Princess Eugenie has welcomed her second baby with husband Jack Brooksbank, and kept the birth under wraps for a week.
The youngest daughter of Prince Andrew and the Duchess of York took to Instagram to announce the birth of Ernest George Ronnie Brooksbank on 30th May 2023.
Born last Tuesday weighing 7lbs 1oz, his name pays tribute to his late grandfather, Jack’s dad George, who died aged 72 in 2021, and Fergie’s father Major Ronald Ferguson.
Eugenie also said his name was a tribute to his great great great grandfather George V, whose middle name was also Ernest.
A sweet snap shows her older son August watching over his little brother asleep in his Moses basker, which the new mother captioned: ‘Augie is loving being a big brother already.’
The new arrival is 13th in line to the throne, pushing Prince Edward into 14th place.
Buckingham Palace said: ’Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank are delighted to announce the safe arrival of their son, Ernest George Ronnie Brooksbank. ‘
Princess Eugenie has welcomed her second baby with husband Jack Brooksbank, named Ernest George Ronnie
A sweet snap shared to Instagram shows proud big brother August admiring his baby brother, who was born last Tuesday
The youngest daughter of Prince Andrew and the Duchess of York took to Instagram to announce the birth of Ernest George Ronnie Brooksbank on 30th May 2023
Jack and a very pregnant Eugenie pictured in April, at the traditional Easter Sunday Mattins Service at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle
Ernest will not receive a title, however, and – according to rules laid down by George V in 1917 – is not entitled to be called His Royal Highness.
He is the first of Elizabeth II’s great-grandchildren to be born since her death last September.
The new baby is named after Eugenie’s grandfather on Sarah Ferguson’s side, Major Ronald Ferguson, as well as Jack Brooksbank’s own father George Brooksbank, who passed away in November 2021.
Major Ronald, who died in 2003 aged 71 in London, was polo manager to the late Prince Philip before working for King Charles.
He was educated at Eton, and followed up with a 19-year military career via Sandhurst and a commission in the Household Cavalry.
At the height of his career, he captained the Sovereign’s Escort during the Queen’s Trooping the Colour birthday parade.
He was known to be a colourful figure of London’s society, especially due to his marital affairs.
The Major was known to be protective of his family, especially his daughter Sarah, and valued his privacy.
He once told a journalist: ‘I am nobody. Nobody at all. I just happen to be the father of the Duchess of York. I mean, that doesn’t make me terribly important, does it?’
His 1974 divorce from Fergie’s mother Susan Barrantes was highly publicised after she eloped with Argentinian polo player Hector Barrantes.
He lost his position as polo manager in 1988 after the defunct News of the World published a story linking him to the Wingmore Club, described as ‘a health club and massage parlour in London staffed by girls who, dressed in starched white “medical” gowns, allegedly offered à la carte sexual services to members.’
Major Ferguson always denied he used the club for sexual purposes, but the scandal impacted his reputation.
In 1994, his tell-all memoirs, the Galloping Major ‘The Galloping Major: My Life in Singular Times’ was published, where he made bold claims about the royal family.
At one point, talking of how he was dismissed as polo manager by Prince Philip, Ferguson wrote: ‘The impression was that [Prince Philip] had been advised to perform a royal version of ethnic cleansing by getting rid of the Ferguson family from his circle.’
In 2021, Fergie expressed regrets about the memoirs, admitted she’d rather her father hadn’t published it.
Speaking to Town & Country for a special digital cover story, Sarah admitted she did not want her father’s book to be published.
She said: ‘I never read that book. I felt that it would have been better that he hadn’t written it.’
Major Ferguson died in 2003 following a heart attack in Basingstoke, Hampshire. He was reinstated into the Guards Polo Club shortly before he died.
Prince Andrew was spotted out horse riding today before the news of the birth of his second grandson was announced
The Duke of York looked in good spirits as he drove himself to an early morning horse riding session at Windsor Castle
Meanwhile, George Brooksbank, Jack’s father, died just three days before the christening of his nine-month-old grandson August at the All Saints Chapel in Windsor Great Park.
The Brooksbank family paid tribute to the old Etonian, 72, in a notice placed in the Daily Telegraph at the time, saying he ‘loved all the good things in life’, most of all his family.
The touching note read: ‘Brooksbank, George. Died on 18th November. Loved all the good things in life but especially his wife, friends, boys, daughters-in-law and grandchildren.
‘Private family cremation, memorial details to be announced.’
The poignant reference to grandchildren came after Mr Brooksbank, the father of Eugenie’s husband Jack, was able to meet baby August, who was born in February.
But Mr Brooksbank, who had been ill for some time, tragically died in the run-up to the family gathering. It was said at the time that he never fully recovered after catching coronavirus in 2020.
August was baptised in a rare double royal christening in Windsor with his second cousin, Lucas – the son of Mike and Zara Tindall – in the presence of the late Queen, who had been under doctors’ orders to rest for more than a month.
