Sophie Wessex Speaks Out About Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Stepping Back From Their Royal Roles

“I just hope they will be happy.”

meghan markle sophie wessex
(Image credit: Karwai Tang)

When Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, and Prince Andrew all stepped back from their positions as working royals in rapid succession (albeit for very different reasons), a spotlight was put on Sophie, Countess of Wessex.

In this new slimmed-down monarchy, the Queen's daughter-in-law and close confident (opens in new tab) holds a more prominent role. And now, a wide-ranging profile published in the Times (opens in new tab) over the weekend, puts her work in focus. 

The piece highlighted the Duchess's recent trip to South Sudan, and the work she does campaigning against sexual violence in conflict. It also questioned whether she's being asked to do more, given that there are new fewer working royals now than there were even just a few months ago.

“We’ve all got our own little portfolios. I don’t see anything changing, but if we’re asked to do more … I don’t know because it hasn’t really happened,” she told journalist Christina Lamb, noting that her schedule is pretty fully booked, and was so even before Harry, Meghan, and Andrew effectively resigned their public duties.

the royal family pay tribute to nurses across the commonwealth

'In May, the royals, including Sophie, paid tribute to nurses across the Commonwealth.'

(Image credit: Chris Jackson)

“I am pretty busy already, so I’m not sure how much more I can do,” she said. “There are only so many hours in the day. People may pay more attention to what I am doing, but I remain as busy as I have ever been.”

She also spoke about identifying as a feminist: “Now there’s a question. I suppose I probably am. I believe in equality for everyone.”

But when it came to addressing her family members who recently left the fold, so to speak, she did so briefly, declining to comment about Prince Andrew's friendship with Jeffrey Epstein, and the allegations he faces (and continues to deny) from Virginia Roberts-Giuffre.

“I can’t comment on that,” she said. “I am sorry. You can understand I can’t respond.”

She was more positive, if no less succinct, in talking about Harry and Meghan.

“I just hope they will be happy,” she said.

Read the full profile, here. (opens in new tab)

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As the digital news director for Town & Country, Caroline Hallemann covers everything from the British royal family to the latest episodes of Outlander, Killing Eve, and The Crown.