Queen Elizabeth II’s Cousin Davina, Countess of Stair, Has Died


Queen Elizabeth II has lost another of her closest confidantes this week. According to the Daily Mail, the monarch’s first cousin, Davina, Countess of Stair, has died at 87.

“The Queen will be very sad,” a royal courtier told the publication’s Sebastian Shakespeare. “They go back a very long way.” Davina was the only daughter of the Queen Mother’s younger brother, Sir David Bowes-Lyon. She was a regular guest at royal gatherings.

The sad news comes as the beloved monarch prepares to mark her 70th wedding anniversary on November 20. It will be a remarkably different celebration to those seen in the past. A close confidante of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip’s told the Daily Mail that they couldn’t bear the idea of hosting a shin-dig after losing so many of their dear friends over the past few years.

Queen Elizabeth Prince Philip Getty Images

Their incredible romance spans seven decades. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

According to the report, Her Majesty and her prince will have “no public festivities,” but rather an intimate dinner party for their “a select group of their closest friends and family member.” For those wondering what the public festivities could entailed — for their silver, golden and diamond anniversaries, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, had national services of thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey.

Prince Philip Queen Elizabeth Getty Images

The couple became man and wife on November 20, 1947. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

The Queen’s friend spoke to the the Daily Mail, explaining, “They feel they can’t top the golden and diamond wedding anniversaries and don’t particularly want to. The Duke was knocked sideways by the loss of Brian McGrath (his former Private Secretary, who died last year aged 90) and one of his closest female friends, Anne Griffiths (the librarian, archivist and keeper of the royal secrets, who died in March aged 84).”

The royals also said goodbye to the Queen’s best friends, Elizabeth Longman and her cousin Margaret Rhodes, as well as Prince Philip’s cousin Countess Mountbatten.

“They also don’t want to be reminded of the many missing faces,” the friend explained to the Daily Mail.

While Buckingham Palace has no comment on what will happen behind closed doors on the actual day, they have confirmed there will not be any formal public celebrations.

The Palace will, however, be releasing a range of commemorative souvenirs including a new biography profiling the couple, collector’s edition coins featuring their faces, and a music single, with the proceeds going to one of their chosen charities.

This post was written by Now to Love editors. For more, check out our sister site Now to Love.

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