In May 2018, Prince Harry finally wed the love of his life, Meghan Markle. As a gift to the new couple, Queen Elizabeth gave the pair the title of Duke and Duchess of Sussex, which is how they’ve been known ever since. However, if a group of locals have their way, that title will be null and void in their town.
According to reports, a council in East Sussex will soon debate on if the couple should lose their Duke and Duchess of Sussex titles while visiting the towns of Brighton and Hove.
In a public petition, the council states:
We the undersigned petition Brighton & Hove Council to reject the usage of the titles "Duke of Sussex" and "Duchess of Sussex" by the individuals Henry ("Harry") Windsor and Rachel Meghan Markle as morally wrong and disrespectful to the county of East Sussex. As residents of Brighton and Hove we call on Brighton and Hove Council to not refer to these individuals by such titles which we believe to be entirely non-democratic and symbolic of the oppression of the general public by the wealthy elite. Neither will Brighton Council invite or entertain these individuals nor afford them any hospitality or courtesies above and beyond that of an ordinary member of the public.
However, there’s an important caveat to all of this: The council cannot actually take their titles away. That can only be done by the Queen. All this petition can do is ensure they aren’t called the Duke and Duchess while visiting these towns, and instead are simply addressed by their given names.
Still, that isn’t stopping this petition from chugging along. To date, it’s been signed by 3,881 people. Though many people seem to support the measure, Elle reports it has little chance of actually passing a council vote. Others, including Thomas Mace-Archer-Mills, founder of the British Monarchists Society, are voicing their displeasure at the petition too.
"We are utterly dismayed that said petition has been signed by so many,” Mace-Archer-Mills told reporters. “Such a petition shows utter disdain and contempt for The Crown, not to mention copious amounts of disrespect to, and for, the Royal Family which undertakes thousands of engagements per year on behalf of the nation, in right of Her Majesty as The Crown."
Who knows though, maybe this is exactly what Meghan and Harry want. They have been escaping the United Kingdom for some alone time as a family rather often lately. They’re even celebrating the holidays in Los Angeles with Meghan’s mother Doria. And surely, nobody would object to them becoming the Duke and Duchess of L.A., right?