SEBASTIAN SHAKESPEARE: Harry’s friend’s wife Rose Astor mocks Megxit with Instagram post about ‘standing back from her tax return’ because she would ‘rather see her friends and do yoga’
During the fraught Megxit negotiations, Prince Harry has had the consolation of knowing that friends will refrain from public comment — and certainly from taking sides. But no longer.
For I can disclose that Rose Astor, whose husband Hugh van Cutsem is a friend of both Prince William and Harry, has broken her silence by mocking the dramatic announcement made last week by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex that they intend to ‘step back’ as senior members of the Royal Family.
‘I am standing back as a senior member of my tax return,’ Rose joked on social media, ‘because I’d rather drink coffee, see my friends, love my family and do yoga.’
Lady Rose Astor, pictured, seemed to make fun of the current Megxit controversy on Instagram
Prince Harry, pictured with Meghan, has been involved with other members of the Royal Family in discussions about his future and that of his family
The couple used Instagram to announce the shock decision to stand back from being senior members of the Royal family and split their time between the UK and North America
Rose, 40, explains that these activities are infinitely preferable to keeping receipts and ‘do[ing] maths which I swear is bad for my health’.
The post, which has now been removed, earned immediate admiration from friends. ‘You make me laugh!’ commented one, while another summarised it as ‘brilliant’.
But Rose is unusually tongue-tied when I call to discuss her observations. ‘I’m so sorry, I can’t say anything,’ she tells me. ‘I’m sure you understand. I’m going to be in so much trouble.’
Rose’s husband Hugh, 45, whose late father, also Hugh, was one of the Prince of Wales’s oldest friends, has known William and Harry all their lives. Prince William was senior usher at Rose and Hugh’s 2005 wedding and is godfather to their daughter Grace.
Grace was a bridesmaid at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding six years later and almost stole the show when she covered her ears on the Buckingham Palace balcony because of the noise of the cheering crowds as the newlyweds kissed. Hugh and Rose did their bit to make Meghan feel at home after she moved here, having her and Harry to supper at their house in West London.
They also attended Harry and Meghan’s wedding in 2018.
Rose heads the membership committee of Soho Farmhouse, the exclusive Oxfordshire club, where Meghan held her hen party and where she and Harry periodically escaped during the early months of their marriage.
Presumably those days are now well and truly over.