Meghan’s father wedding call-off
MEGHAN Markle has spoken of her sadness as she ended days of speculation and confirmed her father will not walk her down the aisle when she marries Prince Harry.
The US actress said Thomas Markle, who has undergone heart surgery, would not be attending the wedding tomorrow, a decision taken on medical advice.
Sources have said Meghan is concerned for her father, but is being supported by her mother and friends as she gets ready for her big day.
In a statement released by Kensington Palace, the bride-to-be said: “Sadly, my father will not be attending our wedding. I have always cared for my father and hope he can be given the space he needs to focus on his health.
“I would like to thank everyone who has offered generous messages of support. Please know how much Harry and I look forward to sharing our special day with you on Saturday.”
The reclusive former TV lighting director was embroiled in controversy after allegedly being caught staging photographs with the paparazzi.
He reportedly pulled out of attending the ceremony in
St George’s Chapel to avoid embarrassing his daughter, but then later said before his surgery that he wanted to be part of history and hoped to be there, celebrity website TMZ revealed.
With the dramatic upset to the fairy-tale wedding coming just two days before the ceremony, Ms Markle will be bitterly disappointed her father will not be there.
Commentators have criticised what they claim is a lack of assistance provided to Mr Markle from royal aides, but it is understood that since 2016 Meghan and Harry have been trying to help him cope with the growing pressure of being in the limelight.
Ms Markle’s comment that she has always “cared” for her father may be interpreted by some as alluding to this private support she, and Harry, have been giving Mr Markle.
The actress has always wanted her father to be part of her nuptials and she and the prince remain in touch with him.
Mr Markle is understood to have told the couple he cannot travel due to medical advice.
There is no official confirmation yet on who will step in to walk Meghan down the aisle in Windsor Castle’s historic St George’s Chapel, in front of a global television audience of millions.
Meghan’s mother, Doria Ragland, who has arrived in the UK ahead of the big day, is tipped for the role, or perhaps the bride will turn to her closest male friend, Soho House director Markus Anderson.
Meanwhile, Marks & Spencer is to become Markle & Sparkle for one weekend to celebrate the royal wedding.
The Windsor branch of M&S is a focus of the re-brand, and Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are expected to pass the store after tomorrow’s wedding. The store is featuring a sparkly Markle & Sparkle fascia, with windows decked out in the colours of the Union flag.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will marry tomorrow in historic St George’s Chapel.