The Royal Family Might Face A Challenging Situation If Prince Harry’s Invictus Games Returns To The UK For The First Time Since His Relocation With Meghan

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The Royal Family Might Face A Challenging Situation If Prince Harry's Invictus Games Returns To The UK For The First Time Since His Relocation With Meghan

The potential return of Prince Harry’s Invictus Games to the UK for the first time since its inception raises intriguing questions.

Chief among them is whether it would prompt both the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to return to their former home, possibly accompanied by their two children.

Additionally, it’s crucial to consider whether senior members of the Royal family would lend their support to the event, as they did in 2014 when Prince Charles, the Duchess of Cornwall, and Prince William attended the opening ceremony alongside Prince Harry.

Back then, the Duke was a fully committed, full-time working member of the royal family, and any family tensions were resolved privately. Since then, Invictus has evolved into a successful global event, involving 22 countries and over 500 athletes. Despite its growing international significance, the Royal family has refrained from public comments on the event in recent years, a fact noted by Team Sussex.

For the Duke and Duchess, the prospect of the Games returning to the UK presents conflicting emotions. It has become one of their most prominent joint appearances on the world stage, showcasing their commitment to helping others.

For Harry, it’s a deeply personal project—a lasting legacy from his time as a working royal, of which he is immensely proud. Yet, the issue of security in the UK has become a contentious issue. The Duke recently lost a legal battle over the withdrawal of his state-funded police protection, and until the ruling is overturned, he cannot rely on such security measures and must utilize his private protection team.

While plans are in place for him to attend a service at St Paul’s Cathedral in May marking the 10th anniversary of the Invictus Games, he is likely to travel alone due to security concerns. As for whether other members of the Royal family would publicly support the Games on UK soil, it remains uncertain. Currently, senior royals are preoccupied with more pressing matters, particularly with both the King and the Princess of Wales undergoing cancer treatment.

Palace sources have previously emphasized that senior royals do not involve themselves in each other’s professional endeavors. However, if the week-long celebration of resilience and triumph were to be held in the UK without support from senior royals, it would be perceived as lacking in generosity. The Prince and Princess were instrumental in the early success of the Invictus Games, with their Royal Foundation contributing significant funds to the event.

At the time, a courtier was quoted as saying: “Prince William and Catherine always supported Harry’s efforts to establish Invictus. They are delighted that it has been a success.”

Given the current tensions, it seems improbable that either would accompany Harry and Meghan in the stands over the next three years. A possible compromise could involve sporty royals like Zara and Mike Tindall, who participated in the inaugural games in London in 2014 by joining Harry in a wheelchair rugby match.

At present, members of the Royal family on both sides of the Atlantic must await the announcement of the winning bid later this year. However, before that, the UK must secure victory against stiff competition from Washington DC, a formidable contender. The government has thrown its support behind the plan, allocating £26 million in the recent Budget to kickstart the bid.

Birmingham City Council, which faced financial difficulties last year, will not contribute financially, necessitating government-led funding supplemented by private sector sponsors.

To attract funding, Johnny Mercer, the veterans minister, co-hosted a symposium in the city in March, seeking support from up to 10 founding partners willing to contribute £350,000 annually for the next three years leading up to the Games. Additional partners are expected to join as official supporters, associates, and suppliers. Revenue will also be generated from broadcasting rights, benefactors, ticket sales, and merchandise.

Potential investors such as BAE Systems, Deloitte, PWC, and Boeing convened at the NEC on Thursday, where Mr. Mercer emphasized the significance of hosting such an event in the UK as part of his mission to make the UK the best country in the world for military veterans.

 “Perhaps the greatest part of this global veterans leadership has always been Invictus,” he said. “The power of sport to transform the lives of those injured by service in body and mind is unrivalled.

“The vision the Duke of Sussex had to see that a decade ago had almost single-handedly transformed the lives of thousands of veterans, not only in the UK but globally, with up to 22 nations now involved in this incredible legacy. So yes, I want the Games.

“I want the Games because you actually have to be there to feel that incredible transformative power of the Invictus Games in these people’s lives being built.”

Mr. Mercer emphasized that the “superhuman” competitors of the Invictus Games exemplify the values of self-sacrifice and resilience that are often lacking in other sectors of global society.

Aiden Day, chairman of the sports marketing agency ISG Live, encouraged potential investors to contribute to an “ambitious” four-year legacy program aimed at providing long-term benefits to the broader disabled community and facilitating greater participation in adaptive sports for injured military personnel within their communities.

Former Marine Commando JJ Chalmers, a close associate of the Duke and an Invictus gold medalist who sustained life-altering injuries in a bomb blast in Afghanistan, also echoed the call for support from the private sector.

 “There are so many things that you could be investing in, so many assets, but most importantly you’re investing in people,” he said. “The Invictus community is made up of those who served and wish to continue to serve.”

If the bid is successful, the Games will take place at the NEC, where hundreds of competitors and their families from 22 countries will converge, providing a huge boost to local tourism.

The city’s central location and its Alexander Stadium, redeveloped for the 2022 Commonwealth Games, are in its favour.

The work undertaken at Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital, home to the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, and its strong links with the Armed Forces, are also considered key.

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A young person with a passion for success and excellence to develop a professional career that encourages empowerment in the overall development of a person which is achieved through hard work. A Journalist with facts and a difference; standing by the truth all the time with interests in Science & Technology, Health, Celebrities' Lifestyle, Crimes, Education and Career Improvement.

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