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Rediff.com  » News » Prince Harry and Meghan step out for first joint royal event

Prince Harry and Meghan step out for first joint royal event

December 01, 2017 20:17 IST

Britain’s Prince Harry on Friday made his first joint royal visit with fiance Meghan Markle to mark the World AIDS Day in the city of Nottingham.

IMAGE: The newly-engaged couple received a rapturous welcome in Nottingham as they began their public life together. Photograph: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

The first official tour as a couple since the fifth in line to Britain’s throne announced his engagement to the 36-year-old American actress earlier this week was greeted by large crowds who cheered the royals.

The couple will spend the day at a World AIDS Day charity fair organised by the Terrence Higgins Trust and then meet Headteachers of a local school, Nottingham Academy.

 

“Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are in Nottingham for their first official visit together since announcing their engagement,” Kensington Palace said in a statement on Friday.

IMAGE: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle receive gifts from members of the public as they visit Nottingham Contemporary. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Prince Harry, 33, has spent time in Nottingham both publicly and privately since he first met young people there in 2013, when he was exploring issues around youth violence.

A year later, he established the Full Effect programme, which aims to stop youth violence in the city in the Midlands region of England.

The prince’s communication’s secretary, Jason Knauf, said the prince was looking forward to introducing his 36-year-old bride-to-be to a community that had “become very special to him”.

IMAGE: The couple were all smiles as they took applause from well-wishers who chanted their name in Nottingham. Photograph: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

He added that Markle, best known for her role as Rachel Zane in the legal drama ‘Suits’, “could not wait” to meet people she had heard so much about.

The couple are due for a May 2018 wedding in Windsor Castle. The exact date is yet to be announced.

IMAGE: The couple spent around 30 minutes speaking to crowds during which it was plain to see that Meghan coped well with the limelight. Photograph: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

In the lead up to the wedding, Markle would not be continuing her work as an actress or on gender with the United Nations and other organisations and instead would start new charity work as a full-time royal. She plans to focus her attention on the UK and Commonwealth.

“This is the country that’s going to be her home now and that means travelling around, getting to know the towns and cities and smaller communities,” their spokesperson said.

IMAGE: Meghan shakes the hand of a child as she departs Nottingham Contemporary. Photograph: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

She will also become the fourth patron of the Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.

The foundation is behind Prince Harry’s Invictus Games - the Paralympic-style competition for injured servicemen and women and veterans - and also the mental health charity Heads Together.

IMAGE: People scramble to take a picture of Miss Markle on their smartphones as she meets the public. Photograph: Jeremy Selwyn/WPA Pool/Getty Images

It has also been announced that Markle intends to become a British citizen and will work towards it in the coming years.

Aditi Khanna
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