Tuesday, 24 Nov 2020

Royal Family LIVE: Meghan Markle’s dad sends heartbreaking appeal – ‘I could die tomorrow’

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Meghan Markle’s request to delay her high-stakes privacy trial was approved by a High Court judge yesterday. The new trial date is being arranged for autumn 2021 but Thomas Markle, the Duchess’ father, has raised serious concerns about the adjournment.

Mr Markle has revealed he suffers from heart and lung problems and fears his health could deteriorate at any moment.

As a result, he wants the case to be “over with as quickly as possible”, and opposed his daughter’s move to delay the trial by 10-months.

Mr Markle’s comments were revealed in a statement by Elizabeth Hartley, Group Legal Director of Associated Newspapers – the publisher the Duchess is suing in the case.

He said: “This case is causing me anxiety and I want to get it over with as quickly as possible.

“I am 76 years old and as a result of my heart condition and surgery I am on blood thinners which have had an effect on my breathing.”

He added: “None of my male relatives have ever lived beyond 80 years of age.

“I am a realist and I could die tomorrow. The sooner this case takes place the better.”

Meghan is suing Associated Newspapers, publishers of the Mail on Sunday and MailOnline, for breach of privacy for publishing extracts of a letter she sent Mr Markle in 2018.

Her father was due to give evidence at the trial, which was initially scheduled to start on January 11.


7.55am update: Princess Margaret’s habits that gained her ‘Her Rude Highness’ nickname

Princess Margaret was known among royal servants for her strict rules when it came to her morning routine with one staffer labelling the royal “Her Rude Highness” due to her stern personality.

The Queen’s sister, who was a heavy smoker, required that a servant followed her around with an ashtray as she got on with her daily activities.

In the documentary Royal Servants Peter Russell, who was a palace aide between 1954 and 1968, confirmed the peculiar request.

Mr Rushell said: “Of course, at a banquet for instance or a big social occasion, it meant you had to dance attendance on her all night long.

“Possibly to be just standing to her left or right with an ashtray, so she didn’t have to look to see where she flicked her ash.”

In 2019 Channel 5 documentary “The Royal Family at War”, Princess Diana’s former butler Paul Burrell described Margaret as “rude” when she smoked.

Mr Burrell said: “She would stand there with her cigarette in her holder and blow the smoke into my face.

“I didn’t mind that but it is very rude to do that. But Margo was a certain creature, born at a certain time. You could not change her.”

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