It was the wedding that captivated millions around the world, as Prince Harry and Meghan – the new Duke and Duchess of Sussex – declared their love for one another and became husband and wife.
But behind the scenes, palace sources tell New Idea a series of intense arguments, in the lead-up to the wedding and in the days that followed, have marred the joyous occasion, causing tension among senior members of the royal family.
Central to the drama was Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, who tried her very best to sabotage Harry and Meghan’s big day – forcing the former actress to stand her ground against her new mother-in-law.
It’s believed Camilla’s dislike of Meghan had been brewing for some months, but became worse in the week before her wedding to Harry due to the dramas with her father Thomas Markle.
‘Camilla was absolutely appalled that the royal wedding turned into an episode of Jerry Springer in the week before the big day,’ says a palace source.
‘She’s always had her reservations about Meghan marrying into the royal family, believing that she wasn’t “regal enough” for Harry and did everything she could to talk him out of going through with the wedding. So when Meghan’s dad was exposed for cashing in on his daughter’s wedding, it only strengthened her belief that Meghan didn’t belong in the palace and that her trailer-park family were bringing the whole monarchy into disrepute.
‘Camilla wasn’t backward in telling Meghan and Harry exactly how she feels. And while Harry has always stood up for Meghan and done his best to shield and protect her from Camilla’s attacks and bitterness, Meghan decided to take matters into her own hands this time and take a firm stand. So it was pretty intense to say the least.’
Insiders tell New Idea the situation escalated when Meghan’s mum Doria arrived in London for the wedding.
Jealous that her husband Charles had taken Meghan’s mum under his wing and gone to great lengths to make her feel welcome, Camilla became even more livid when the royal-to-be asked the Prince of Wales to walk her down the aisle.
‘When Camilla found out that Meghan had asked Charles to step in for her father at the church, she was absolutely furious,’ says the source. ‘She called Meghan straight away and told her she was disgusted that she’d dragged Charles into their family mess – she was very attacking in her tone and demeanour.
‘She also had some less-than-kind things to say about Meghan’s mum, annoyed that Doria and Charles had become so chummy so quickly. But Meghan wasn’t having a bar of it.
She told Camilla to back off and leave her and her mum alone. But senior palace aides say while the tension between Camilla and Meghan was ‘very intense’, they believe Meghan’s done the right thing in sticking up for herself against Camilla.
‘Power only listens to power, and Camilla has certainly backed down since Meghan made a stand,’ says the source.
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