Friday, February 28, 2014

Royal Marriages Act still extant ... for now

At the most recent Privy Council meeting on February 11, the first order of business was "Declaration of Consent to the marriage of Edward David Lascelles and Sophie Emma Cartlidge."  

Although the British Parliament  passed the Succession to the Crown Act in 2013, the legislation cannot be implemented until all of the other 15 countries, where the Queen is Sovereign, also implement the law.  New Zealand recently passed the law, but Australia has not.  Canada faces legal challenges to the law, as well.

This means nothing has really changed.   Prince Michael and Lord St. Andrews have not regained their rights.  (The new law restores the rights of dynasts who have married Roman Catholics, but Roman Catholics still cannot succeed to the throne.)   The Royal Marriages Act (1772) was also tossed out.  The new law requires only the first six in the line of succession to seek permission to marry.

But with the new law not yet fully promulgated, the RMA is still the law, and still in use. 

The Hon Edward Lascelles is the fourth and youngest child of the 8th Earl of Harewood and his first wife, Margaret Messenger.  He was born on November 19, 1982 at Bath.   His two eldest siblings,  the Hon. Emily Shard and the Hon. Benjamin Lascelles, are not dynasts because they were born before their parents' marriage.  Benjamin is also not eligible to inherit the Harewood earldom, even though he is the first son.   The heir is the second son,  Alexander, who bears the courtesy title, Viscount Lascelles.  He is unmarried, and has a son, Leo, who has no succession rights.  

The Hon. Edward Lascelles is second in line to the Harewood earldom.   He and Miss Cartlidge most likely met in Bristol, where they both lived.  Miss Cartlidge is the daughter of  Nigel and Katharine (nee Hall) Cartlidge.

The Earl of Harewood is the son of the 7th Earl of Harewood, whose mother, Princess Mary, was the only daughter of King George V and Queen Mary.  The late Lord Harewood and Queen Elizabeth II were first cousins.

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