Harry and Meghan’s claim that they wed in secret has been blown apart by their own marriage certificate.
In their bombshell interview with Oprah, the Duchess of Sussex claimed that the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby married her and Harry three days before their wedding.
However, the General Register Office has now revealed the couple’s wedding certificate for the first time, proving they did get married on May 19, 2018 in a lavish ceremony at Windsor Castle after all.
The official who drew up the licence says Meghan is ‘obviously confused’ and ‘clearly misinformed’ over the wedding.
Meghan claimed that the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby married her and Harry three days before their wedding
General Register Office has now revealed the couple’s wedding certificate for the first time, proving they did get married on May 19, 2018 in a lavish ceremony at Windsor Castle after all and not in private in a ceremony officiated by the Archbishop
Stephen Borton, former chief clerk at the Faculty Office, told The Sun: ‘They did not marry three days earlier in front of the Archbishop of Canterbury.
The Special Licence I helped draw up enabled them to marry at St George’s Chapel in Windsor and what happened there on 19 May 2018 and was seen by millions around the world was the official wedding as recognised by the Church of England and the law.
‘What I suspect they did was exchange some simple vows they had perhaps written themselves, and which is fashionable, and said that in front of the Archbishop — or, and more likely, it was a simple rehearsal.’
Meghan told Oprah on the show: ‘You know, three days before our wedding, we got married. No one knows that.’
She said the couple asked the Archbishop to marry them in private at Nottingham Cottage — their home in the grounds of Kensington Palace.
The account has now been dismissed by Mr Borton who said they couldn’t have gotten married in the grounds of Nottingham Cottage as it is not an authorised venue.
He added that there were not enough witnesses to make it a valid ceremony.
Mr Borton also said: ‘In order for them to be married a Special Licence was drawn up and the wording from Her Majesty the Queen authorising the wedding and the official venue was recorded.’
The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby (centre) has so far refused to comment on claims made by Meghan as he says it is a ‘private matter’ but Rev Edwards has called for clarity
Meghan told Oprah on the show: ‘You know, three days before our wedding, we got married. No one knows that’
He said that the £325 fee normally paid for couples to have a Special Licence was waived for the couple.
The wedding certificate confirmed the ceremony took place at Windsor Castle with the witnesses recorded as Prince Charles and Meghan’s mother Doria Ragland.
A spokesman for the Archbishop said he would not be commenting on personal or pastoral matters.
Rev Mark Edwards, a C of E priest from Newcastle, said: ‘When I called Lambeth Palace to ask about this I was told Justin doesn’t do private weddings. Meghan doesn’t understand.
‘But the fact that the Archbishop has not commented publicly needs to be addressed.’
It comes after the Rev Mark Edwards decided to look into Meghan’s claims.
He said he decided to do so because during the Covid outbreak he has been inundated with requests for private weddings which he has been forced to decline.
Rev Edwards, the vicar at St Matthew’s Church, in Dinnington, and St Cuthbert’s Church, in Brunswick, Newcastle upon Tyne, said he was told by a Lambeth Palace staff member that, ‘Justin does not do private weddings. Meghan is an American, she does not understand’.
He says the claim has caused confusion among clergy and couples anxious to tie the knot and is asking Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby to clarify the situation.