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Did Vogue snub Meghan Markle? Royal fans question why the Duchess of Sussex didn’t appear on one-time pal Edward Enninful’s final cover with 40 of the world’s leading ladies

Victoria Beckham, Kate Moss and Gigi Hadid were among 40 British Vogue stars that came together to shoot the cover for Edward Enninful’s final edition.

But for royals fans, Meghan Markle, 42, was noticeably absent from the impressive line-up – which also included Salma Hayek, Naomi Campbell and Miley Cyrus.

The Duchess of Sussex was once close friends with the outgoing editor-in-chief after guest editing an issue of British Vogue in 2019.

But she was nowhere to be found on Mr Enninful’s final cover, which featured Meghan’s pals Oprah Winfrey, Serena Williams, and Jameela Jamil.

Eagle-eyed royal fans questioned the Duchess’ lack of appearance, with one writing: ‘Now why did Meghan Markle deny us a Vogue cover because I know that guy called her.’

The Duchess of Sussex was once close friends with the outgoing editor-in-chief after guest editing an issue of British Vogue in 2019

Another person asked Endgame author Omid Scobie on X, formerly Twitter, ‘was your bestie #MeghanMarkIe busy that day?’ after he shared the cover.

It’s unclear if the Duchess of Sussex was contacted to appear on the magazine cover.

Meghan’s ‘Forces for Change’ issue in September 2019 put inspirational women including actresses Gemma Chan and Jane Fonda, and former New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern on the front cover. 

When it was published, it was the fastest selling issue in the magazine’s 104-year history, selling out in less than 10 days. 

The following year, Mr Enninful spoke to Sky News about criticism Meghan received when she joined the royal family, arguing that he didn’t believe it was solely down to racism.

Describing the Duchess as a ‘brave woman’, he said: ‘Parts of it were probably racism, but it was more of an institution.’

He added that while criticism was ‘harsh’, he ‘wouldn’t just blame it on racism’, saying: ‘She walked into an institution and everyone expected her to know the rules. And I think sometimes it takes a minute to understand the rules.’ 

However, Mr Enniful, who has previously praised King Charles as a monarch who can ‘evolve with the times’ and is an ambassador for The Prince’s Trust, continued to say he believed the treatment of her was ‘very unfair’.

Victoria Beckham, Kate Moss and Gigi Hadid were among 40 British Vogue stars that came together to shoot the cover for Edward Enninful 's final edition

Victoria Beckham, Kate Moss and Gigi Hadid were among 40 British Vogue stars that came together to shoot the cover for Edward Enninful ‘s final edition

Last year, the 51-year-old announced he would be stepping down from his role at the top of the fashion magazine to take up a newly created position this year.

Enninful’s last shoot as editor-in-chief has brought together 40 stars from across Hollywood and the fashion industry including Spice Girl and fashion designer Victoria Beckham, Love Island host Maya Jama and supermodel Naomi Campbell.

Enninful said: ‘So here it is: my 76th and final edition of Vogue, six-and-a-half years and 153 cover stars later, including the 40 legendary women who feature on this cover. It’s been an extraordinary ride and an absolute honour.

‘As I step into my new role, as Conde Nast’s global creative and cultural adviser for Vogue, I’m determined to keep championing the incredible array of voices in fashion and media, and ensure we keep the energy explosion of the last few years going.

‘We always say it, because it always needs to be said: there is a great deal yet to be done.’

In an editor’s letter, Enninful described the ‘gratitude’ he felt and said he was ‘proud that some important work has been done’ at the publication.

Other famous women who feature on the cover of the British magazine include Killing Eve star Jodie Comer, Orange Is The New Black actress Laverne Cox, supermodel Cindy Crawford and singer Miley Cyrus.

British model and actress Cara Delevingne, actress and activist Jane Fonda, fashion model Gigi Hadid, Mexican-American actress Salma Hayek and singer Dua Lipa also feature.

Meghan's 'Forces for Change' issue in September 2019 put inspirational women including actresses Gemma Chan and Jane Fonda, and former New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern on the front cover

Meghan’s ‘Forces for Change’ issue in September 2019 put inspirational women including actresses Gemma Chan and Jane Fonda, and former New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern on the front cover

The following year, Mr Enninful spoke to Sky News about criticism Meghan (pictured alongside one another) received when she joined the royal family, arguing that he didn't believe it was solely down to racism

The following year, Mr Enninful spoke to Sky News about criticism Meghan (pictured alongside one another) received when she joined the royal family, arguing that he didn’t believe it was solely down to racism

There is also The Queen’s Gambit star Anya Taylor-Joy, singer Rina Sawayama, fashion model Christy Turlington, TV presenter and actress Jameela Jamil and former tennis player Serena Williams.

The shoot was photographed by Steven Meisel and took place in December in a studio in Manhattan, New York.

Mr Enninful was honoured with an OBE for services to diversity in the fashion industry as part of Queen Elizabeth II’s 2016 Birthday Honours List.

He took over as editor-in-chief of British Vogue in August 2017, as the first black man to hold the top job at the British fashion magazine, and in December 2020 was promoted to European editorial director of Vogue.

During his years at the top of the fashion magazine, he has continued to break boundaries and been a champion for greater inclusivity in the industry.

He described the May 2023 issue of the publication, which included 19 disabled people from the worlds of fashion, sport, culture and activism and featured five disabled people on its cover, as ‘one of the proudest moments of my career’.

See the full feature in the March issue of British Vogue, available via digital download and on newsstands from Tuesday February 13.

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