Meghan Markle has revealed she’s ‘reconnected’ with her niece Ashleigh after the Palace advised her not to invite her half-sister’s daughter to her wedding in 2018.
In the final episode of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s six-part Netflix docu-series, the mother-of-two explained how she reached out to her relationship again at the end of 2021.
Never-before-seen footage shows Meghan’s niece arriving at the Duke and Duchess’ Montecito mansion and enjoying some quality time with their two young children, Archie and Lilibet.
The first clip shows Ashleigh Hale – who is the daughter of Meghan’s estranged half-sister Samantha Markle – giving her aunt a kiss on the cheek before cuddling Lilibet.
Meghan Markle revealed she’s ‘reconnected’ with her niece Ashleigh in her new Netflix documentary. Pictured: an undated photo of Meghan and Ashleigh before the Suits actress married Prince Harry
Meghan said: ‘I texted her and she was immediately just happy to be reconnected.’
The docu-series then jumps to another clip of Ashleigh helping Archie to make some zucchini muffins in the couple’s kitchen.
Speaking to camera, Ashleigh says: ‘I missed so much of Archie’s life but I don’t necessarily feel like it.
‘I feel like we immediately had this bond. To experience them growing up and to feel like I’m in their life for that has been really good.’
Another clip shows Ashleigh helping Archie to make courgette muffins in the kitchen of their Montecito home
Ashleigh pictured watching over Lilibet next to the couple’s Christmas tree
After showing a photo of Ashleigh watching over Lilibet next to the couples Christmas tree, the documentary then plays a video of Meghan and her niece picking some tomatoes with the two children.
Meghan then said: ‘Part of what is beautiful here is the freedom to have family moments out in the world.
‘I want our kids to be able to do that and be able to travel and to fall in love. I just want them to be happy.’
Earlier on in the episode, Meghan explained how a friend challenges her every New Years Eve to find a word that will set the tone of the upcoming 12 months.
A never-before-seen clip shows Ashleigh arriving at the couple’s Montecito home
The Duchess also shared footage of her picking tomatoes with her children in the garden
Meghan shared footage of her practicing yoga in the Netflix documentary
In 2021, Meghan picked the word ‘peace’ for herself – which prompted her to reach out to her niece again.
As footage of the Duchess doing yoga plays, Meghan is heard saying: ‘Part of [peace for me] is reclaiming.
‘When you’ve lost a huge piece of yourself, getting that back includes getting back those relationships and friendships and things that anchor you in who you are. Ashleigh was a huge part of that for me.’
In the first episodes of the series, the Duchess of Sussex describes a ‘painful’ conversation with Ashleigh Hale, daughter of her estranged half-sister Samantha, after advice from the palace.
She says: ‘The guidance at the time was to not have her [Ashleigh] come to our wedding. I was in the car with H, I called her… and we talked her through what guidance we were being given.’
Viewers are led to believe that because Samantha wasn’t invited, it was suggested an invitation should not be extended to Ashleigh.
A tearful Ashleigh then appears on camera saying: ‘Communication with Meg became less and less frequent… my impression was that her relationships were being managed.’
Speaking to the Mail on Sunday, a palace insider strongly denied that staff tried to stop Meghan communicating with Ashleigh.
The first three episodes of Harry & Meghan – part of the Sussexes’ multi-million-dollar deal with Netflix – were streamed last week, with the final three hour-long episodes streaming from today.
The Sussexes’ six-part show – which forms part of their multimillion-pound deal with Netflix – has become the streaming giant’s most-watched documentary in a premier week, debuting with 81.55 million hours viewed.
The initial tranche covered the couple’s courtship and romance, but many were left deeply unhappy about the programme’s full-on assault on the late Queen’s Commonwealth legacy, with some saying it seemed as if the couple want to ‘bring down the monarchy’.
Ashleigh Hale (left) is the daughter of Meghan’s estranged half-sister Samantha Markle (right)
Meghan pictured on a hike with Ashleigh before marrying into the Royal Family
Meghan Markle pictured in tears as she has a guided meditation session with Prince Harry
Harry also made digs at his family, particularly his father and brother, including the suggestion that they had married not for love but to a woman who fitted ‘the mould’.
The duke also said members of his family questioned why Meghan needed more protection from the media than their wives had been given, but that they failed to grasp the ‘race element’.
The claims made in the trailer yesterday were quickly declared by royal experts as ‘nonsense’, while one commentator said the series was clearly a ‘form of revenge’.
In one clip, Meghan’s British privacy lawyer Jenny Afia insisted she had seen evidence of the conspiracy against the Duchess before Lucy Fraser – real name Lucy Meadmore – a former PR manager who was a mystery figure until a week ago, says ‘Meg became this scapegoat for the Palace’.
The Duchess herself also suggested she was made a scapegoat, adding: ‘You would see it play out. A story about someone in the family would pop up for a minute, and they’d go: ‘We’ve got to make that go away’.’
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