England: Queen’s grandson and his wife to divorce

The Queen’s grandson Peter Phillips and his wife Autumn have confirmed they have separated.A statement issued on their behalf said the decision to divorce was “the best course of action for their two children and ongoing friendship”.It said they will share custody of their children Savannah, nine, and Isla, seven.Both of their families were “sad” but “fully supportive” of the decision to “co-parent”, the statement added.The couple told the Queen and other Royal Family members about their decision last year.Mr Phillips, 42, is the son of Princess Anne and her first husband, Captain Mark Phillips. He is the eldest grandchild of the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh.”The decision to divorce and share custody came about after many months of discussions and although sad, is an amicable one,” the statement read.It added: “Peter and Autumn have requested privacy and compassion for their children while the family continues to adapt to these changes.”Mr Phillips met Canadian management consultant Autumn Kelly, 41, at the Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal in 2003, while he was working for the Williams Formula 1 team.

 

They married in 2008 in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle – where the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s wedding would take place ten years later – and brought up their children in Gloucestershire.Before the wedding, Mrs Phillips gave up her Catholic faith – a move which, because of rules on royal successions that were later changed, allowed Mr Phillips to retain his right to the throne.While Mr Phillips is a member of the Royal Family, he is not a working royal and does not have a royal title because he is descended from the female line.He refused the offer of an earldom when he married so his children do not have courtesy titles.Last month the Daily Mail revealed that he featured in a Chinese television advert endorsing milk from Jersey cows.

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