Inside Kate And Meghan’s ‘Professional Relationship’

The instruction from the top (ie William) is that there is to be no treading on one another’s toes

Kate Middleton Prince William Meghan Markle Prince Harry

by Grazia |

All eyes were on the Duchesses of Cambridge and Sussex last week when the sisters-in-law joined their husbands for a special reception at Buckingham Palace to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the investiture of the Prince of Wales.

It was the first time the ‘Fab Four’ had been seen together since attending church on Christmas Day amid relentless reports of tensions between the princes and rumours of a froideur between the duchesses. While Kate and Meghan did not spend much time together on the actual day (they reportedly arrived and left separately), they were photographed briefly laughing together at the reception. For most of the hour-long gathering the duchesses worked the room separately with their husbands. But it didn’t help quash speculation about tensions between the foursome with one newspaper describing the atmosphere as ‘frosty’.

Meghan, usually so confident on royal engagements, appeared slightly nervous, holding on to Harry for support and waiting awkwardly as the couple were asked to let the Queen, the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall and the Cambridges inspect the investiture regalia on display before entering the reception.

Royal sources say that Kate is said to be keen to dispel the rumours that she and Meghan don’t get along. ‘She knows that the stories about them not being friends and rumours of catfights benefit neither of them,’ says a source. ‘They might not have a huge amount in common, but Kate has no issue with Meghan. She wants them to get along, not just for Harry’s sake, but because two royal sisters-in-law at loggerheads wouldn’t be good and Kate knows that. For Kate it’s about keeping their relationship professional and putting on a show of togetherness.’

That said, the fact is that the duchesses don’t spend much time together. With Meghan still carrying out a full diary while preparing to move house and give birth, Kate is juggling royal duties with looking after her three children. While Kate is in a unique position to give Meghan advice as a royal mother-to-be, Meghan has a close cohort of friends such as Serena Williams and Amal Clooney who she confides in.

As the Sussexes prepare to move to Windsor, there will, very soon, be a real distance between the two couples. Harry and Meghan are due to leave Kensington Palace later this month and the move is expected to coincide with the formal separation of the royal household, which will see the royals’ staff split. Two members of the communications team have already been assigned the task of handling press ahead of the imminent royal birth.

Meanwhile, the Cambridges will have their own team of aides handling day-to- day affairs. According to one courtier, Kate will be working on her major new initiative, which will focus on the mental health and well-being of young people in Britain, and will see her working with a committee of professionals including neurosurgeons. ‘You’ll be seeing the duchess do a lot more of this kind of work over the year. She’s very much at the helm,’ says an aide. Last month, Kate hosted a dinner at the Palace for the committee – a sign of her increasing responsibilities. While she has teamed up with William and Harry in the past, this will be her first solo project.

The Cambridges’ initiatives will be different to the Sussexes’ and to what Meghan and Harry plan to do in the Commonwealth – and their engagements are reflecting their different interests and responsibilities. William and Kate’s rain-drenched visit to Blackpool last week, where they witnessed some of the town’s poorest residences, was a stark contrast to Harry and Meghan’s (surprise) attendance at the We Day concert in London. While Harry used the opportunity to deliver a positive and upbeat message to young people and introduced his wife on to the stage to a rock star’s reception, William and Kate attended a discussion to talk about the social problems facing the people of Blackpool.

The instruction from the top (ie William) is that there is to be no treading on one another’s toes. ‘They each want to take control of their own niche areas. at’s very important,’ says a source. Meghan, who joined a panel to celebrate International Women’s Day at King’s College London last Friday and joined the royals for Monday’s Commonwealth Day service alongside the Queen, will soon be preparing to take maternity leave. For Kate, it is a ripe chance to focus the attention on her new mission. She will have centre stage, and she plans to use it.

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