Ever since their son made his royal debut nearly a year ago, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have been prioritizing Archie's privacy. And that was once again made clear after the couple, who are currently living in Los Angeles following their departure from royal duties, politely declined a "kind offer" from the government of New South Wales to name a plane after their 11-month-old son.
An official request was reportedly sent to the couple by the government of New South Wales in Australia for permission to name one of the bush planes used to fight the wildfires after their little boy, according to a report from The Sunday Telegraph. The plane in question was a large air tanker that ended up being used on a consistent basis as wildfires ravaged Australia for much of 2019 and into 2020.
Markle and Prince Harry reportedly responded to the request by letter, thanking the government for their "kind offer" but declined as their 11-month-old son Archie has "not yet entered public life," according to The Sunday Telegraph. If the plane had been named after Archie as the fire chiefs in the area had planned, there could have been an expectation for him to visit the area in some form of official capacity down the road, as Irish news outlet Etra.ie explains, and neither one of his parents seem to want that for their little boy at this point. According to Newsweek, the plane was instead named for Marie Bashir, the area's first female governor.
Australia presumably holds a special place in the couple's hearts as they were on tour on the continent just as they announced they were expecting their first child together in October 2018. And while they might have been flattered by the offer, both Markle and Prince Harry have gone to great lengths to protect their son's privacy since before he was even born.
For instance, they did not share the name of the hospital where Archie was born with the media and also kept his christening a private affair. Both decisions were considered a bit different at the time for senior members of the royal family, and those were simply the first steps, of course. In January, Markle and Prince Harry announced they would be stepping back from their senior royal roles and plan to work towards becoming financially independent. A near-unprecedented decision that would further solidify their son's chance to live a private life, if that's what he ultimately chooses.
While the couple will most certainly draw criticism for declining the offer to have a plane named after their son — in fact, they already have — it should not come as a massive surprise. They have been adamant about Archie's privacy since the very beginning and it looks like they are staying the course.