Tricia Goddard on the influence of Meghan Markle on the royals
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The Duchess of Sussex turned 41 on Thursday. Meghan spent the day privately and, unlike last year, didn’t pair the occasion with any charitable initiative.
The day was described as “lovely” by a representative for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
Opening up on how Meghan was celebrating, the spokesperson told Us Weekly on Thursday: “The Duchess is enjoying a lovely birthday this year with her family and dear friends.”
The 41-year-old was surely in the company of her doting husband Prince Harry and their two children, Lilibet ‘Lili’ Diana and Archie Harrison.
Meghan may have also been joined by her mother Doria Ragland, who is believed to be based in the Los Angeles neighbourhood of View Park-Windsor Hills.
Some of Meghan’s relatives in England publicly marked her birthday on Thursday.
Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, and Prince William were the first among the royals to take to Twitter to share their happy wishes.
Using their official Twitter and Instagram accounts, they wrote: “Wishing a happy birthday to The Duchess of Sussex!”
This message was accompanied by a picture showing Meghan smiling in the white outfit donned on June 3 for the service of thanksgiving held at St Paul’s Cathedral.
Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, shared a similar message via their accounts.
Adding a red balloon emoji, they wrote: “Happy birthday to The Duchess of Sussex!”
This tweet also included a picture of Meghan taken outside of St Paul’s Cathedral in June.
One notable absence in this public display was the Twitter account representing the Queen and working royals who don’t have their own online profiles.
Her Majesty is thought to have wished her happy birthday privately to Meghan.
The social media silence, on the other hand, is believed to be part of a new policy, which would see only the Royal Family Twitter account marking only the milestone birthdays of non-working royals.
The Daily Express royal correspondent Richard Palmer wrote: “It is thought the Queen congratulated Meghan privately yesterday but her official website neglected to mention her birthday after deciding it will only mark the birthdays of non-working members of the family when they end in a zero.”
Fans of Meghan have also publicly celebrated her birthday throughout the day.
At midnight on Thursday, some of the Sussexes’ supporters launched a new fundraising effort to last until the birthday of Prince Harry on September 15.
The donations will be given to the Duke’s beloved charity Sentebale, which supports young people affected by HIV in Lesotho and Botswana.
Over the past few days, the initiative has already raised more than £20,000 thanks to the donations made by hundreds of supporters.
Other people and organisations close to the Duchess also wished her a happy birthday on Twitter.
Photographer Misan Harriman, who took the first official portrait of Lilibet ‘Lili’ Diana in June and the picture of the Sussexes released in February 2021 to announce Meghan was expecting a baby girl, shared on Twitter a snap showing the Duchess from behind.
He wrote: “Wishing you the happiest of birthdays Meghan.”
The Twitter account of UN Women, of whom she was named an advocate for Political Participation and Leadership in 2015, wrote in French: “Happy birthday Meghan Markle!
“Thank you for helping us build a more just and equal world, where women participate and lead as equals.”
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