Prince Harry and Meghan Markle make announcement on eve of Kate Middleton’s birthday

Royal fans were left reeling after the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made their announcement on the eve of the Duchess of Cambridge‘s birthday – joking it is ‘quite the present’.

Prince Harry, 35, and Meghan Markle, 38, last night announced they will be stepping back as ‘senior royals’, will split their time between the UK and North America and will walk away from Royal funds in order to become ‘financially independent.’

However some royal watchers were struck by the timing of the statement, pointing out that it came on the eve of Kate’s 38th birthday today and saying it would ‘overshadow’ the Duchess’s celebrations. 

Royal fans were left reeling after the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made their announcement just hours before the Duchess of Sussex's birthday - joking it was 'quite the present'. Pictured, Kate with Charlotte on the first day of school in September last year

Royal fans were left reeling after the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made their announcement just hours before the Duchess of Sussex's birthday - joking it was 'quite the present'. Pictured, Kate with Charlotte on the first day of school in September last year

Prince Harry, 35, and Meghan Markle, 38, last night announced they will be stepping back as 'senior royals', will split their time between the UK and North America and will walk away from Royal funds in order to become 'financially independent'

Prince Harry, 35, and Meghan Markle, 38, last night announced they will be stepping back as 'senior royals', will split their time between the UK and North America and will walk away from Royal funds in order to become 'financially independent'

Royal fans were left reeling after Harry and Meghan (right in October 2019) made their announcement just hours before Kate’s birthday (left with Charlotte in September 2019)

Royal watchers were left confused over the timing of the statement - pointing out that it came on the eve of Kate's 38th birthday today - and said it would 'overshadow' the celebrations

Royal watchers were left confused over the timing of the statement - pointing out that it came on the eve of Kate's 38th birthday today - and said it would 'overshadow' the celebrations

Royal watchers were left confused over the timing of the statement – pointing out that it came on the eve of Kate’s 38th birthday today – and said it would ‘overshadow’ the celebrations

Others were hooked by the apparent drama, with one writing: ‘THEY QUIT THE FAMILY THE NIGHT BEFORE KATE’S BIRTHDAY I AM LIVING FOR THIS.’

Another tweeted: ‘Anyhow, let’s hope Kate’s birthday isn’t at all over shadowed today,’ with a crying laughing emoji. 

Others were hooked by the apparent drama of the situation and said they 'couldn't get over it'

Others were hooked by the apparent drama of the situation and said they 'couldn't get over it'

Others were hooked by the apparent drama of the situation and said they ‘couldn’t get over it’

A third added: ‘They chose to make the announcement hit the press on Kate’s birthday! Lovely present from them to her.’

Other royal watchers flooded Twitter and Instagram with well-wishes to the Duchess. 

It is expected the official Kensington Palace account will post a birthday tribute to the Duchess at some point today. 

Harry and Meghan released this statement last night announcing their intentions to step down as senior royals

Harry and Meghan released this statement last night announcing their intentions to step down as senior royals

Harry and Meghan released this statement last night announcing their intentions to step down as senior royals

Prince Harry and Meghan unveiled a slick new website just moments after announcing they were stepping back from royal duties.

Posts on the website, sussexroyal.com, detail the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s ‘new working model’, explaining how they intend to go forward in a ‘progressive new role’ following the announcement that they are quitting the royal family.  

They listed their new media relations policy, the future of their charities and also explained how they will be funded after claiming that they want to be financially independent. 

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