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Duchess Meghan's first royal patronage revealed early in online blunder

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Fiona Ward

The Duchess of Sussex's first-ever royal patronage has been revealed – by accident! Her role at the National Theatre, which had been expected to be her first patronage, was shared a day early by the organisation – in a post in the 'what's on' section on the venue's website. The official announcement was expected to be made on Thursday. A screenshot taken by The Telegraph on January 9 shows a photograph of a smiling Meghan above a message, dated January 10, which said: "The Duchess of Sussex announced as our new Royal Patron."

Meghan's new patronage was revealed a day early

It's no surprise that the Queen decided to pass on her patronage of The National Theatre, given the Duchess' former career as an actress. Meghan is said to have met privately with the organisation's director, Rufus Norris, last month to discuss her new role.

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One of her responsibilities could be to help strengthen connections between the National Theatre and its American benefactors. She may also be involved with The American Associates of the National Theatre – a New York-based charity that supports the organisation. Kensington Palace have not yet confirmed the role.

As a former actress, Meghan's role at the theatre was expected

The news comes nine months after Harry and Meghan's royal wedding – a common amount of time to wait before announcing patronages. Her sister-in-law Kate also waited roughly nine months before announcing hers.

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During that time, Meghan, 37, had private meetings and discussions with different charities and organisations. She previously met with the Association of Commonwealth Universities and the Campaign for Female Education, which supports marginalised girls in Africa. Meghan was also concentrating on her role as the fourth patron of the Royal Foundation, alongside Prince Harry, Prince William and Kate. Her other patronages - alongside the National Theatre - are expected to be announced on Thursday. The pregnant Duchess is due in spring but she reportedly plans to visit each cause before taking maternity leave.

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