In Depth

Archewell: what we know about Harry and Meghan’s new charity

The Sussexes announce name of new project after US patent applications go public

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have announced the name of their new charity project, the Archewell foundation, which is due to replace the couple’s Sussex Royal brand after they formally stepped down as senior royals.

According to The Guardian, the couple spoke out after media outlets in the US obtained reports of a trademark application under the name of Archewell, with the pair reportedly “planning a wide-ranging non-profit empire, including websites, films and their own awards”.

What is Archewell?

The first indications that Harry and Meghan intended to rebrand themselves as non-working royals were this week revealed in an extensive list published on the US Patent and Trademark Office website, reports The Telegraph.

The paper revealed that the Sussexes had trademarked the name Archewell in the US last week, adding that they are “working on plans to run emotional support groups, a multi-media educational empire, and even launch a wellbeing website under a new non-profit organisation named Archewell”.

The trademark covers educational material, books and downloadable articles, as well pens, pencils, paperclips and clothing items, including tops, dresses and skirts.

After the news was reported, the couple said they were “compelled” to make a formal announcement. In a statement, the pair said they “look forward” to launching “when the time is right”.

What does Archewell mean?

Archewell, derived from the Greek word arche, meaning “sources of action”, was the inspiration for the name of their son, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor.

It replaces the Sussex Royal brand they had originally trademarked in the UK, but were banned from using by Buckingham Palace this year after controversially stepping down as senior royals.

The Duke and Duchess told the Telegraph: “Before SussexRoyal, came the idea of ‘Arche’ – the Greek word meaning ‘source of action’.

“We connected to this concept for the charitable organisation we hoped to build one day, and it became the inspiration for our son’s name. To do something of meaning, to do something that matters. Archewell is a name that combines an ancient word for strength and action, and another that evokes the deep resources we each must draw upon. We look forward to launching Archewell when the time is right.”

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Why is it controversial?

The Daily Mail reports that the couple have been criticised for revealing details of their plans as Prime Minister Boris Johnson was moved into intensive care with coronavirus.

Speaking to the paper, royal biographer Phil Dampier said: “It’s appalling timing, I would say. It was the worst possible timing.

“If I were Harry and Meghan I would have laid low until this situation was over. People everywhere are really concerned with dealing with this and it does not look good, however good the cause is.”

However, the Telegraph explains: “The couple had not planned to launch details of the ‘non-profit’ just yet, emphasising that they and the world were rightly focusing on the threat posed by coronavirus.

“But after paperwork including the name was filed in the public domain in the US, and seen by this newspaper, they confirmed they will be launching under the name Archewell.”

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