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Harry and Meghan hold ‘upper hand’ on King Charles’ coronation

The Windsors are a house divided — yet again.

This week, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle confirmed to Page Six they have been asked to vacate Frogmore Cottage — in a move being dubbed “Frogxit” — while disgraced Prince Andrew has been asked to leave Royal Lodge, his home of 20 years and move to Frogmore.

The swirl of headlines are now threatening to overshadow King Charles’ coronation at Westminster Abbey on May 6.

Charles and his coterie of advisors will want to settle things in time for the ceremony, as Hugo Vickers, writer and friend of the royal family, told Page Six: “Nothing must deflect from the actual coronation, it’s very important. 

“I don’t know if Harry and Meghan will both come [to the coronation], but the message I’m getting is that Charles is concerned about his son and wishes to leave the door open for him.”

Meghan Markel, King Charles and Prince Harry
Although King Charles is kicking Prince Harry and Meghan Markle out of Frogmore Cottage, a source said he is leaving “a door open” for his youngest son.
Samir Hussein/WireImage

Charles’ decision to boot the Duke and Duchess of Sussex out of their UK home comes just weeks after the publication of Harry’s memoir, “Spare,” in which he revealed a laundry list of family secrets, including how he and his older brother, Prince William, urged their father not to marry Camilla Parker-Bowles, who will soon be crowned Queen Consort alongside her husband.

One highly-placed palace insider said that it was the perfect time for Charles to ask his son to leave his home as “there is not much sympathy left for Harry and Meghan in the UK.

Despite everything, Page Six has been told by multiple sources that the Sussexes have an open invite to the coronation.

Official invites will go out this week. And it’s inevitable that attention will either be on the couple’s presence or their absence.

Frogmore Cottage
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle paid back around $3 million to British taxpayers who had originally funded extensive renovations to Frogmore Cottage.

“Whatever happens, Harry and Meghan will always be the ones in the headlines,” the palace insider said. “Whether they come or they stay at home in California, they do hold the upper hand.”

Another well-placed royal source told Page Six that Buckingham Palace officials expect the Sussexes to fly over, adding: “Harry has always vowed to uphold the values of the monarchy … and how do you not come to your father’s coronation?”

But for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who will mark three years away from royal life and Harry’s homeland this month, being chucked out of Frogmore reportedly feels like yet another move to oust them out of the family completely.

Meghan Markle
Meghan Markle joined Prince Harry for dinner at San Vicente Bungalows in Los Angeles Tuesday night.
The Daily Stardust / ShotbyNYP/MEGA / BACKGRID
Prince Harry
Prince Harry arrives at Hollywood power player hotspot San Vicente Bungalows in LA.
The Daily Stardust / ShotbyNYP/MEGA / BACKGRID

A Sussex insider said Harry and Megahan are most hurt because Frogmore was a gift from the late Queen Elizabeth, adding: “It’s a shame, of course.

“Frogmore was intended to originally be their forever home and was a gift from the queen before they ever thought of leaving the UK.”

Security is another big issue,

Sarah Ferguson and Prince Andrew
Prince Andrew is being forced to leave Royal Lodge, his home of 20 years, which boasts 30 rooms. He shares the home with his ex-wife, Sarah Ferguson.
Getty Images

Harry is currently suing the British government over the rights to have funded security for while in the UK. Frogmore is based on the Windsor Estate, close by Windsor Castle, and extremely secure.

“If they don’t have Frogmore or a different residence on royal grounds, they do not have security in UK unless they ask and are granted,” said the Sussex insider. 

The couple were all smiles as they stepped out for dinner at Hollywood power player hot spot San Vicente Bungalows in Hollywood this week, where, Page Six is told, they chatted to actress Kate Hudson and sat by the roaring fire.

And the insider was at pains to stress they are more than happy at their $14.5 million home in Montecito. California: “They are not victims, nor do they feel like victims. They have a home to live in, so they are just going along with what is asked and trying to move along.”

Royal Lodge at Windsor
Prince Andrew has reportedly been asked to leave Royal Lodge — but doesn’t want to.
zz/KGC-09/330/STAR MAX/IPx

While it may seem as if the bid to turf Harry and Andrew out of their homes has come out of the blue, plans have been afoot for the past year, Page Six is told.

Palace sources said the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were originally asked to leave Frogmore last year before being given another year’s lease — although Sussex insiders deny this.

Conversations to move the Duke of York started after Queen Elizabeth died in September, sources added.

The Sussexes departure will come just in time for the release of Buckingham Palace’s annual financial report at the end of the month, the end of the British fiscal year.

The report shows just how much is being spent on the royal family by the British taxpayer. 

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
Whether by their presence or absence, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will overshadow King Charles’ coronation, sources said.

Charles has made it known he wants to cut costs and provide a streamlined royal family.

Sussex sources, meanwhile, said they had no clue “what the motivation” was on Buckingham Palace’s side.

The Sussexes lived at Frogmore Cottage from 2019 to 2020 after moving from their two-bedroom Nottingham Cottage, within the grounds of Kensington Palace in London, just before their son Archie’s birth in May 2019.

King Charles and Prince Harry
Prince Harry and his “Pa,” King Charles.
Samir Hussein/WireImage

They transformed the property from a former staff residence of five apartments into a single-family home, but the extensive renovations, valued at around $3 million, became a hot topic as they were paid for by the Sovereign Grant — the UK fund set aside for royals that is funded by taxpayers.

When Harry and Meghan moved to the US, they paid back the cash.

Last year, they only stayed at Frogmore for a few days during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations and then again to attend her funeral.

“It’s wasteful,” the royal source said of the couple keeping a home they very rarely use.

Princess Eugenie
Princess Eugenie, Prince Harry’s cousin, stayed at Frogmore with her husband and baby after he moved to the US.

It’s now being suggested that Prince Andrew — who is no longer a working royal after being forced to pay millions to Jeffrey Epstein victim Virginia Guiffre — will move into Frogmore.

His youngest daughter Princess Eugenie, along with her husband, Jack Brooksbank, and son August, have also stayed there.

Andrew has shared the seven-bedroom Royal Lodge with his ex-wife, Sarah “Fergie” Ferguson, for 20 years. Ferguson told The Telegraph Friday she continues to stand by her ex, adding she will “always be there” for him.

A source who knows Andrew told Page Six that talks to get him out of Royal Lodge began in earnest after the queen’s death, adding, It’s been an ongoing thing, Andrew didn’t want to leave, but he has no choice.”

Additional reporting by Emily Smith

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