It was reported on Monday that Peter Phillips- Queen Elizabeth ‘s oldest grandchild was separating from Autumn Phillips. His wife of 12 years. The separation has today been confirmed by the couple in a statement. In which they explained that this was felt to be “the best course of action for their two children and ongoing friendship.”
“The decision to divorce and share custody came about after many months of discussions and although sad. Is an amicable one,” continues the statement. “The couples [sic] first priority will remain the continued well being and upbringing of their wonderful daughters Savannah (9) and Isla (7).”
The news was first reported by the Sun on Monday evening. And in its coverage, the tabloid quoted an anonymous source who said that Queen Elizabeth was “upset” by the news. Which follows a turbulent few months for the royal family. The couple’s statement acknowledges that “both families were naturally sad at the announcement,”. But emphasized that they were also “fully supportive of Peter and Autumn in the joint decision to co parent their children”. A source also told Town & Country that “whilst sad at the decision, both families are hugely supportive of them both and the girls.”
This is, of course, far from the first royal separation the Queen has encountered. Three of her four children, Prince Charles, Princess Anne, and Prince Andrew, have all been through divorces. So it makes sense that she would be understanding.
The statement also notes that the couple informed both of their families of their decision last year–reportedly in the fall–so. While to outsiders this may seem to be coming hot on the heels of other dramatic royal news. There’s been more adjustment time behind the scenes.
The Queen returned to London today after her annual winter break, during which she privately commemorated the 68th anniversary of her accession to the throne.