This is the first picture of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle since they announced that they would get married in the New Year. Prince Harry was asked when he knew Meghan was ‘The One’ and he answered ‘the very first time we met’. He also said that he was ‘thrilled’ to be engaged to the actress.
The couple appeared at The Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace this afternoon after announcing their engagement. Ms Markle said she was ‘so very happy, thank you’ to be engaged to Harry. The prince said he was ‘thrilled, over the moon’ adding: ‘Very glad it’s not raining as well.’ The couple were smiling and giggling throughout their appearance. When Harry was asked how he proposed, Ms Markle replied ‘Save that’, with Harry adding: ‘That will come later’. The pair are giving a television interview to be broadcast on Monday evening.
The couple braved the cold and answered a number of questions from the waiting press, before waving at the cameras and walking back through the garden arm in arm. The sunken garden is poignantly the site of the memorial garden created in memory of Harry’s late mother Diana, Princess of Wales to mark the 20th anniversary of her death this year. It was one of the princess’s favourite parts of the palace grounds. Harry and Ms Markle were separated from the media by several metres of water, standing on the other side of the large ornamental pond.
Kensington Palace said the prince designed Ms Markle’s engagement ring himself – using two stones which belong to his late mother. The two outside stones are diamonds from the personal collection of Diana, Princess of Wales.
At the centre is a diamond from Botswana, a country that holds special significance for Harry who has visited many times since he was a child. It is also a place the couple has spent time together over the last year and a half, Kensington Palace said. The band is made of gold and the ring was made by Cleave and Company, Court Jewellers and Medallists to Her Majesty The Queen.
Clarence House confirmed their engagement this morning saying that Prince Harry had sought permission from the Queen after proposing to Meghan earlier this month. The Prince of Wales has said he is ‘thrilled’ and ‘very happy indeed’ after the announcement.
Prince Charles told reporters the news was ‘very good’ and added: ‘Thrilled for them both. They’ll be very happy indeed.’ He spoke at the start of a series of engagements in Poundbury in Dorchester, Dorset, which is built on Duchy of Cornwall land. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge said: ‘We are very excited for Harry and Meghan. It has been wonderful getting to know Meghan and to see how happy she and Harry are together.’
Ms Markle’s parents wished their daughter and Harry ‘a lifetime of happiness’, adding: ‘We are incredibly happy for Meghan and Harry. ‘Our daughter has always been a kind and loving person. To see her union with Harry, who shares the same qualities, is a source of great joy for us as parents.’
The royal wedding will take place in the spring of next year, and Harry and Ms Markle will appear at a photocall at Kensington Palace on Monday afternoon to celebrate their engagement, and record a television broadcast, due to be screened on Monday evening. Fifth in line to the throne Harry, 33, has been dating the 36-year-old star – who found fame in the US legal drama Suits – since the summer of 2016. Their 16-month whirlwind romance blossomed when they met through mutual friends in London, and the pair have been almost inseparable in recent months.
The much-anticipated news was confirmed by the Prince of Wales in a brief statement issued by Clarence House. It read: ‘His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales is delighted to announce the engagement of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle.’
It revealed that the pair became engaged in London earlier this month. ‘Prince Harry has informed Her Majesty the Queen and other close members of his family. Prince Harry has also sought and received the blessing of Ms Markle’s parents,’ the statement said. The couple will live together in Harry’s current home, Nottingham Cottage at Kensington Palace. Ms Markle will become an HRH and a senior royal after marrying Harry and joining the Windsors. She is expected to become a duchess – just like Kate Middleton did when she became the Duchess of Cambridge after saying her vows in 2011.