When Prince Harry chose to return to the UK last week to attend a court hearing, he caught royal watchers off guard.
The 38-year-old went to the Royal Courts of Justice alone, without his wife Meghan Markle or their kids.
The family’s former UK residence, Frogmore Cottage, from which they will soon be forced to evict them, is where it is believed he resided.
Harry showed up unexpectedly. Harry rarely travels back across the Atlantic to the UK since he and Meghan have established their permanent residence in Montecito.
His most recent visit before last week was in September, when he returned with his wife to take part in Her Majesty the Queen’s funeral. When the monarch fell ill, the couple were already traveling through Europe. They remained in the UK until after the funeral service.
During Harry and Meghan’s extended stay, they got to see the new Prince and Princess of Wales as well as other members of the royal family.
The royal couples surprised mourners on September 10 when they both showed up at Windsor Castle to view memorials left by members of the public. The Sussexes received a last-minute invitation from William personally inviting the families to participate in the event together.
Naturally, since then, the Sussexes’ ties to the rest of the family have deteriorated. At the end of last year, Harry and Meghan debuted their own frank Netflix series. His explosive memoir, Spare, was then released in January.
Notably, Harry did not make amends with either King Charles or Prince William during his visit to London last week.
But has his brief return made it possible for the Sussexes to travel back for the King’s coronation?
Harry and Meghan have not declared whether they will be present for the momentous occasion. Although they have acknowledged receiving an invitation, they haven’t yet shared their plans for the weekend of the coronation.
Harry has expressed worries in the past about his family back in Britain. Archie and Lilibet, who reside in the US, are “unable to return to his home,” according to a legal representative, despite the fact that the father has expressed a desire to bring them over for a visit.
Perhaps his most recent visit will convince him otherwise. Throughout his stay in London last week, Harry managed to keep a low profile and was only photographed upon arrival and departure from court.
Harry is one of several well-known people suing the Daily Mail, Mail Online, and Mail on Sunday publisher for allegedly using illegal information-gathering methods.
The Prince is also suing Associated Newspapers Limited for libel over a report that claimed he attempted to cover up his legal fight against the British government’s refusal to allow him to pay for police security when he and his family visit the UK.
When Harry and Meghan left their position as senior working royals and moved to the US in 2020, they lost their publicly funded UK police protection.
Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet’s father, the Duke of Sussex, is hesitant to bring them to Britain because of safety concerns, according to previous testimony from his attorneys to the court.
Harry claimed he wanted to foot the bill for his own private police protection, but the government said that was not feasible. Harry was given permission to sue the government by a judge last year, but the case has not yet gone to trial.
The Sussexes’ participation in the Coronation festivities is still up in the air for the time being.
Royal watchers believe that either Prince Harry or his wife Meghan will accompany him when he returns in May. But given his earlier remarks, it seems less and less likely that Archie and Lilibet will make an appearance.