MEGHAN Markle has turned down an invite to the Coronation.
Prince Harry will attend but she will stay in the US, despite Charles stepping in to walk her down the aisle at her wedding in 2018.
A source said: “It’s sad but the King understands the situation.”
King Charles is understood to be “happy” Harry is attending the Coronation but has “some disappointment” he will not see Meghan or two of his grandchildren.
Buckingham Palace confirmed Harry will jet 5,000 miles from his California home to be at Westminster Abbey.
But with son Archie’s fourth birthday falling on the same day, Meghan will look after him and the couple’s 22-month-old daughter Lilibet.
Five years ago, Charles stepped in at the last minute to walk Meghan down the aisle when her dad Thomas had a heart attack and pulled out of her wedding at St George’s Chapel, Windsor.
A source told The Sun: “The King is happy that Harry, his son, who he calls his ‘darling boy’ will be at the Abbey.
“He wanted him there. It is sad, he is very disappointed that he won’t see Meghan or his grandchildren but understands the situation.”
Palace invites were issued to the Sussexes more than five weeks ago but the couple kept the King and Queen waiting, and even missed a soft April 3 deadline.
A brief statement yesterday read: “Buckingham Palace is pleased to confirm that The Duke of Sussex will attend the Coronation Service at Westminster Abbey on May 6.
“The Duchess of Sussex will remain in California with Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet.”
Sources close to Meghan claim there were many factors in her decision but the main reason was to celebrate Archie’s birthday.
Meghan and Archie both travelled for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee last June despite it clashing with Lilibet’s first birthday.
But it is understood neither grandchild was invited to the 90-minute Coronation because they are too young.
Harry is expected to stay at Frogmore Cottage for the last time before he moves out.
He will not have a formal role in the Coronation. It is not thought he will be in either of the processions between the Palace and Abbey, or appear with the King and Queen on the balcony.
And it is understood he will not attend the concert at Windsor Castle, nor Sunday’s Big Lunch.
Yesterday’s announcement ends months of speculation and means organisers can finalise arrangements.
The Sun understands the seating plan was at an advanced stage and can now be signed off.
Three of Camilla’s grandchildren and her great nephew will appear as pages as will Prince George.
US TV networks are expected to broadcast from the Abbey meaning Meghan could still watch.
The Duchess is an early riser but would need to be out of bed before 4am California-time for the start.
Rob Jobson, author of upcoming book Our King: The Man and the Monarch Revealed, said it was now unlikely Meg will attend another official Palace event.
He said: “It is good news that Harry has accepted the invite and will be there to support his father.
“It is the most pragmatic move in a difficult situation and Harry has got it right. He would deeply regret it if he didn’t attend the biggest day of his father’s life.
“But the fact his wife is not attending means it is now highly unlikely we will ever see her attend an official or Palace event again — apart from maybe the King’s funeral.”
Ingrid Seward, editor of Majesty Magazine, said: “It is a double insult to her father-in-law because he walked her down the aisle in her hour of need and to not attend his Coronation would be considered as rude.
“I don’t think Meghan wanted to risk being sat in the hinterland at the Abbey.
“Turning the invite down is rude and unnecessary.
“If she had any courage she would have attended with head held high.”
Charles was hailed when he stepped in to walk Meghan down the aisle in 2018.
Speaking on the Netflix docuseries Harry & Meghan in December, Meg said: “Harry’s dad is very charming and I said to him like, ‘I’ve lost my dad in this’. So him as my father-in-law was really important to me, so I asked him to walk me down the aisle and he said ‘Yes’.”
In the series Harry praised his dad for helping choose an orchestra and gospel choir.
But he also criticised Charles in his memoir Spare earlier this year.
The King has been playing a major role in planning his Coronation. Organisers deny it will be slimmed down insisting it will be “knock your socks off”.
Rehearsals have been held on a dais inside Buckingham Palace and a ramp will be installed on the big day to ensure Charles can walk safely in his heavy robes.
Around 850 of the 2,500 congregation will be local heroes including holders of the British Empire Medal.
Only a handful of seats will be filled by MPs and Lords.