When it comes to the royal family, the vast majority of the focus rests on William and Harry, along with their wives and children. Even before Harry and Meghan departed from working royal life, the Wales brothers were the most talked-about members of the House of Windsor. However, they aren’t the Queen’s only grandchildren.
Anne’s children, Zara and Peter, have largely chosen a life outside the spotlight. Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie are settling down to start families of their own away from the shadow of Prince Andrew’s scandal. But what of the youngest child of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip? Prince Edward and Sophie’s children are many years younger than their cousins, and the royal world they’ll soon be stepping into has changed dramatically.
Royal gossips have turned their gaze to Lady Louise as the next generation of the royal family, but it’s not clear what–if anything–she’ll choose to do with her newfound spotlight.
Tabloids Turn Their Gaze to Lady Louise
Lady Louise Alice Elizabeth Mary Mountbatten-Windsor is currently 15th in line for the British throne, though that number will climb ever higher as the royal family expands. She’s the youngest granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Lady Louise–whose parents declined to accept royal titles for their children–is a lover of horses just like her grandparents. In fact, she shared a special bond with Philip over their shared passion for carriage driving.
Louise made headlines when she attended the Royal Windsor Horse Show last weekend, sporting a boxy blazer and wide-leg trousers that evoked the style of the late Princess Diana. Some British tabloids breathlessly reported that the blazer had belonged to Philip and heaped praise on the teenager for her touching gesture. The blazer was, in fact, from retailer Zara, but the praise for her style and her evident commitment to royal family tradition has continued.
What Role Could She Play in a Slimmed-Down Royal Family?
Prince Charles had made it clear that he intends to “slim down” the roster of active working royals when he claims the throne. His intention to limit working royals to the direct line of succession will leave Lady Louise on the outside–if he goes through with it. So it’s entirely possible that Louise won’t have to worry about her role as an official representative of the royal family.
As an unofficial representative, though, Louise has options.
The British tabloids and royal gossip establishment have been desperate to regroup following the chaos of “Megxit.” Sophie, Countess of Wessex, was hailed as the kind of poised, traditional royal figure that the Windsors needed to weather this storm. Her daughter shares in Sophie’s blonde good looks and her family’s blue-blooded hobbies. If she chooses to do so, Louise could easily become a society fixture. But her parents wanted their children to have a choice about joining “The Firm.”
This British teenager will always be the Queen’s granddaughter and therefore a public figure whose life is fair game for everything from Tatler to The Daily Mail. The question is what she’ll choose to do with her birthright.