Harry praised for ‘unstinting support’ as patron of London Marathon Charitable Trust

PA Reporters

The London Marathon Charitable Trust has hailed the Duke of Sussex for his “unstinting support” during his nine years as patron.

The role, which was on a three-year term and was renewed twice, came to an end in January, and it was decided it would not be renewed.

Harry and Meghan were stripped of their remaining patronages as the couple confirmed Megxit was permanent last week.

Sir Rodney Walker, chairman of The London Marathon Charitable Trust, said the duke had been a “wonderful” patron since 2012, adding: “We are immensely grateful for his unstinting support and interest in our work over the past nine years.

“Everyone at the trust and the wider London Marathon family sends our best wishes and thanks to the duke for all that he has done for the trust.”

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry cheers on runners as they hand out water to runners during the 2017 Virgin Money London Marathon (Chris Jackson/PA)
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry cheers on runners as they hand out water to runners during the 2017 Virgin Money London Marathon (Chris Jackson/PA)

During his time as patron, Harry was a regular presence at the London Marathon, presenting prizes to the winners of both the elite races and the mini marathon races as well as meeting runners, volunteers and staff.

He was also one of the official starters of the 2017 marathon, alongside the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, when the Royal Foundation’s Heads Together campaign was the event’s Charity of the Year.

In his final year, the duke recorded a video message to wish runners good luck ahead of the first ever virtual London Marathon.

Harry and Meghan quit as senior working royals in March 2020 and it was confirmed last week that they would not be returning as working members of the royal family.

The couple were informed they would have to relinquish their remaining formal roles with the military, arts, Commonwealth and sporting organisations after talks with the Queen and senior royals.

Harry, a former Army officer with a passion for the military family, will lose his roles as Captain General of the Royal Marines, Honorary Air Force Commandant of the Royal Air Force Base Honington, and Honorary Commodore-in-Chief of the Royal Naval Commands’ Small Ships and Diving.

The duke will no longer be patron of the Rugby Football Union and the Rugby Football League, roles which he took over from the Queen, and he has also had to relinquish his role as president of The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust.

The duchess, a former actress in the hit US-drama Suits, has lost her patronages of the prestigious Royal National Theatre and the Association of Commonwealth Universities, and also has to give up her role as vice-president of The Queen’s Commonwealth Trust.