A Conservative MP has said he is planning to bring forward legislation in an attempt to strip the Duke and Duchess of Sussex of their royal titles. Bob Seely told the PA news agency he could propose the short private member’s bill early next year in an attempt to amend the 1917 Titles Deprivation Act.
If passed, it would see MPs vote on a resolution that could give the privy council the power to downgrade Harry and Meghan’s royal status.
“There is a political issue,” he said. “As well as trashing his family and monetising his misery for public consumption, he is also attacking some important institutions in this country.”
However, bills put forward by individual MPs that lack government support rarely secure the votes needed to pass through parliament.
Seely is planning to put forward an amendment to the act, which stripped royal titles from those who supported Germany in the first world war, in early 2023. The Tory MP asked why Harry continues to use the titles while “at the same time trashes the institution of monarchy and his family”.
He is understood to have been considering his private member’s bill even before the recent controversy over the couple’s Netflix documentary.
Labour MP Rachael Maskell already has a bill going through parliament that would give the monarch new powers to remove titles or a committee of parliament to determine that a title should be taken away. She previously said that her constituents made it clear to her that they wanted the Duke of York’s title to be removed.
Meanwhile, the employment minister, Guy Opperman, used an appearance on the BBC’s Question Time to tell everyone to boycott Netflix.
“I don’t think it has a fundamental impact on the royal family. I certainly won’t be watching it. I would urge everyone to boycott Netflix and make sure that we actually focus on the things that matter,” he said.
In the series, released on Thursday, the Duke and Duchess accused the media of “destroying” them before they left the UK, and said the royal family failed to understand that Harry’s future bride required protection.