Prince Harry and Meghan Markle surprised royal fans this week when they announced that the identities of baby Archie's godparents would be kept secret. The couple have opted to keep their son's christening on Saturday as private as possible, inviting less than 25 guests and banning members of the press from taking photographs. But despite their wishes, it's possible the names of the godparents could emerge in due course. The Church of England rules that details of all baptisms, including the godparents, are a matter of public record, and can be accessed by anyone who is prepared to pay a fee. However, it's unclear whether the same rules will apply in this case; because the building is a private royal chapel, the Queen is able to make the final decision - known as a 'royal peculiar' - and as such, the documentation may remain private.
Baby Archie will be christened at Windsor Castle on Saturday
Details of Archie's birth were revealed in much the same way. Harry and Meghan decided not to make their son's birth certificate available through the palace, and as such did not disclose any details of his arrival, including the place of his birth. However, the certificate became a public document in line with all others in the UK, showing that Archie was born in the private Portland hospital.
Little Archie is due to be christened on Saturday, two months after his arrival. In a statement this week, Buckingham Palace confirmed: "Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor will be christened in a small private ceremony by the Archbishop of Canterbury in the Private Chapel at Windsor Castle on Saturday 6th July. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex look forward to sharing some images taken on the day by photographer Chris Allerton. The godparents, in keeping with their wishes, will remain private."
Prince Harry and Meghan had hoped to keep the identities of his godparents a secret
The intimate christening, which will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, is set to take place in the private chapel inside Windsor Castle, rather than at St George's Chapel, where Harry and Meghan were married last year, and where Harry himself was christened in 1984. Archie's proud grandfather Prince Charles and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, will be among the guests, alongside Prince William and Duchess Kate, and Meghan's mother Doria Ragland. Archie’s great-grandmother the Queen is unable to attend because of a prior commitment. Her busy schedule meant she also missed the christening of Archie's cousin Prince Louis last year.
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