One Young World is an annual event which brings together young leaders to hear speeches, network, and attend workshops in an attempt to help them attain the skills and knowledge to be “impactful change makers”. The Duchess of Sussex began her speech at the Bridgewater Hall by saying it was great to be back in the UK – it’s her first time back since the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. And it marked her first public speech in the UK since she stepped down as a senior royal in 2020.
Some were quick to point out the uncertain terms on which she and Prince Harry left the country when they stepped down as working royals in 2020.
Royal commentator Angela Levin said in a tweet: “It’s totally off putting to hear her first line ‘it’s very nice to be back in the UK.’ What a phoney.”
Twitter user Nidhi (@Nidhi28824901) said: “She contradicts herself at a drop of a hat. Please Meghan Markle make up your mind woman, happy to leave racist Britain or happy to be back [in] Britain? WHICH ONE????”
Others were even harsher in their criticism of the Duchess’s speech. Royal Commentator Kinsey Schofield slammed the content of her remarks on Twitter.
She said: “Please hire better speech writers. Everything she says sounds like it could be seen on a decorative plaque inside a TK Maxx.”
Others chimed in, Sin&Tonic (@Sintonic3) said: “Pass the sick bag…will she be donating her air miles I wonder?”
Gareth (@Gareth23701455) added: “I had to turn it off after 30 seconds, very nauseating.”
However, some on social media were impressed by Meghan’s words. Fans took to Twitter to defend the Duchess.
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During her speech, the Duchess focused on her own experience coming to One Young World as a counsellor in 2014.
She said:”[I was] looking around and wondering, ‘How on earth did I get here?’ Have any of you today so far had that feeling? That ‘Pinch me’ moment, where you’re just so: ‘How am I here?’
“And at that dinner there were 28 to 30 of us, the counsellors, and there I was this girl from Suits and I was surrounded by world leaders, humanitarians, prime ministers and activists that I had such a deep and longstanding respect and admiration for. And I was invited to pull up a seat at the table.”
At the end of the speech she officially declared the summit open before re-joining Prince Harry.