Princess Margaret’s son the Earl of Snowdon and his wife have announced they are to divorce – the second royal split in a week.
The Queen’s nephew and his wife, Serena, the Countess of Snowdon are to separate after more than 25 years of marriage.
The Earl -David Armstrong-Jones – is best known for his high-end furniture company Linley, that make bespoke furniture and accessories.
A spokesman for the couple said: ‘The Earl and Countess of Snowdon have amicably agreed that their marriage has come to an end and that they shall be divorced.
‘They ask that the press respect their privacy and that of their family.’
It comes only a week after the Queen’s eldest grandson, Peter Phillips, and his wife Autumn announced they had separated and were planning to divorce.
The Earl – David Armstrong-Jones – who is known for his high-end furniture company and wife Serena are to separate after more than 25 years of marriage
Queen Elizabeth II and David Armstrong-Jones at Royal Ascot on 22 June 2018
The Earl and Countess of Snowdon leaving St Margaret’s Church, Westminster, after their wedding
Princess Margaret, played by Helena Bonham Carter in hit TV show The Crown, on Netflix
Lord Snowdon and Princess Margaret with their son David, in Kensington Palace on November 30, 1961
Pictured left to right, David Armstrong-Jones, Earl of Snowdon, Lady Margarita Armstrong-Jones, Serena Armstrong-Jones, Countess of Snowdon, and Charles Armstrong-Jones, Viscount Linley, attend the Alexander Dundas’s 18th birthday party hosted by Lord and Lady Dundas on December 16, 2017 in London
The couple wed in October 1993 and have two children Viscount Linley, Charles Armstrong-Jones and Lady Margarita Armstrong-Jones.
The Earl’s mother Margaret, the Queen’s sister, died in 2002 and he became the 2nd Earl of Snowdon following the death of his father the Earl of Snowdon, celebrity photographer Antony Armstrong-Jones, in 2017.
The news will be another bitter pill to swallow for Her Majesty as the royal family continues to suffer from a tumultuous start to the year.
Peter Phillips and wife Autumn separated following 12 years of marriage, the couple announced just six days ago.
Peter, 42, and Autumn, 41, informed their families of their ‘amicable’ decision to divorce ‘last year’ after deciding it was ‘the best course of action for their two children and ongoing friendship’.
The pair, who have not been seen publicly together since September, are thought to have been separated for several months.
Serena Armstrong-Jones, Countess of Snowdon and David Armstrong-Jones at the Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams exhibition dinner, V&A Museum, in London on January 29 2019
Charles Armstrong-Jones, Viscount Linley, David Armstrong-Jones, 2nd Earl of Snowdon and Lady Margarita Armstrong-Jones attend the wedding of Princess Eugenie of York and Jack Brooksbank at St George’s Chapel on October 12, 2018 in Windsor
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Lady Margarita Armstrong-Jones, Prince Philip, David Armstrong-Jones, harles Armstrong-Jones, David Armstrong-Jones, Serena Armstrong-Jones at Lord Snowdon Service of Thanksgiving, Westminster Abbey, London, in April 2017
A smiling David Armstrong-Jones at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships on Day 11, 12 July 2019
Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II (C) along with (front row L-R) Serena Armstrong-Jones, Countess of Snowdon, David Armstrong-Jones, 2nd Earl of Snowdon, known as David Linley, Lady Margarita Armstrong-Jones, Britain’s Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and Lady Sarah Chatto leave after attending a service of thanksgiving in honour of the late British photographer Antony Armstrong-Jones, the former husband of Queen Elizabeth II’s late sister Princess Margaret, better known as Lord Snowdon (1st Earl of Snowdon), David and Lady Sarah’s father, at St Margaret’s Church in London on April 7, 2017
Pictured (left to right) Erin Doherty as the Princess Royal, Marion Bailey as Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret and Ben Daniels as Lord Snowdon
Serena, Countess of Snowdon, David Armstrong-Jones, Earl of Snowdon, Margarita Armstrong-Jones, and Charles Armstrong-Jones, Viscount Linley attend the wedding of Prince Harry to Ms Meghan Markle at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor
The statement, released by a spokesperson on behalf of the couple, revealed the former couple will remain in Gloucestershire to co-parent daughters Savannah, nine, and Isla, seven.
It is the latest in a string of explosive developments within the Royal Family, following Prince Andrew’s decision to step down from duties amid the Jeffrey Epstein scandal and Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s departure last month.
The breakdown of Autumn and Peter’s marriage will be particularly painful for the Queen, 93, who enjoys a close relationship with her grandson’s wife. The monarch returned to London today following her winter break.
The statement issued by Gerard Franklin their official spokesperson reads: ‘After informing HM The Queen and members of both families last year, Peter and Autumn jointly agreed to separate.
Serena, Countess of Snowdon and David, Earl of Snowdon attend day 1 of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 20, 2017 in Ascot
Princess Margaret and her son Viscount Linley, as he was known for decades before his father’s death, after the wedding of Lady Elizabeth Anson in Westminster Abbey in 1972
David Armstrong-Jones and wife Serena at the pre-ceremony of the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in May 2018
Princess Margaret and Antony Armstrong-Jones attend the Royal Ballet at the MET circa May 1974 in New York City
The Earl and Countess of Snowdon at Westminster Abbey for the wedding between Prince William and Kate Middleton
Princess Margaret And Lord Snowdon attend the Invalid Children’s Aid Association Royal Charity Ball at The London Hilton Hotel
Serena Armstrong-Jones, David Armstrong-Jones, Earl of Snowdon and Ruth Kennedy V&A Summer Party, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, in June 2019
‘They had reached the conclusion that this was 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.
‘The couple’s first priority will remain the continued well being and upbringing of their wonderful daughters Savannah and Isla.
‘Both families were naturally sad at the announcement, but fully supportive of Peter and Autumn in the joint decision to co-parent their children.
‘Both Peter and Autumn have remained in Gloucestershire to bring up their two children where they have been settled for a number of years.
‘Peter and Autumn have requested privacy and compassion for their children while the family continues to adapt to these changes.’
More to follow…