20 February 2021

UK: Name of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank's son has been announced

Buckingham Palace issued the following statement through social media today concerning the name of Princess Eugenie of York and Jack Brooksbank's child:

Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank have announced that they have named their son August Philip Hawke Brooksbank. 

The couple have been touched by the well wishes they have received on the birth of their first child, and are delighted to share this first photo as a family.

The photo can be viewed by following the link above.

Baby boy August Brooksbank was born at the Portland Hospital in London on 9 February 2021. The name August might come as a surprise, but not the second given name Philip after his great-grandfather. According to Peerage News, the name Hawke is from the Brooksbank family. It should be added that there are quite a few members of the British royal family named Augustus throughout history, and I guess that could be one explanation? The other would of course be that the parents just happen to like the name!

Postscript 20 February 2021 at 5.55 p.m.): Princess Eugenie has been quoted as writing that her son was named after «both of his great x5 grandfathers», i.e. Rev. Edward Hawke Brooksbank, as mentioned by Peerage News, see link above, and Prince Albert (Francis Albert Augustus Charles Emmanuel), husband of Queen Victoria. It seems that the quote was posted on Princess Eugenie's Instagram account as an «Instagram Story». I have seen the quote, but have no idea how to make a link to it. However, a screenshot has been published at among others  Gert's Royals' Twitter account

Updated on 20 February 2021 at 5.55 p.m. (postscript added).

UK: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will not be returning as working members of the royal family

Buckingham Palace issued the following statement yesterday, 19 February 2021:

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed to Her Majesty The Queen that they will not be returning as working members of The Royal Family. 

Following conversations with The Duke, The Queen has written confirming that in stepping away from the work of The Royal Family it is not possible to continue with the responsibilities and duties that come with a life of public service. The honorary military appointments and Royal patronages held by The Duke and Duchess will therefore be returned to Her Majesty, before being redistributed among working members of The Royal Family. 

While all are saddened by their decision, The Duke and Duchess remain much loved members of the family.

In a note to the editors, Buckingham Palace added that 

Following The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s decision to step away last year as working members of The Royal Family, a 12-month review was agreed. A decision has now been made after conversations between The Duke of Sussex and Members of The Royal Family. The military, Commonwealth and Charitable associations which will revert to The Queen are:

    The Royal Marines, RAF Honington, Royal Navy Small Ships and Diving.

    The Queen's Commonwealth Trust, The Rugby Football Union, The Rugby Football  League, The Royal National Theatre and The Association of Commonwealth Universities.

The decision to step back as senior members of the British royal family was announced on 8 January 2020. Yesterday's statement informing the public that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who currently live in Los Angeles, USA, will not be returning as working members did not come as a surprise to anyone who has followed the developments during the last year. I still feel sad about the decision, but I both respect it and understand it well. It should be added, as Michael Rhodes of Peerage News has pointed out, we will most likely still on various occasions be seeing the Duke of Sussex in uniform. He can not wear those uniforms of the regiments of which he was honorary colonel or captain general, but he will retain the right to wear those of the regiments in which he served. 

Last Sunday (Valentine's Day) it was announced that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expecting their second child later this year. Their first child, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor, was born on 6 May 2019.

12 February 2021

Norway: King Harald's sick leave extended

The Norwegian Royal Court announced today that King Harald's sick leave has been extended to 14 March 2021. The king was expexted to resume his duties on Monday 15 February, but his medical team has recommended further rehabilitation before he gets back to work. The king was operated for a torn tendon above his knee on 30 January.

King Harald is currently staying at the Royal Lodge at Voksenkollen where he will continue to receive physiotherapy. Crown Prince Haakon will in other words remain Regent until 14 March 2021. 

9 February 2021

UK: Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank's first child

In the early evening today Buckingham Palace announced the birth of Princess Eugenie of York and Jack Brooksbank's first child:

Her Royal Highness Princess Eugenie was safely delivered of a son today, 9th February 2021, at 0855hrs at The Portland Hospital. Jack Brooksbank was present.

The baby weighs 8lbs 1oz.

The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh, The Duke of York, Sarah, Duchess of York, and Mr and Mrs George Brooksbank have been informed and are delighted with the news.

This is Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank’s first child, The Duke of York and Sarah, Duchess of York’s first grandchild, and the ninth great-grandchild for The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh. Her Royal Highness and her child are both doing well.

The baby boy, whose name has yet to be announced, entered the world as no. 11 in the line of succession to the British throne.

Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank were married at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle on 12 October 2018.