“Before I begin, I must say that I can only imagine what you may have heard or perhaps read over the last few weeks. So, I want you to hear the truth from me, as much as I can share – not as a Prince, or a Duke, but as Harry, the same person that many of you have watched grow up over the last 35 years – but with a clearer perspective," Harry began.
Harry said while the UK will always be his home, he made the decision in light of the recent events, which have had a direct effect on the wellbeing of his family.
"For those reasons, it brings me great sadness that it has come to this. The decision that I have made for my wife and I to step back, is not one I made lightly.
“It was so many months of talks after so many years of challenges. And I know I haven’t always gotten it right, but as far as this goes, there really was no other option. What I want to make clear is we’re not walking away, and we certainly aren’t walking away from you."
The Duke went on to say that despite wanting to continue serving the Queen without public funding, it became apparent such a position was not going to be possible.
He added: “I hope that helps you understand what it had to come to, that I would step my family back from all I have ever known, to take a step forward into what I hope can be a more peaceful life.
“I was born into this life, and it is a great honour to serve my country and the queen. When I lost my mum 23 years ago, you took me under your wing.
“You’ve looked out for me for so long, but the media is a powerful force, and my hope is one day our collective support for each other can be more powerful because this is so much bigger than just us."
Harry concluded by thanking his family and friends for their support, before saying it has been a privilege to serve them, adding he will continue to lead a life of service.
“I will always have the utmost respect for my grandmother, my commander in chief, and I am incredibly grateful to her and the rest of my family, for the support they have shown Meghan and I over the last few months.
“I will continue to be the same man who holds his country dear and dedicates his life to supporting the causes, charities and military communities that are so important to me.
“We are taking a leap of faith - thank you for giving me the courage to take this next step.”