains over five thousand pages of information about the life and work of the Royal Family. Following the death of Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, content has been revisited and updated periodically. Some content may be out of date until this process is complete.”
The update to the royal family’s website comes after Prince Harry and Meghan announced their intention to step back from their roles as senior royals in January 2020. Shortly after their decision, it was announced by Buckingham Palace that the Sussexes would no longer use their HRH titles.
The official statement, issued by the Palace on 18 January 2020, read: “The Sussexes will not use their HRH titles as they are no longer working members of the royal family.”
When the couple announced their decision to step back from their royal roles, the Duke of Sussex expressed his desire to be called “Just Harry”.
Although Harry no longer uses his HRH title, he has retained his place as fifth in the line of succession to the throne. Harry currently sits behind his brother Prince William and the Prince and Princess of Wales’ three children: Prince George, 10, Princess Charlotte, eight, and Prince Louis, five. Behind Harry in line for the throne are his and Meghan’s children: Prince Archie, four, and Princess Lilibet, two.
Although the pair chose to step away from royal life and relocate to California, their two children had title changes once King Charles ascended the throne. Previously on the royal website, visitors would see “Master Archie Mountbatten-Windsor” and “Miss Lilibet Mountbatten-Windsor”. However, the references were updated in March to reflect their titles as prince and princess.
The titles were delayed due to a precedent originally set by King George V when he issued a Letters Patent in 1917. This restricts the titles of prince and princess to only male line grandchildren of the sovereign. Because the two were born during Queen Elizabeth’s reign, they were not given the titles. This changed once King Charles ascended the throne and they then became the grandchildren of the current monarch.
“The children’s titles have been a birthright since their grandfather became monarch,” a spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex told People at the time. “This matter has been settled for some time in alignment with Buckingham Palace.”
The website was also recently altered to reflect the current titles of King Charles III and Queen Camilla. Prior to the change, the couple was referred to as the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, the titles they held prior to the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, according to the outlet. Similarly, references to Prince William and Kate as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been updated to reflect the couple’s titles as the Prince and Princess of Wales.
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