“It’s great to be back”

Duchess Meghan was all smiles as she returned to the UK where she and Prince Harry embarked on a five-day working visit to promote their charities and causes.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex stepped out in style on Monday in Manchester, England, where Meghan gave the keynote address at the opening ceremony of the One Young World Summit.

She took to the podium in a monochrome red ensemble of red trousers, blouse, scarf and tops, with her hair pulled back in a long ponytail. Harry, watching from the side, was wearing a navy suit and tie.

The Duchess greeted the cheering crowd and said ‘so nice to be back in the UK’

Meghan recalled her first time at the event in 2014. “I was the girl from ‘Suits’ and I was surrounded by world leaders, humanitarians, prime ministers and activists who I had such a deep and long-standing respect and admiration for. ” he told the delegates. “And they invited me to take a seat at the table.”

The crowd roared in approval as she looked at her husband and smiled. “Reuniting here on UK soil with him by my side makes it all feel full circle,” Meghan added.

He spoke about representation, inclusion and access and applauded the attendees as ambassadors for shifting the world’s perspective “to one of curiosity over criticism.”

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Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry attend the One Young World Summit in Manchester, England, on their UK working trip

It is the second time Harry, 37, and Meghan, 41, have been in Harry’s home country in two months, following a brief trip in July for her grandmother Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee. They made just one public appearance back then and spent most of their time behind closed doors with their children Archie, 3, and Lilibet, 1, at Frogmore Cottage in Windsor. (This time the children are not with them.)

They have not said whether they plan to take the same low-key approach beyond their three announced public appearances – which include stops in London and Dusseldorf, Germany – for charities they have described as “close to their hearts”.

The couple, who now live in California, also briefly visited the UK in April on their way to watch the Invictus Games in Holland. They went for a quick chat with the Queen at Windsor Castle but never appeared in public.

The people of Sussex should not expect to be welcomed with open arms for this visit – especially not by the British media, who have greeted their arrival with headlines describing them in terms such as “tragic” and “delusional”. .

Almost two-thirds of Britons have no sympathy for the couple, according to a recent YouGov poll.

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Duchess Meghan attended the One Young World Summit with Prince Harry, where she gave the keynote address.

Duchess Meghan attended the One Young World Summit with Prince Harry, where she gave the keynote address.

Nor should one expect a warm reunion with Harry’s royal relations, including his father Prince Charles and brother Prince William.

Key relatives are out of town or busy. The 96-year-old Queen, who is at her Scottish holiday castle, Balmoral, faces ongoing ‘mobility’ issues.

She had to withdraw from attending her beloved Braemar Gathering, the nearby 900-year-old Highland Games event, which she has never missed in her 70-year reign. Charles and his wife, Duchess Camilla, and the Queen’s daughter, Princess Anne, attended in her place.

The Queen will remain at Balmoral and spend Tuesday fulfilling her constitutional duty as head of state for Liz Truss to be sworn in as the new head of government to replace outgoing Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

It is the first time in her reign (14 prime ministers) that transition has taken place away from London.

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Princess Anne, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall laugh during the Braemar Gathering Highland Games on September 3, 2022, in Braemar, Scotland.

Princess Anne, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall laugh during the Braemar Gathering Highland Games on September 3, 2022, in Braemar, Scotland.

Meanwhile, the relationship between the Sussexes and the royal family remains frosty after their surprise exit in 2020 and the sensational TV interview with Oprah Winfrey in 2021.

There have been no public signs of reconciliation between Harry and his brother and father, and only a few joint appearances.

And on the horizon is Harry’s “intimate and heartfelt” memoir, due to be published by Penguin Random House by the end of the year.

For months, royal commentators have been wringing their hands that Harry’s book will be an all-out attack on his family and the monarchy, an opportunity for him to vent his entrenched resentment about how “the establishment” has treated him, his wife, and his late mother, Princess Diana;

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Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex leave after a service at St Paul's Cathedral in London on the second day of Queen Elizabeth II's 70-year Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex leave after a service at St Paul’s Cathedral in London on the second day of Queen Elizabeth II’s 70-year Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

Love them or hate them, few Brits are indifferent to Harry and Meghan, it seems.

“I wonder why they’re coming,” read one of the Daily Mail’s many headlines last week about the couple’s visit.

A tabloid interviewed people on the street in Manchester ahead of the Sussexes’ One Young World performance.

“They are not welcome,” Ellen Jones, 52, a lifelong resident of the UK’s second largest city, told the Express. “I’m not sure why they decided to come back, I don’t think they’re very popular here.”

But they are still popular with at least some charities and socially conscious organizations, such as the One Young World summit, described as a conference of more than 2,000 of the “brightest young leaders from every country and sector, working to accelerate social impact. “

On Tuesday, they will go to Dusseldorf to promote “One Year to Go” at the next Invictus Games, which will be held there in September 2023. The international sports games for wounded warriors and veterans were founded by Harry in 2014 and continue to be one of its most admirable causes.

On Thursday, the couple will return to London to attend the WellChild Awards, the annual gala for a charity which helps support seriously ill children and their families. Harry has been his patron since 2007.

Harry and Meghan’s US-based Archewell team have given few details about what else the couple might do during the visit, nor have they discussed the sensitive issue of protecting their security while in the UK

Harry, who cited security threats as one of the reasons they left, is in a legal battle with the government over whether he and his family should receive high-level royal protection and who should pay for her when they are in the UK

Harry and Meghan can count on at least some fan support this week: From budding new world leaders. From sick but brave children. And from wounded warriors who are pushed into athletic competitions. For now, it might be enough.

Contributed by Kim Willis

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Duchess Meghan, Prince Harry return to UK to promote charities, causes

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