Great Britain

Queen Elizabeth II’s surprising omission raised ‘suspicion’ in Royal Family

For her yearly speech last Christmas, the Queen sat at her desk and addressed the nation about the highlights of the year. On her desk there were portraits of the Cambridges, Charles and Camilla, Prince Philip and her father, George VI.

However, the Duke and the Duchess of Sussex and their son, Archie, were nowhere to be seen.

Royal fans speculated about the major omission, considering the Sussexes’ photograph was included with the other portraits the previous year.

But as well as the photo, the Queen made no mention of the couple, which only sparked more debate.

Speaking to the Mirror's royal podcast, Pod Save the Queen, royal author Robert Lacey said the Queen's omission raised "suspicion" within the Royal Family.

Queen Elizabeth II

Queen Elizabeth II’s surprising omission raised ‘suspicion’ in Royal Family (Image: Getty)

He said: "The picture of the Sussexes that had been on the royal desk the year before had vanished.

"There was no mention in the Queen's broadcast of the word 'Sussex'.

"She did mention and welcome her eighth great grandchild, but she didn't say the word Archie.

"Clearly there was suspicion building up inside the family and inside the palaces about what this project that Sussex Royal, that Harry and Meghan were launching, was all about."

The Queen and the Sussexes

The Queen's desk featured photos of some royals but the Duke and the Duchess of Sussex and their son, Archie were nowhere to be seen (Image: Getty)

Royal authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand addressed the Christmas speech in their book Finding Freedom.

They claimed it was one of the reasons why the couple decided to step back as senior royals.

They wrote: "Harry felt as though he and Meghan had long been sidelined by the institution and were not a fundamental part of its future.

"One didn't have to look further than the family photos displayed during the Queen's Speech on Christmas Day.

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's final royal engagements

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's final royal engagements (Image: Express)

"In the Green Drawing Room at Buckingham Palace, where the Queen delivered her address, viewers glimpsed photos of the Cambridges and their children, Charles and Camilla, Prince Philip and a black and white image of the sovereign's father, King George VI.

"Noticeably absent was a photo of Harry, Meghan and their new baby, Archie.

"Palace sources insisted that the photos were chosen to represent the direct line of succession, but for Harry and Meghan, it was yet another sign that they needed to consider their own path."

The Mirror's royal expert Russell Myers claimed the Sussexes were clearly displeased by the decision to not include their portrait on the desk.

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry

Royal authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand addressed the Christmas speech in their book Finding Freedom (Image: Getty)

In an appearance on Channel 5's Meghan and Harry: The New Revelations, Mr Myers said: "The lack of a photograph of them during the Queen's Christmas speech obviously had an effect on them.

“The book will tell you in detail how this made them feel. They felt it was a slight, they felt put out.”

But royal expert Katie Nicholls rejected the theory that the couple had simply been omitted.

She told Channel 5: “What I think the Queen was trying to demonstrate in that message was the future of the Monarchy, the future heirs and the future sovereigns.

"Harry and Harry's son are not there. They don't have that place on the table.”

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