Harry & Meghan (& William) Attend Anzac Day Ceremonies

Two days out from the birth of Prince [TBA] of Cambridge, the Duke has emerged from Kensington Palace to join Prince Harry and Meghan Markle for an Anzac Day service at Westminster Abbey. This is the second time we’ve seen him play third wheel this week and I like it.

Today started with Harry and Meghan attending a dawn remembrance service at the Wellington Arch sans William. And I mean “started” quite literally since things kicked off at 5 am GMT.

This was Meghan’s first remembrance-related engagement, which brings with it a different set of considerations. Clothing must be somber and respectful, but even more risky to navigate is that there is an eagle-eye focus on behavior from the Royal Family. Earlier in her career the Duchess of Cambridge was criticized for playing with her hair too much during Remembrance Day, while on another occasion she was lambasted for smiling too much.

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The RF doesn’t mess around with remembrance services, which is fitting, but it’s worth noting that service hits them close to home on a couple different levels. For Meghan, coming in from the U.S., this is a bit of a minefield of an engagement, for it requires not only looking the part, but consistently acting the part throughout the day.

Anzac Day, for those who are unfamiliar, was started to honor to recognize fallen Anzac soldiers from World War I’s 1915 Gallipoli landings. It has subsequently broadened to honor all Australian and New Zealand veterans. Within those countries it holds the same significance as Remembrance Day ceremonies in the UK and the RF always recognizes it.

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Indeed, while William, Harry and Meghan were in London doing their part, the Prince of Wales was in Villers-Bretonneux taking part in another remembrance ceremony.

Meghan has garnered herself some criticism of late for dressing informally – this happened during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting and again on Monday at the Stephen Lawrence memorial service. As such, today she wore a hat. I’ve seen some criticism for the fact that it’s a “floppy” hat as opposed to a fascinator, but for God’s sake, she wore a hat. The Duchess of Cambridge has worn similar styles during formal events, including the Grenfell Tower service in December.

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The topper was paired with a coat by Smythe and worn over a black dress that hasn’t yet been ID’d. Her shoes were Sarah Flint and her clutch was Gucci.

The engagement included a stop at the Australian War Memorial and Prince Harry laid a wreath.

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This afternoon the couple appeared again for a formal service at Westminster Abbey, this time joined by William.

Even though they’re often for somber occasions, I do always love seeing the RF inside the Abbey – it’s an absolutely gorgeous space and there’s something to be said for how many moments throughout English history have been recognized within those walls.

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I was glad to see William join the pair today – and impressed given that he has a newborn at home. He shared in passing that the new prince is sleeping well, however no name has been shared.

It’s possible we’ll get one later today – after all, the names for both Prince George and Princess Charlotte were announced when they were two days old. However, I do think that today is Anzac Day means we’re going to end up waiting at least another day. Given the nature of today’s ceremonies, it strikes me as a tad disrespectful even if happy news.

Anyway, we’ll circle back to all things royal baby tomorrow or Friday and catch up on other tidbits from the week.

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For today’s afternoon service, Meghan wore a bespoke Emilia Wickstead dress and blazer with Manolo Blahnik heels, a Jimmy Choo clutch and a Philip Treacy beret. This was her most inherently “British” look to-date, but it rose to the level of the occasion and I liked it quite a bit.

It’s unclear when we’ll next see everyone, but at the very, very least, we’re about three-and-a-half weeks out from the wedding 🙂

 

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