Life is very different for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle now compared to when they married on this day six years ago in a lavish ceremony in Windsor – and one royal expert believes their latest moves have surprised everyone

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have set up a new ‘non-royal’ family after abandoning the Firm – despite still “flaunting their titles”, an expert has claimed.

The couple were granted their Duke and Duchess of Sussex titles on this day six years ago when they married in a lavish ceremony at Windsor Castle. Back then, many were excited to see the modern touch the dazzling couple would bring to the monarchy. However, just over a year later, they sensationally quit their royal roles for a life in California with their children. Just last week, the Sussexes embarked on a ‘non royal tour’ to Nigeria, where they received a glowing reception.

MEghan Markle and Prince Harry
The couple on a visit in Nigeria 
AFP via Getty Images)And according to royal expert and historian Dr Tessa Dunlop, six years on from their Windsor wedding, the “Harry and Meghan train is still gathering speed”. She told the Mirror: ” Never underestimate the power of love. No pending seven-year itch for them. They are too busy making new friends on royal (or rather non-royal) tours of Africa, enjoying pop-up appearances in St Pauls and at polo matches and hosting press conferences on subjects close to their hearts.

“Despite the best efforts of the naysayers, their marriage looks rock solid. Harry has a new Californian glow, and Meghan, ever the actress, is never far from his arm, the adoring wife of a dashing Duke.

“The couple’s latest trip to Nigeria played to both their strengths, this was a team effort and we all know that marriage works best when both sides feel seen. Harry, ever the prince, glad-handed excited well-wishers and talked up the power of sport while Meghan, chic in African accessories, owned her ‘role model status and referred to Nigeria as ‘my country’. The Duke and Duchess were a smash-hit.

This weekend, the couple will mark six years since they said 'I do'
This weekend, the couple will mark six years since they said ‘I do’ 
AFP via Getty Images)
“Wayback when in 2020, ‘half-in, half-out’ was the Sussexes’ request. ‘No way’ came the royal retort, so Harry and Meghan turned on their heels and left. By abandoning the British Royal Family, they bound themselves ever tighter to each other. Many predicted this co-dependence would be their downfall, which the Sussex brand would not sustain. How wrong they were.

“Miles from home, minus all that is familiar, Harry needs a turbo-charged Meghan by his side, and likewise Meghan, once upon a time a bit-part actress, has entered a new realm courtesy of her prince. Together they are stronger than the sum of their parts and they know it. It helps that beneath the choreography and posing there still appears to be a real spark.”

Meanwhile, Tessa admits that for some in the UK, it might be a bittersweet pill to swallow to see the Sussexes enjoying success – but ultimately, their royal status cannot be taken away.

She explained: “From a British point of view, this all feels somewhat bittersweet. After all, the Sussexes flaunt British titles, and their blockbuster wedding (including security), was in large part funded by us, the British taxpayer. Yet as they trip around the world, the new ‘non-royal’ family, they are very much their own entity, no one is flying a Union flag. Ultimately that is their prerogative.

“Once a prince, always a prince, no one can take Harry’s royal status away from him, nor can we deny the fairytale aspect of their romance. Like it or not, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are proof that true love can blossom outside palace walls.”