Prince Harry leaving official duty means door open for Lady Louise on cusp of adulthood

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Harry, 37, is expected to give up his position as Counsellor of State, a position he still has after the Duke and Duchess’s renunciation of official royal duties in 2020. The position involves a commitment to representing the Queen at royal engagements if Her Majesty is unable to attend.

Currently, Harry occupies this role, alongside Prince Charles, Prince William and Prince Andrew.

Lady Louise Windsor, who turns 18 on Monday, may step into his shoes with this responsibility amid speculation surrounding an imminent decision: whether to adopt an HRH title.

The oldest child of Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex, Lady Louise is rumoured to be the Queen’s favourite grandchild.

Edward, the Queen’s youngest son, and Sophie had preferred to style their children, Lady Louise and James, Viscount Severn, 13, as offspring of an earl, rather than bestow on titles of Prince and Princess.

Royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams told Express.co.uk: “Her parents, who have brought up her and her brother James, Viscount Severn, in as normal a way as possible, have intimated that she will choose a career of her own and that she will not use the HRH title she is entitled to use as a child of the son of the sovereign.”

Royal expert Marlene Koenig was stronger in her scepticism of Louise becoming a princess.

She suggests the final word rests in the Queen’s hands – even if Louise would like the title.

She told Express.co.uk: “It is not her decision. Not her choice.

“There is no precedent for this.

“Yes, she should be styled as HRH Princess Louise of Wessex, but when Edward and Sophie married, an official announcement was made that the Queen decided and Edward and Sophie agreed that their children would be styled as children of an earl.”

In 1999, following Edward and Sophie’s wedding, Buckingham Palace bestowed the Earl and Countess titles on the royal couple.

In a statement, the Palace outlined: “The Queen has also decided, with the agreement of Prince Edward and Miss Rhys-Jones, that any children they might have should not be given the style His or Her Royal Highness, but would have courtesy titles as sons or daughters of an Earl.”

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If she is able and willing to adopt the HRH title, this could signal a more public and prominent role for Louise within the Royal Family.

However, her mother, Sophie, Countess of Wessex, has expressed doubt over whether the HRH title is something her daughter would seek.

She revealed in an interview with the Sunday Times: “They have them [HRH titles] and can decide to use them after 18, but I think it is very unlikely.”

Louise, who is in her final year of study at exclusive single-sex boarding school, St Mary’s Ascot, in Berkshire, has courted little media attention but has a comfortable position within the royal family as a non-working member.

However, a royal source has Louise is “already getting media training and self-defence classes,” and that she “is the sort of kid who can impress adults and get down on a child’s level, all within the same space.”

Such skills would prove useful for Lady Louise if she chose to take on more official duties as a working member of the Royal Family.

The departure of Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex may offer the young royal an opportunity to showcase what she has to offer to the Firm.

Backlash has increased around the continued use of the Duchess of Sussex title by Meghan, and there have been few signs of a rapport or reconciliation from across the pond in California.

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