MEGHAN Markle beamed at Prince Harry as they left the Royal Wedding rehearsal today – hours after confirming her dad Thomas would not walk her down the aisle.
The US actress and Harry were earlier driven into Windsor, with the bride-to-be looking in good spirits despite having been left "tearful" over the rocky build-up to the big day.
Paul Edwards – The Sun Meghan Markle beams at her fiance following their wedding rehearsal
The smitten couple wore matching white shirts and sunglasses as they left in their Range Rover this evening.
The pair were joined by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge – the first time Kate has been seen since announcing the birth of Prince Louis.
Meghan's mum Doria Ragland, who flew in to save the day after dad Thomas Markle went back and forth on his decision to walk his daughter down the aisle, also joined for the rehearsal.
Meghan today released an emotional statement confirming her dad would not be attending the wedding on Saturday after he had heart surgery in the US.
Doria is now expected to walk Meghan down the aisle and yesterday had tea at Clarence House with Prince Charles and Camilla before reportedly meeting the Queen for tea today.
What we know so far…
- Meghan Markle today confirmed her dad would not be at her wedding as he continues to recover from major heart surgery
- Thomas Markle had earlier said he wouldn’t be attending for fear of embarrassing Meghan and the royal family over staged paparazzi photos
- The 73-year-old suffered a heart scare last week which he has reportedly blamed on an open letter by his son Tom Jr – who has since said he’s “mortified”
- Samantha Markle, Meghan’s half-sister, has slammed claims Kensington Palace is supporting their dad in hospital before she was injured in a car crash on Wednesday
- Mr Markle backed Meghan’s mum Doria Ragland to give her away in his stead
- Mum Doria is said to not be on speaking terms with her ex-husband, angry his family has been trashing Meghan
- The bride’s best friend Jessica Mulroney jetted into London Heathrow with her kids
- Kensington Palace announced Prince George and Princess Charlotte would be among the bridesmaids and page boys at the wedding
- Elton John will reportedly perform at Meghan and Harry’s wedding
London News Pictures The loved-up couple were driven out of Windsor in matching white shirts and shades WATCH LIVE: Huge crowds in Windsor as the town prepares for the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle Peter Jordan The bride-to-be was seen just hours after confirming her dad would not be coming to the wedding ©Karwai Tang Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive for wedding rehearsals today in Windsor Peter Jordan Meghan arrived in Windsor this afternoon ready for the dress rehearsal ©Karwai Tang Meghan smiled as she and Harry were driven to Windsor this afternoon SIMPSON / BUSHELL The Queen looks rather solemn-faced as she leaves London this afternoon bound for Windsor Castle in readiness for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding London News Pictures Prince Harry cracks a smile as the pair leave Windsor Castle this afternoon
The Royal Wedding plans were thrown into chaos when 73-year-old Thomas Sr announced he wouldn't be attending – after being left embarrassed over staged paparazzi photos.
While Meghan reportedly begged her father to attend – saying she still loved him – her reclusive dad eventually pulled out.
Confirming the news today, Meghan's emotionally charged-statement over the fiasco said: "Sadly my father will not be attending our wedding.
"I have always cared for my father and hope he can be given the space he needs to focus on his health.
"I would like to thank everyone who has offered generous messages of support.
"Please know how much Harry and I look forward to sharing our special day with you on Saturday."
Flynet Pictures Prince William and Kate were seen driving out of Kensington Palace today ahead of the Royal Wedding Peter Jordan Prince Charles and Camilla leave Kensington Palace by helicopter The Mega Agency Doria, who was pictured leaving her home in LA earlier this week, will meet the Queen for tea Peter Jordan Kate and William, who welcomed their third child Louis this year, were also seen heading to the rehearsal Meghan Markle confirms dad Thomas will NOT be at Royal Wedding
Pals flew into the UK to support Meghan, with best friend Jessica Mulroney arriving this week.
The Canadian socialite's children are among who will be bridesmaids and page boys during the ceremony.
But Meghan's estranged family members – including her nephews and sister-in-law – also landed in the UK despite not being invited to the wedding.
The Mega Agency Thomas Markle is expected to continue to recover from heart surgery over the next few days Rehearsals in Windsor ahead of the Royal Wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle TMZ reporter Sean Mandell says that Meghan Markle was left in tears over dad controversy AP:Associated Press Meghan Markle released a statement today, saying her dad could not make it to the wedding Splash News Thomas Markle Sr with a young Meghan Getty – Contributor Meghan might walk down the aisle with her mum Doria
Meghan has endured constant criticism from her family who claim she has not supported her dad – including from outspoken half-sister Samantha Markle.
Samantha lashed out overnight, saying she had even been forced to wire Thomas Sr cash to survive.
She has previously taken the blame for the staged paparazzi shots, which Meghan's dad later described as "hammy" and "stupid".
Earlier today, a journalist for US website TMZ – which has published a number of exclusive interviews with Thomas Sr this week – said the bride's father had been hopeful of attending but would be prevented by ill-health.
Meghan Markle’s family – from dad Thomas and half-sister Samantha Grant to the nephews �2018 Stephen Lock / i-Images The royal carriage is pulled through the streets of Windsor during the rehearsal for the big day AP:Associated Press Crowds gathered to watch the run-through of the procession which will follow the wedding Damir Sagolj Military personnel rehearse their part in the procession for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's wedding
Reporter Sean Mandell, who spoke to Thomas Sr after his operation yesterday, also revealed Meghan's heartache her father could not attend.
Speaking on Good Morning Britain, he said: "She is holding up, from what I've been told.
"It has been a tearful, at times, and a trying time for her."
He added: "I do get the sense that he does want to be reunited with Meghan, because he told us that he wanted to be there.
"He had a change of heart on Tuesday of this week actually, that after speaking with Meghan over text that he felt that he had prematurely maybe made the decision to pull out of the wedding."
Thomas Sr has previously blamed his health woes on his son Thomas Markle Jr over an open letter he wrote to Prince Harry – branding the wedding as a "fake fairy tale".
He has since has backtracked on his claims – saying his sister was the "best thing to happen to the royals".
Thomas' absence means Doria will be the only direct family member of Meghan's at the wedding.
REUTERS The household cavalry during the dress rehearsal for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle REUTERS Rehearsals for the wedding of the year have already begun Jon Bond – The Sun Meghan and Harry mania is already sweeping Britain BPM Media Masks are already up for sale to celebrate the big day BPM Media Posters and signs celebrating the wedding are decorating Windsor TMZ reporter Sean Mandell reveals Meghan Markle's dad will be in hospital for 'another few days' Coleman-Rayner Thomas was caught posing for snaps which sold for £100k Coleman-Rayner Photographs showed Meghan's dad exercising before the big day Coleman-Rayner The father-of-the-bride was also photographed being fitted for a suit – with it later revealed as being staged
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