Queen Elizabeth II has summoned the Royal Households’ staff to come up with a solution amid Prince Harry and Meghan Markle‘s decision to step back as “senior” members of the royal family and split their time between the U.K. and North America, multiple outlets report.
According to the BBC, citing its royal correspondent Nicholas Witchell, The Queen has been in contact with Prince Charles and Prince William. ITV News’ royal editor Chris Ship also reported the teams are expected to work “at pace” with the Sussexes and governments to find “workable solutions” within days, not weeks.
“The Queen has convened a meeting of all four royal households and ‘tasked’ them with coming up with a ‘workable’ future role for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex within ‘days not weeks,” The Daily Mail’s royal correspondent Rebecca English also tweeted.
The reports came less than 24 hours after the Duke and Duchess of Sussex dropped the bombshell in an Instagram post.
“After many months of reflection and internal discussions, we have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new role within this institution,” the post began. “We intend to step back as ‘senior’ members of the Royal Family and work to become financially independent, while continuing to fully support Her Majesty The Queen. It is with your encouragement, particularly over the last few years, that we feel prepared to make this adjustment. We now plan to balance our time between the United Kingdom and North America, continuing to honor our duty to The Queen, the Commonwealth, and our patronages.”
The royal couple claimed this “geographic balance” would enable them to raise their 8-month-old son, Archie Harrison, “with an appreciation” for royal tradition while also providing the family of three with “the space to focus on the next chapter,” including the launch of a new charitable initiative.
“We look forward to sharing the full details of this exciting next step in due course, as we continue to collaborate with Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Cambridge and all relevant parties,” they concluded in the post. “Until then, please accept our deepest thanks for your continued support.”
While some predicted a change was coming, others were shocked by the news. The BBC reported that no other royal, including The Queen and Prince William, was consulted before the announcement. The news organization also reported that Buckingham Palace is “disappointed” by the decision and that senior royals feel hurt by the Sussexes’ actions.
“Discussions with The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are at an early stage,” Buckingham Palace said in a statement. “We understand their desire to take a different approach, but these are complicated issues that will take time to work through.”