Why Harry and Meghan won't be spending Christmas with the queen this year

The royal couple "will spend the holiday this year, as a new family, with the Duchess’ mother Doria Ragland," a spokesperson said.

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/ Source: TODAY
By Alyssa Newcomb

Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, are not planning to celebrate baby Archie's first Christmas at Queen Elizabeth's Sandringham estate.

Harry and Meghan, who welcomed Archie in May, will be spending the holiday with Meghan's mother, Doria Ragland, a spokesperson for the royal couple confirmed to TODAY in a statement.

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"Having spent the last two Christmases at Sandringham, Their Royal Highnesses will spend the holiday this year, as a new family, with the Duchess’ mother Doria Ragland. This decision is in line with precedent set previously by other members of the Royal Family, and has the support of Her Majesty The Queen," the statement read. "For security reasons, we will not be providing further details on their schedule at this time."

Harry, Meghan and Archie will spend quality time with her mother this Christmas.Samir Hussein / WireImage

This Christmas will mark only the second time Harry has skipped the family gathering at Sandringham. The first was in 2012 when he was deployed in Afghanistan.

The royal family has a long tradition of spending Christmas at the estate, where cameras capture their walk to mass every year.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have had an eventful year in the spotlight, so the upcoming Christmas holiday could offer them a much-needed opportunity to recharge in private.

The royal couple and Archie went on a visit less than two months ago to Africa, where they met with locals and discussed everything from sustainability to empowering women, and even donated some of Archie's clothes to charity.

We're wishing the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and baby Archie a wonderful Christmas with Meghan's mom, however they choose to celebrate!