Queen’s funeral: Will Harry wear a military uniform?

With Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral approaching, much remains unclear about what exactly will happen when the world bids farewell to Her Majesty for the last time.

News.com.au put the call forward for any questions you may have to our Royal Expert Daniela Elser in the lead-up to the funeral.

For many of our curious readers, it was all about Harry and Meghan, with questions about what role the controversial Duke and Duchess of Sussex have played in the wake of the Queen’s death so far.

And many wanted to know their future role.

I also had a lot of questions about what’s next. I wanted to know when Australia expects its next royal visit, and whether the new king could change the mind of the republican movement in Australia.

Is there a chance Prince Harry will wear a military uniform at the Queen’s funeral?

Only members of the royal family have been allowed to wear military colors while mourning Her Majesty since her death – but recent vigils with Prince Andrew and Harry in military uniform have sparked confusion.

This means that the Duke of Sussex, who resigned from his royal duties in 2020, and Prince Andrew, who was stripped of his titles over his links to convicted child sex abuser Jeffrey Epstein, will not be able to wear a military uniform at the funeral tonight.

However, in recent days, the couple managed to wear a uniform during the vigils.

“I think where the flip-flops with Harry came from is that it became really inconsistent that Andrew was able to wear his uniform to the vigil,” Elser said.

“Harry and Andrew would have to wear mourning clothes, and black suits for the funeral, so Harry would also have to wear black suits at the grandchildren’s vigil.

“I think it was this inconsistency and that it would seem a bit hypocritical in the palace as a part, which is why the change happened.”

What does it mean for Harry to go to the funeral without his uniform?

Not wearing his uniform may have been a sore point for Harry, who has arguably seen the most active service in recent royal history.

“You have to imagine that it would be very difficult because his service, he spent 10 years in the military, he made two tours on the front line in Afghanistan, which is unbelievable,” Elser said.

“He’s talked a lot about how important that is.

“He’s clearly focused a lot of his efforts since then on working with veterans through Invictus Games.

“So at this moment, it must be really hard for him not to be able to stand there in his uniform.”

Why weren’t Harry and Meghan invited from the state reception?

Harry and Meghan, who are notorious for stepping down from their major royal duties in 2020, were not recently invited to attend Her Majesty the Queen’s intimate state reception.

A reception is a diplomatic event that hosts visiting heads of state at Buckingham Palace on the Sunday night before the funeral.

According to Elser, the list was actually drawn up while Harry and Meghan were working members of the royal family and it is likely that they have not been updated since then.

“Just put this under ‘huge things’ on the side of the palace,” she said.

“In a plan that has been in place for years, Meghan and Harry were on the list of people to be invited because, until 2020, they were working members of the royal family and therefore could have been invited.

“But then they had to be disenfranchised, because they were obviously no longer working members of the royal family. So it was just a chemo.”

What happens when you are no longer a “working member” of the royal family?

Elser likened being a ‘working member’ to being an ambassador for the royal family – and due to the turmoil caused by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, they are not ambassadors.

“The working members are like ambassadors, they are official representatives of the king,” she explained.

“They are not just members of the Queen’s family.”

“Harry and Meghan no longer hold any kind of official position – they are obviously still the king’s son and daughter-in-law – they are clearly still a big part of the family, but they don’t hold any kind of official position.”

Why is there so much interest about Meghan and Harry? Was it overshadowed by the death of the Queen?

Elser said that this “unfinished business” for Harry and Meghan is what makes their plot line so charming around the world.

After the fallout of 2020 with the royal family, she said, there’s a lot of controversy left in the tank — which is why readers can’t get enough of it.

“We’re still watching things go, Harry still has his book to come out,” she said. It is clear that they are still talking about their experiences within the royal family.

What somewhat added to the drama of the past 10 days was the fact that Harry and Meghan were in the UK quite by accident, when Her Majesty passed away.

“So there was this extra level of family drama that we wouldn’t have had if they had come back to California.”

However, Elser said that it is likely that Meghan will be included in the formalities, as they have been in recent days, even if the couple were in the United States at the time of the Queen’s death,

“We may not have seen anything like this walk outside Windsor Castle, where William, Kate, Harry and Meghan were walking around, saying good wishes and talking to people.

“I definitely think we would have seen Harry and Meghan involved in things like moving the coffin from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall.

Has the recent interest changed Meghan’s mind about leaving the royal family?

“I would be quite surprised if there was this shift and she decided she wanted to go back to it,” Elser stated.

But with the funeral possibly the most watched event in world history, there’s no doubt that Meghan has been brought back into the spotlight if she likes it or not.

“Given that there will be an unprecedented number of eyeballs on her, and on the rest of the royal family, of course, tonight, it really does bring her and Harry back to the heart of the royal story in a way no one could have predicted.”

When will the new king and queen return to Australia?

Elser says Australians are expecting a visit sometime soon.

“I’m sure we’ll get a royal tour in the near future.

“Once the mourning period is over and once things settle down a bit in the UK, we will see Charles and Camilla really want to get out into the Commonwealth and try to bolster support in the Commonwealth, especially among the larger countries – Australia, New Zealand and Canada.”

What can the new royals do about the republican movement in Australia?

Elser thinks very little, but Australia also may not be in a position now to break away.

“I don’t think they can do anything to appeal to us,” she said. “I don’t think it’s really about what they can do. I think it’s about who we want to become and how we feel as a nation.”

However, Australia, like the rest of the world, has a lot on its plate after emerging from a global pandemic, and with the war in Ukraine raging,

“I think Australia, like much of the world, has much more to think about and care about than who exactly is our head of state,” Elser said.

“I think there will come an inevitable point that we reconsider this matter.”

But it is by no means a one-sided argument as recent polls have found that 60 per cent of Australians want to remain in the monarchy.

What do we expect from tonight’s funeral?

Elser said he’s expecting a “really emotional few hours” while showing off some interesting royal dynamics.

“It will be interesting to see if there is some kind of interaction between William and Kate and Harry and Meghan,” she said.

“With George and Charlotte out there, I think it would be really cool to watch them.

“It is impossible to imagine putting your child in a situation like that. It is hard to even wrap yourself around, I think as an adult, let alone as a child.”

What you need to know about the Queen’s funeral

After a very long walk from her Balmoral home in Scotland, Queen Elizabeth II will finally be buried on Monday. Britain’s tallest queen sat on the throne for 70 years before her death on September 8 at the age of 96.

The state funeral for Queen Elizabeth II will take place at 11 am local time on Monday 19 September.

For Australians who adjust from their homes, procedures will start on Monday evening.

The funeral will begin at 8pm for residents of NSW, Victoria, Queensland, ACT and Tasmania.

In the Northern Territory and South Australia, it will start at 7.30pm.

In Western Australia, service will begin at 6pm.

Viewers can watch the live broadcast on News.com.au, which will be available to watch from 6pm AEST.

Originally published as a last word on Harry’s unified saga as the funeral approaches

Read related topics:Queen Elizabeth

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