The Duchess of Sussex attended the annual Boxing Day hunt this past week with Prince Harry, Prince William, Kate Middleton, and other royal relatives (Boxing Day is celebrated in England the day after Christmas). The Daily Mail reports that the family gathered at Wood Farm, Prince Philip’s farmhouse, for a traditional feast before a group headed out to shoot.
Markle’s attendance likely came as a surprise to tabloid readers. Leading up to the holiday, rumors circulated in the British papers that Harry wouldn’t be going this year. Markle is a long-time animal rights advocate, and in the lead-up to Christmas and Boxing Day, she had reportedly asked Harry not to participate in the hunt. This mirrors rumors from last year, when Harry actually did sit out the event.
But an anonymous source told the Daily Mail that Harry’s absence last year was not at Markle’s request — he apparently had to drive to London that day. The source also said that Markle did not impose any kind of ban on this year’s event, either.
Perhaps the royals are not quite as embroiled in controversy as the tabloids might have everyone else believe. Persistent — and downright sexist — claims that Markle and Middleton are at odds have been swiftly undermined by Kensington Palace, and the two were spotted heading to Christmas mass together, all smiles. Similarly, reports of tensions between Harry and William — sparked, it seems, by Harry and Markle’s move to Windsor Castle — are tenuous at best.
Indeed, Harry and Meghan Markle’s holidays appear to have been a traditional family affair, and a new chapter awaits for the royals in the new year.