Queen calls 'crisis talks' on Harry and Meghan's royals future
Queen Elizabeth will host crisis talks with senior royals and Prince Harry today in a bid to find a solution to the future role he and Meghan Markle will play.
The queen will be joined at her Sandringham estate in Norfolk by Prince Charles and Prince William for the crunch meeting at which the "next steps" will be decided, a source claimed.
It will be the first time the four will have met since the issue engulfed the royal family.
Before them will be a range of options, and it is likely the royals will try to reach some agreement before the meeting ends to stop the immediate crisis causing lasting damage to the monarchy.
The queen attended church at Sandringham yesterday.
Members of the public gathering near St Mary Magdalene's said they felt sorry for the queen, with some saying Harry and Meghan should not receive any more taxpayers' money.
Jean Acton (70), from Fakenham, described the crisis as a "slap in the face" for the 93-year-old queen.
"I feel desperately sorry for her. It must be horrible - for any parent, let alone if you're a royal or not," she said.
Asked about Harry and Meghan, she said: "I think they should give any monies back. You can't have your cake and eat it. I just think they've done the dirty on the queen."
Members of the public applauded as the queen left the church after the service.
She waved from her car as it pulled away.
Harry and Meghan, known in Britain as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, are said to have left the queen and other family members feeling "hurt" by their bombshell announcement that they plan to step back as senior royals, become financially independent and split their time between the UK and North America.
On Thursday, the queen, Charles and William gave orders for their households to work with Harry and Meghan's team to quickly find a "workable solution" to their desire to change the direction of their royal lives while still supporting the queen.
"The family will gather at Sandringham to talk things through, attended by the queen, Charles, William and Harry," a source said. "Following a series of meetings and consultations across the last few days, there are a range of possibilities for the family to review which take into account the thinking the Sussexes outlined earlier in the week.
"As we have said previously, making a change to the working life and role in the monarchy for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex requires complex and thoughtful discussions.
"Next steps will be agreed at the meeting.
"The request for this to be resolved at pace is still her majesty's wish - the aim remains days, not weeks.
"There is genuine agreement and understanding that any decision will take time to be implemented."
Meghan flew a few days ago to Canada, where she had spent an extended festive break with Harry and baby son Archie on Vancouver Island.
She is with her child, but the source said it is likely Meghan will be able to participate in the meeting by phone.
Reports said William had told a friend he and Harry are now "separate entities".
The newspaper reported William as saying: "I've put my arm around my brother all our lives and I can't do that any more. We're separate entities.
"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 team."