HARRY and Meghan’s shock TV claim that they married three days before their official ceremony has been exposed as a sham — by their own wedding certificate.
The document is shown here for the first time after being provided by the General Register Office.
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It confirms the formalities DID take place on May 19, 2018, at Windsor Castle.
The official who drew up the licence for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s wedding says Meghan is “obviously confused” over the marriage.
In a bombshell TV chat Meghan told Oprah Winfrey she and Harry tied the knot “in our backyard” three days before the lavish public wedding on May 19, 2018.
But last night — as their wedding certificate came to light for the first time — Stephen Borton dismissed the claim.
Mr Borton, former chief clerk at the Faculty Office, told HOAR: “I’m sorry, but Meghan is obviously confused and clearly misinformed.
“They did not marry three days earlier in front of the Archbishop of Canterbury.
STUNNED THE WORLD
“The Special Licence I helped draw up enabled them to marry at St George’s Chapel in Windsor and what happened there on 19 May 2018 and was seen by millions around the world was the official wedding as recognised by the Church of England and the law.
“What I suspect they did was exchange some simple vows they had perhaps written themselves, and which is fashionable, and said that in front of the Archbishop — or, and more likely, it was a simple rehearsal.”
Meghan, 39, had stunned the world by telling US talk show queen Oprah: “You know, three days before our wedding, we got married. No one knows that.
“The vows that we have framed in our room are just the two of us in our backyard with the Archbishop of Canterbury.”
She said she and Harry phoned the Archbishop, the Most Reverend Justin Welby, and asked him to marry them in private at Nottingham Cottage — their home in the grounds of Kensington Palace.
Harry, 36, chimed in: “Just the three of us.”
But Mr Borton, now a consultant for the Faculty Office, added: “They couldn’t have got married in the grounds of Nottingham Cottage as it is not an authorised venue and there were not enough witnesses present.
“You cannot be married with just three people. It’s not a valid ceremony.
“I think the Duchess is confused. Any certificate she may have of her vows on the wall is not an official wedding certificate.
“The wedding itself took place at St George’s Chapel under the conditions stipulated by the Royal Marriages Act of 1772 which have been recently amended.
“In order for them to be married a Special Licence was drawn up and the wording from Her Majesty the Queen authorising the wedding and the official venue was recorded.”
Mr Borton revealed the official £325 fee normally paid for couples to have a Special Licence was waived.
A copy of the official wedding certificate confirms the actual ceremony did take place on May 19, 2018, at Windsor.
The witnesses are recorded as Prince Charles and Meghan’s mum Doria Ragland.
It states the Sussexes were married according to the “rites and ceremonies of the Established Church” by Special Licence by “Justin Cantuar” .
This is an abbreviation of the Latin Cantuariensis, meaning Canterbury, and is the formal way the Archbishop signs himself on official documents.
The date of March 16, 2021, at the bottom, is the day before we obtained the certificate.
HOAR first contacted Windsor Register Office. They said they didn’t have the certificate and suggested we contact the General Register Office where all birth, marriage and death certificates are held.
HOAR applied online at the website of the General Register Office and gave the names of the parties, venue and the wedding date.
A fee of £42 was paid and the certificate arrived in the post.
It lists Harry as “single” and his occupation as a “Prince of the United Kingdom” and Meghan as “divorced” and an “actor”’.
Her dad Thomas Markle is described as a “lighting director” and Charles as a “Prince of the United Kingdom”.
Harry and Meghan married in front of 600 guests in a wedding estimated to have cost £32million, including security.
If what the couple told Oprah was right it follows that the Archbishop, leader of the Church of England, had not only broken the law, but then presided over a “fake” royal wedding in the presence of the Queen, who is the titular head of the Church of England.
A spokesman for the Archbishop said he would not be commenting on personal or pastoral matters.
Rev Mark Edwards, a C of E priest from Newcastle, said: “When I called Lambeth Palace to ask about this I was told Justin doesn’t do private weddings. Meghan doesn’t understand.
“But the fact that the Archbishop has not commented publicly needs to be addressed.”