Meghan Markle and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, took their children on a surprise outing to support their respective husbands during a charity polo match in Wokingham. The Duchess of Sussex took a break from her maternity leave to watch the match with her newborn son Archie and sister-in-law Kate and her children – George, Charlotte and Louis – amid growing speculation of a break between Prince Harry and Prince William. Royal expert Duncan Larcombe claimed the Palace “carefully orchestrated” the outing to have the Duchesses have a “long overdue show of solidarity” between the two families.
Speaking to Nine News Australia, Mr Larcombe said: “It was carefully orchestrated. There are always photographers at these things.
“They all looked very happy today, against the backdrop of the rift. They may not be the best of buddies but you’ve got to take a lot with a pinch of salt.
“I think they’ll be rather pleased with those pictures because it is a bit refreshing. It has all been rumours of this rift and that’s never good for the royals because William and Harry have always been more than brothers, they’ve always been absolute soulmates all the way through their lives.”
Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton have been dogged by persistent rumours of a rift between them but royal commentators have long claimed the alleged fall out happened between Prince William and Prince Harry.
Mr Larcombe also suggested the Palace had been planning to have the Duchess of Sussex and Duchess of Cambridge out together for weeks due to a “mysterious” restriction of press access at the polo club where the match was to be held.
He continued: “The only clue we had in advance because the Palace, as ever, were very tight-lipped was the fact that these polo matches are covered by large groups of photographers.
“Mysteriously three or four weeks ago, when the photographers were trying to be credited to try and get pictures, there was a massive restriction on the numbers so there really weren’t many there allowed in.
“We knew it wasn’t going to be just Harry and William but I don’t think anyone expected to see Archie and to see the Cambridge children there playing happy families. Long overdue show of solidarity between them all.”
Indeed, Meghan Markle brought her two-months-old son Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor to assist to his first polo match less than a week after he was christened at Windsor Palace.
Kate joined her sister-in-law with her three young children spending her time cheering Prince William on as she oversaw Prince George and Princess Charlotte playing around the outskirts of the field.
At one point an excited Prince Louis, Kate and William’s youngest son, was spotted running along the sidelines before the Duchess picked him up.
Prince George, five, appeared to be having fun as he played with a polo mallet and joined younger sister Charlotte, four, for a game of football.
The Cambridge’s children were last seen at Trooping the Colours in early June to celebrate the Queen’s official birthday at Buckingham Palace.
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Body language expert Judi James said: “With three small children to amuse and herd around and with Louis now hugely active walking about on his own, Kate – like most mothers of toddlers – looks totally absorbed in her role of protector and entertainer-in chief.
“‘Relaxed’ probably isn’t the word for her body language here but she looks happy but mindful as she tries to keep her eye on George and Charlotte while holding onto a wriggling Louis.”
New mother Meghan, on the other hand, looks concerned with the new addition to her family.
Judi said: “Meghan’s body language ranges from besotted motherhood as she cradles a much more serene baby Archie and smiles down at his face or kisses his head to some glances of what looks like anxiety as she appears to stand alone waiting for Harry.
“Her sleeping baby appears to be her whole world here and in between some idealistic and very loving poses between the three of them she appears to be looking protective and slightly new-mother wary as she cradles Archie in a blanket.”
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