Royal Family ‘risking reputational damage’ by allowing Harry and Meghan at Jubilee, poll finds

The majority of people believe the Royal Family has risked reputational damage after Harry and Meghan attended the first day of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations today, a poll has found.

The Duchess of Sussex, 40, joined her husband Prince Harry, 37, and royals including William and Kate to watch Trooping the Color from the Major General’s Office overlooking the Whitehall parade ground this afternoon.

An animated Meghan appeared to playfully ‘shush’ a group of young royals as they stood at a window overlooking the parade, while Harry was later seen mimicking the gesture in a separate photo.

Their appearance, the first official royal engagement in more than two years, ended months of speculation on whether they would attend the celebrations.

However, they were absent when the Queen, Prince Charles, the Cambridges and their children watched the flypast from the Buckingham Palace balcony, while children Archie and Lilibet were also not seen.

It comes as a poll has today found that Britons believe their attendance is risking reputational damage to the Royal Family.

The poll, conducted by OnePoll, found that 54 percent of the 2,000 Britons it questioned believe Harry and Meghan should have stayed away from the celebrations. GB News reports.

A smiling Meghan Markle looks out of the window as she and Prince Harry travel through crowds near Buckingham Palace today

Harry and Meghan's jubilee appearance is their first official engagement in more than two years.  They are expected to bring along three-year-old Archie and Lilibet, nearly one

Harry and Meghan’s jubilee appearance is their first official engagement in more than two years. They are expected to bring along three-year-old Archie and Lilibet, nearly one

Prince Harry also appeared to shush the same group of young royals as they appeared at the window to watch Trooping the Color

Prince Harry also appeared to shush the same group of young royals as they appeared at the window to watch Trooping the Color

The royals, without Prince Andrew, Harry and Meghan pictured on the Buckingham Palace balcony today

The royals, without Prince Andrew, Harry and Meghan pictured on the Buckingham Palace balcony today

The Red Arrows pictured during their flypast over Buckingham Palace earlier today as thousands gathered along The Mall

The Red Arrows pictured during their flypast over Buckingham Palace earlier today as thousands gathered along The Mall

A further 58 percent also said the couple should not be allowed to film Netflix content during the bank holiday weekend.

And just under a third said the issues and drama surrounding whether Harry and Meghan would appear has made the Platinum Jubilee celebrations less enjoyable.

It comes after Meghan rolled down her car window and flashed a smile at the watching crowds earlier today.

The Duchess appeared to be in high spirits as she gazed out of the window, with a more reserved Harry peeking over her shoulder while they traveled through throngs of royal fans near Buckingham Palace at around 12.20pm.

Building manager Emily Sevenoaks, 28, said she had no idea it was the Sussexes when she decided to start filming on Cleveland Row in St James, central London.

‘I Honestly had no idea it was them,’ she told MailOnline, ‘I heard police escorts and flew over with the camera ready and then I realized mid filming… I was very lucky!’

She said the black Audi and police escort had come out of the gated Stable Yard road, which allows access to Clarence House and St James’s palace.

The couple were believed to be on their way to Buckingham Palace ahead of the historic flypast, which featured 71 aircraft

The poll today also found that a high number of young adults do not feel patriotic or believe the importance of the monarch.

Other findings included 77 per cent of respondents believing that William will be a better king than his father Prince Charles.

2019 -- (From left) Albert Windsor, Prince William holding Prince Louis, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, Kate, Camilla, Vice Admiral Timothy Laurence, Prince Charles, Princess Beatrice, Princess Anne, the Queen, Princess Eugenie, Lady Louise Windsor, Prince Andrew, Prince Harry, Meghan, Isla Phillips, James Viscount Severn, Savannah Phillips, Peter Phillips, Autumn Phillips, Lyla Gilman, Eloise Taylor and Lady Helen Taylor stand with other members of the Royal Family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace to watch the flypast on June 8, 2019

2019 — (From left) Albert Windsor, Prince William holding Prince Louis, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, Kate, Camilla, Vice Admiral Timothy Laurence, Prince Charles, Princess Beatrice, Princess Anne, the Queen, Princess Eugenie, Lady Louise Windsor, Prince Andrew, Prince Harry, Meghan, Isla Phillips, James Viscount Severn, Savannah Phillips, Peter Phillips, Autumn Phillips, Lyla Gilman, Eloise Taylor and Lady Helen Taylor stand with other members of the Royal Family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace to watch the flypast on June 8, 2019

TODAY -- (Left to right) The Duke of Gloucester, Duchess of Gloucester, Princess Alexandra, Duke of Kent, Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence , the Princess Royal, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Prince of Wales , Queen Elizabeth II , the Duchess of Cambridge, Princess Charlotte, Prince Louis, Prince George, the Duke of Cambridge, the Countess of Wessex, James Viscount Severn, Lady Louise Windsor, and the Earl of Wessex (hidden) at Buckingham Palace today

TODAY — (Left to right) The Duke of Gloucester, Duchess of Gloucester, Princess Alexandra, Duke of Kent, Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence , the Princess Royal, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Prince of Wales , Queen Elizabeth II , the Duchess of Cambridge, Princess Charlotte, Prince Louis, Prince George, the Duke of Cambridge, the Countess of Wessex, James Viscount Severn, Lady Louise Windsor, and the Earl of Wessex (hidden) at Buckingham Palace today

Two thirds also said the Queen was right to block Prince Andrew from making an appearance following his settlement with Virginia Giuffre.

It comes as the smaller line-up on the Buckingham Palace balcony today was a clear indication of the Royal Family shifting towards a slimmed-down monarchy, an expert has said.

The Queen decided she wanted to be accompanied only by working royals to watch the flypast today as she focuses on those at the top of the line of succession.

There was room today for Prince Charles and Camilla; Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex ; and Princess Anne and Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence.

Others on the balcony included Prince William and Kate and their children Charlotte, Louis and George, and the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester and Princess Alexandra.

But there was no sign of Prince Harry and Meghan after they quit as working royals in 2020, or Prince Andrew, who stepped down over his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein.

It was in stark contrast to the appearance of the Palace balcony for a flypast three years ago in June 2019 when it was packed with wider members of the Royal Family.

Royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams told MailOnline today:

‘Harry and Meghan were not widely seen during today’s ceremony. The Queen, whilst believing they are much loved members of the royal family, is fully aware of how unpredictable and whimsical they can be.

‘They rely totally on their royal connections for their contracts with Netflix and Spotify and their profile.

‘The continuation of the rift is in neither their interest or in the royal family’s, but their interview on Oprah was very destructive and has affected the monarchy’s popularity, especially with the young. It was also given whilst Prince Philip was ill.

‘Their future status is as royal outsiders and today’s balcony line up made this clear.’

Dan Wootton Tonight airs on GB News at 9pm from Monday-Thursday.

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