PRINCE Harry and Meghan Markle WONT join the Queen for her first Christmas without Prince Philip, sources claim.

The Sussexes will instead spend the holidays at their £11million California mansion with Archie, two, and five-month-old Lilibet to avoid a "media frenzy" upon their return to England, it is understood.

This year will be the first Christmas since the death of the Queen's "strength and stay" Prince Philip in April.

The Palace did invite Harry, 37, and Meghan, 40, to join them for their traditional Christmas Day festivities in Sandringham, but they are set to decline, Page Six sources understand.

One insider said: "There’s a lot that goes into the logistics and the planning of the family Christmas, so of course, staff know that Harry and Meghan are not coming.

"If they were, they would have communicated it to their family by now.

"But this is Her Majesty’s first Christmas without her husband, so one would have hoped they would want to be with her."

The Queen sparked fresh health concerns by cancelling an appearance at the Cenotaph for the first time in 22 years last weekend.

She remains on "light duties" but royal watchers are worried as she has now cancelled four public engagements in a month.

Her increasing frailty has forced her to miss the COP26 reception with world leaders in Glasgow, a two-day trip to Northern Ireland, Saturday’s annual Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall and Remembrance Sunday.

Prince Charles today said the Queen was "doing alright" when asked about her health.

Speaking during his tour of Jordan, he said: "She's alright, thank you very much.

"Once you get to 95, it's not quite as easy as it used to be. It's bad enough at 73."

Harry and Meghan have not ventured to the UK together since they ditched the country for a life across the pond last year.


But now – following the birth of their daughter Lilibet in June – royal author Adam Helliker says the brood returning to Harry's home country is "imperative for family unity".

While he doubted big events like Christmas or Lilibet's Christening were ever on the cards, he said both sides are "striving for reconciliation" following the fallout from their bombshell Oprah interview.

The Sussexes alleged there were conversations with Harry and a "family" member about their unborn son Archie and what colour his skin would be – and "what that would mean or look like".

He added: "They seem to have very fixed views about the privacy of family occasions.

"I think having the christening in the UK will be putting too much pressure on them.

"And I think Meghan will be putting her foot down and say no we don't want an international circus."

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