Both Princess Eugenie, 33, who is an HRH, and Jack, 37, have jobs outside of the Royal Family and do not undertake official duties. It is expected that their sons will follow suit.
The baby was named George after Jack’s father, who died in 2021 (pictured, at Eugenie and Jack’s wedding in 2018)
Born last Tuesday weighing 7lbs 1oz, his name also pays tribute to Fergie’s father Major Ronald Ferguson (pictured, right, with the York family)
Sarah Ferguson said her father Sir Ronald Ferguson, pictured in 1986. He died in 2003 from a heart attack
Eugenie also said his name was a tribute to his great great great grandfather George V, whose middle name was also Ernest
The Brooksbank’s eldest child, August, was also born at the private Portland Hospital in London, delivered by caesarean section due to the Princess’s childhood scoliosis operation on her spine.
Their new baby is the third grandchild for the beleaguered Duke of York and his ex-wife, Sarah, Duchess of York.
Prince Andrew was forced to give up public duties due to the Epstein scandal and is currently fighting to remain at his Windsor home, Royal Lodge, despite efforts by his brother, the king, to evict him.
Eugenie and Jack announced earlier this year that they were expecting again on Instagram with a sweet picture showing their son kissing his laughing mother’s tummy.
They were joined on social media by proud grandmother, Sarah, Duchess of York, who also posted a sweet picture of August splashing in puddles wearing a little yellow raincoat.
The caption read: ‘You will be sharing puddles, Augie! Superb news, Granny heaven….So deeply grateful.’
The news was also announced by Buckingham Palace in a more traditional manner with a short statement, saying: ‘Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank are pleased to announce they are expecting their second child this summer.
‘The family are delighted and August is very much looking forward to being a big brother. ‘
The Princess is a director at international art gallery Hauser & Wirth, and her husband works in marketing.
The couple married in October 2018 after several years of dating.
Occasionally Eugenie used to support her late grandmother at receptions and garden parties, but this is likely to be less frequent – if at all – under her uncle, who wants to create a more streamlined monarchy.
However both she and her sister, Princess Beatrice, did attend events to mark the king’s coronation last Monday and were guests of honour at street party in Windsor.
Earlier this year Eugenie, who also campaigns against modern day slavery and on environmental issues, gave a rare interview to Reuters news agency in which she said is already teaching her toddler son to be a climate change activist and has stopped using plastic at home.
Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, the 11th in line to the throne said becoming a mother had ‘totally changed’ her outlook on the environment and made her feel more vulnerable.
Princess Eugenie is pregnant with her second child and due to give birth in the summer, it has been announced (pictured, with her son August)
Eugenie, the youngest daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson, gave birth to her first son in February 2021. Pictured with August at the late Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee
The Duchess of York, 61, has previously praised Eugenie’s mothering skills during an interview, saying both of her daughters are ‘phenomenal’ mothers
Earlier this month, a very pregnant Eugenie was glowing on the Coronation weekend as she took part in several events to celebrate her uncle King Charles III being crowned
When he was born, August weighed 8lb 1oz and the couple broke with tradition by immediately sharing a black-and-white photo to Eugenie’s Instagram of them holding their newborn’s tiny hand
She said: ‘My son’s going to be an activist from two years old….Everything is for them, right? Every decision we now make has to be about how August is going to be able to live his life.’
Eearlier this month, a very pregnant Eugenie was glowing on the Coronation weekend as she took part in several events to celebrate her uncle King Charles III being crowned.
As she and the family arrived at Westminster Abbey on May 6 to take their seats for the ceremony, Prince Harry, who sat with his cousin was pictured looking astonished at her baby bump.
Expert lip reader Jacqui Press deciphered his words to Eugenie, with whom he is incredibly close, as he saw her at the entrance to the Abbey.
She claims he said: ‘Wow, amazing look at the bump!’, using his hands to indicate to a heavily-pregnant Eugenie’s tummy.
‘I know’, her husband Jack replied, smiling as he walked to his seat.
And there’s no doubt that little one’s grandmother – affectionately known the public as ‘Fergie’ – is delighted with the newborn.
It appeared the excitement proved too much to contain as earlier this month, Eugenie’s mother appeared to let slip her due date.
Speaking to Hello , she said: ‘We don’t know what it is yet. But the baby is due by the end of May, I think. So it’s any minute now.’
In April, Sarah also revealed she loves being a grandmother and said her grandchildren find her ‘very funny’.
She told OK! magazine: ‘It’s a whole new phase of life and I am modelling myself on Super Gran.
‘I love being with them and how it brings out my inner child. My grandchildren seem to find me very funny. I love indulging them, too.’
But she admitted she gets in trouble for giving them sweets.
That same month, on Loose Women, t he Duchess of York also told the audience her grandchildren’s nickname for her.
‘They call me Gigi… like the film,’ she explained, also sharing an Easter basket – adorned with bells and other trinkets – which she says signal to her grandchildren that she has arrived.
‘They hear me coming,’ she said. ‘”Gigi coming, Gigi coming”.’