Prince Harry and Meghan Markle: Timeline of Their Relationship
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle met on a blind date in London through a mutual friend in July 2016. That's when their relationship began. By October 30, the public suspected the 33-year-old prince and the 36-year-old actress were dating.
On November 8, Kensington Palace confirms that they were indeed dating and the press began following and harassing Meghan. The British royal family's communications secretary released an official statement that addressed the harassment directed toward Markle.
Markle was spotted in London a few days later on November 11. This was her first stay at Kensington Palace since the relationship was made public.
The new year was a busy one for Meghan. She met Duchess of Cambridge and Princess Charlotte for the first time on January 10, 2017. During the year, she met other members of the royal family.
On September 5, Markle was on the cover of Vanity Fair magazine. She spoke openly for the first time about her relationship with Prince Harry. She revealed that they were really happy and in love. She confessed in the article that they had been secretly dating for about six months before it became public.
Invictus Games in Toronto
Markle is seen for the first time on September 24 with Prince Harry who hosted the Invictus Games in Toronto, Canada where the actress lives while shooting the legal drama series, Suits. They did not sit together during the opening ceremony, but they did sit together after that event.
The prince took his girlfriend to meet his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, on October 19. They had afternoon tea at Buckingham Palace. That was a good thing because Harry needed the queen's permission to marry Meghan.
Just a few days later on October 22, Harry's aides started to plan for a royal wedding. Senior members of the royal family were asked to check their calendars for a suitable date in 2018.
Markle is spotted in London on November 21, and people suspected that the couple was already engaged.
Engagement Was Announced
The date finally arrived on November 27 when Clarence House and Kensington Palace both announced the engagement. Queen Elizabeth and Duke of Edinburgh said they were delighted for the couple and wished them every happiness.
Since then, news came out about the engagement ring that was made by Cleave & Co and consists of two diamonds from the jewelry collection of Diana, Princess of Wales. Harry selected the large middle stone from Botswana, a place that means a lot to the couple.
In their televised engagement interview, Meghan told how Harry proposed to her. She said they were having a quiet night at home roasting chicken when the Prince got down on one knee, and she said, "Yes" before he finished asking her to marry him.
Meghan retired from acting after she completed the seventh season of Suits in late November. She moved from Toronto to London and made her first public appearance as Prince Harry's financée on December 1 at an event for World AIDS Day in Nottingham.
The couple was invited to celebrate Christmas 2017 with the royal family at the Queen's Sandringham estate. Meghan was the first unmarried commoner to get the invitation.
In January 2018, Markle deleted all her social media accounts. She thanked those who had followed her on social media over the years.
She made a number of royal appearances with Harry while they both were also focusing on planning their upcoming wedding. On February 28, Markle made her first joint official engagement with Prince Harry, Prince William and Duchess of Cambridge at the first annual forum of the Royal Foundation, "Making a Difference Together."
After their marriage, Prince Harry and Meghan are expected to join William and Kate on many other occasions as they will all do charity work together.
St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle
After the engagement was announced, Markle began the long process of becoming a British citizen. She has been baptized and confirmed into the Church of England to honor Queen Elizabeth who is the head of the Church of England. She has completed two days of intense security training so she will know how to protect herself in case of a kidnapping.
The royal wedding is expected to cost around half a million pounds that the royal family will pay. The wedding day is not a bank holiday since it is on a Saturday which does not follow the royal tradition of having weddings on a weekday.
Invitations have been sent to 2,640 commoners to be on the grounds of Windsor Castle to see the guests as they enter and exit the sanctuary that holds only 800 people.
After the ceremony, a carriage procession through Windsor will take place before the two receptions. The first reception will take place in St. George's Hall after the carriage procession. The second reception hosted later in the day by Prince Charles will be for family members and close friends.
Before the wedding takes place, Lifetime TV network is releasing the film Harry & Meghan: The Royal Love Story. It is a story about the timeline of the couple's relationship that will air on May 13, 2018 at 8 p.m.