The Queen has lost her close friend and confidante the Duchess of Grafton – months after the death of husband Prince Philip.
Ann Fortune FitzRoy, the Duchess of Grafton, recently passed away at the age of 101.
The pair shared a close bond, with the Queen being the godmother to her second daughter Lady Virginia FitzRoy.
The Queen news
Her Majesty, 95, also personally appointed the Duchess as the Dame Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order in 1980.
The Duchess even joined the Royal Household on the year of Queen Elizabeth’s Coronation in 1953.
In addition, she accompanied the Queen on a number of royal trips around the world, including Nigeria in 1956, Paris in 1972 and Russia in 1994.
The news comes months after the death of Prince Philip in April.
At the time, Buckingham Palace announced: “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.”
The Queen has publicly mentioned her late husband on a handful of occasions, including a recent speech at COP26.
Meanwhile, the Queen is preparing to spend Christmas with her family at Sandringham.
The monarch is planning to travel to the royal estate in Norfolk for the festive period.
Kate Middleton and Prince William are also reportedly set to spend Christmas there.
Christmas with the royals
According to a royal expert, Kate is set to put duty first as it’s the Queen’s first Christmas without Philip.
Katie Nicholl told OK! magazine: “In the early years of being a family, they did try and alternate Christmas.
“One year with the Queen and the Royal Family and the next year with the Middleton’s. But Kate and William put duty before self and we can see that, now more than ever.”
Katie then went on to explain that Christmas was a “big thing” for the Middleton’s, and there is a “sacrifice” on Kate’s part.
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