Thursday, 17 Jun 2021

Sophie Wessex opens up about ‘very hard’ experience of losing mother: ‘Miss her very much’

Sophie Wessex is with the Queen ‘more and more’ says insider

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In a speech delivered at the National Federation of Women’s Institutes annual meeting, the Queen’s daughter-in-law touched on how her mother’ early death has affected her. The royal wife offered a rare insight into her personal life during the virtual meeting which she joined from the country Berkshire mansion she shares with Prince Edward.

Her mum, Mary Rhys-Jones, passed away in August 2005 at the age of 71.

Her untimely death came when Sophie’s daughter Lady Louise was not yet two years old.

The Wessexes’ son James Viscount Severn was not born until two years after Sophie lost her mother.

She told guests at the meeting: “To this day, I miss her very much and there are moments where I hear some music she loved or I do something I know she’d have wanted to hear about, which makes her early departure very hard.

“She has missed out on so much, and I’m particularly sad that she hasn’t seen my children grow up or seen how my work has grown and developed”.

Mary’s family hailed from Ireland, where her relations made their living as farmers and shopkeepers.

She worked as a secretary and also was involved in charitable work.

She married Sophie’s father Christopher Rhys-Jones and they went on to have a son and a daughter.

Christopher, who turns 90 this year, is a retired sales director for an importer of industrial tyres and rubber goods.

When she was younger, Mary reportedly once danced with Prince Philip at a ball.

Years later the pair would meet again when her son had caught the eye of the Duke of Edinburgh’s youngest son Prince Edward.

Sophie and Edward tied the knot in June 1999.

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The couple live in a sprawling mansion in Bagshot Park, 11 miles from Windsor.

Compared to other royals, the Wessexes lead a relatively quiet life in Berkshire.

Lady Louise, 17, is sometimes pictured riding in the grounds of Windsor Castle with her father Edward.

The young royal is due to turn 18 in November and will have the option to adopt a HRH title.

But given the fact that she has been raised without the title she is unlikely to change the way in which she is known.

In a previous interview, Sophie said she and Edward have raised their children as normal as they could within the royal setting.

She explained: “We try to bring them up with the understanding they are very likely to have to work for a living.

“Hence we made the decision not to use HRH titles.

“They have them and can decide to use them from 18, but I think it’s highly unlikely.”

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