Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Margaret to wed commoner

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February 27, 1960

Clarence House has released the following announcement:  "It is with the greatest pleasure that Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother announces the betrothal of her beloved daughter the Princess Margaret to Mr. Antony Charles Robert Armstrong-Jones, son of Mr. R.O.L. Armstrong-Jones, Q.C., and the Countess of Rosse, to which union the Queen has gladly given her consent."

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Mr. Armstrong-Jones is a professional photograph, according to the New York Times.   Princess Margaret's engagement to "a commoner ends a decade of speculation on her eventual marital choice."

It was just over four years ago, in October 1955, that the Princess ended her relationship with Group Captain Peter Townsend because he had been divorced.

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The date of the wedding has not been announced.

Queen Elizabeth's private secretary, Commander Richard Colville, tells reporters that the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh "are delighted because this is such an obviously happy match."

The Queen has asked Mr. Armstrong-Jones to stay at Buckingham Palace "so that he can be in close touch with all the people making the arrangements for the wedding."
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The Princess and Mr. Armstrong-Jones met two years ago at a party in London.  They have spent time together at Balmoral Castle and at Sandringham, both of which are owned by the queen.   They will be spending the weekend at Royal Lodge with the Queen Mother.

Mr. Armstrong-Jones will celebrate his 30th birthday on March 7.  He attended Eton College and Jesus College, Cambridge.  His parents are divorced. His father, Ronald, was married for the third time on February 11 to Jennifer Unite, who is only a year older than Princess Margaret.   His first two marriages to the the present Countess of Rosse and Carol Coombe were ended in divorce.

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Ronald Armstrong-Jones, who served in both world wars, is said to be a "convivial and popular lawyer."

Princess Margaret will be the first member of the royal family to "marry outside royalty or higher ranks of the peerage" since 1919 when Princess Patricia of Connaught, married the Hon. Alexander Ramsay, third son of the 13th Earl of Dalhousie.

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The Queen has informed the Prime Minster Harold Macmillan of the engagement.

1 comment:

Wendy Hunter said...

I enjoyed the line about Ronald Armstrong-Jones suggesting that he was “convivial and popular.” Can you imagine a comment like that passing muster today? It reminds me of the narrators in the old Pathe newsreels who never could resist making absurd comments and flowery descriptions of Royal Events. Then, again, perhaps it’s not so far from today’s Daily Mail?