“His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales is delighted to announce the engagement of Prince Harry to Ms. Meghan Markle,” Clarence House said in a statement on behalf of Harry’s father, Prince Charles. “The wedding will take place in Spring 2018. Further details about the wedding day will be announced in due course.”
“His Royal Highness and Ms. Markle became engaged in London earlier this month,” the statement continued. “Prince Harry has informed Her Majesty The Queen and other close members of his family. Prince Harry has also sought and received the blessing of Ms. Markle’s parents. The couple will live in Nottingham Cottage in Kensington Palace.”
Kensington Palace tweeted that the couple will appear for a photo call on Monday afternoon, followed by a broadcast interview to air in the U.K. in the evening.
Prince William and Duchess Kate issued the following statement: “We are very excited for Harry and Meghan. It has been wonderful getting to know Meghan and to see how happy she and Harry are together.”
Markle’s parents also released a statement via Kensington Palace. “We are incredibly happy for Meghan and Harry,” Thomas Markle and Doria Ragland said. “Our daughter has always been a kind and loving person. To see her union with Harry, who shares the same qualities, is a source of great joy for us as parents. We wish them a lifetime of happiness and are very excited for their future together.”
Harry, 33, and Markle, 36, met in London in July 2016, though Kensington Palace didn’t confirm their relationship until that November in a statement condemning the media for harassing the Suits actress. “We were very quietly dating for about six months before it became news,” she explained in her October 2017 cover story for Vanity Fair.
The couple made their first official joint appearance in September at the 2017 Invictus Games in Toronto, where they were spotted holding hands, kissing and spending time with her mother. “Harry first met Doria last summer when he visited Los Angeles with Meghan,” a source exclusively told Us. “They got on really well and he’s done his best to protect her from media intrusion as he has Meghan.”
Friends close to the pair had been speculating about an engagement prior to the official announcement. “I think it’s already happened but they’re holding the news back until she has finished on Suits,” one pal recently told Us. “I’ve never seen them happier. It’s amazing.”
One thing was clear amid the rumors: the Los Angeles native is head over heels. “We’re a couple. We’re in love,” she gushed to Vanity Fair. “I’m sure there will be a time when we will have to come forward and present ourselves and have stories to tell, but I hope what people will understand is that this is our time. This is for us. It’s part of what makes it so special, that it’s just ours. But we’re happy. Personally, I love a great love story.”
Markle, who moved to London in early November after wrapping up her seventh and final season of Suits, was previously married to actor Trevor Engelson from 2011 to 2013.