Lady Pamela Hicks

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Lady Pamela Hicks
Hicks in 1947
BornPamela Carmen Louise Mountbatten
(1929-04-19) 19 April 1929 (age 95)
Barcelona, Kingdom of Spain
Noble familyMountbatten
(m. 1960; died 1998)
IssueEdwina Brudenell
Ashley Hicks
India Hicks
FatherLouis Mountbatten, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma
MotherEdwina Ashley

Lady Pamela Carmen Louise Hicks (née Mountbatten; born 19 April 1929) is a British aristocrat and relative of the British royal family. She is the younger daughter of Louis Mountbatten, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma (formerly Prince Louis of Battenberg) and Edwina Mountbatten, Countess Mountbatten of Burma. Through her father, Lady Pamela is a first cousin of the late Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and a grandniece of the last Empress of Russia, Alexandra Feodorovna. She served as a bridesmaid and later as a lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth II (her third cousin). She is also a great-great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria through her father.

Early life and family[edit]

Lady Pamela was born on 19 April 1929 in Barcelona, Spain to Edwina Ashley and Louis Mountbatten, 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma. She is the second of two children, as a younger sister of Patricia Knatchbull, 2nd Countess Mountbatten of Burma. A member of the Mountbatten family by birth, she descended from the Battenberg family, a morganatic cadet branch of the House of Hesse-Darmstadt. At the request of George V, her grandparents Prince Louis of Battenberg and Princess Victoria of Hesse and by Rhine relinquished their German princely titles in 1917 in exchange for titles in the British peerage due to anti-German sentiment in Britain. Her father, who was also born a prince of Battenberg, was later created Earl Mountbatten of Burma. Through her father, she is a great-great granddaughter of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, and as of 2024, their oldest surviving descendant. Her mother, Edwina, was the daughter of Wilfrid Ashley, 1st Baron Mount Temple. Through her mother, Lady Pamela is also a great-granddaughter of Sir Ernest Cassel and a great-great granddaughter of Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 7th Earl of Shaftesbury. Through her father, she is a first cousin of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

Her baptism was celebrated on July 12, 1929, in the Chapel Royal, St. James's Palace. Her godparents were the King Alfonso XIII and the Duke of Kent, Nadejda Mountbatten, Marjorie Pratt, Countess of Brecknock (Lady Louis' first cousin), and the Duchess of Peñaranda (María del Carmen Saavedra y Collado, Marqués de Villaviciosa). [1]

She attended Hewitt School in New York City.[2]

In 1947, Lady Pamela accompanied her parents to India remaining with them throughout her father's term as Viceroy of pre-Independence India and then Governor-General of post-Partition India through 1948, living with them in Government House, New Delhi and the summer Viceregal Lodge in Simla. Following Indian independence she became secretary to her parents' friend and associate V.K. Krishna Menon, then acting as Indian High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. [3]

Official duties[edit]

Queen Elizabeth II and her lady-in-waiting Lady Pamela Mountbatten arrive at a Women's Reception at Brisbane City Hall, 1954.
Lady Pamela with her parents' close friend V. K. Krishna Menon, whose secretary she was.

In November 1947, Lady Pamela acted as a bridesmaid to then-Princess Elizabeth at her 1947 wedding to Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.[4] As lady-in-waiting to Princess Elizabeth she was with her and the Duke of Edinburgh in Kenya when George VI died on 6 February 1952.[4] In late 1953 and early 1954, she accompanied the Queen as lady-in-waiting on the royal tour to Jamaica, Panama, Fiji, Tonga, New Zealand, Australia, Ceylon, Aden, Libya, Malta and Gibraltar.[4]

Lady Pamela Mountbatten was the Corps Commandant of the Girls' Nautical Training Corps from around 1952 to around 1959.[5][6][7]

Marriage and children[edit]

Lady Pamela with Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru in India (June 1948)

Lady Pamela is the widow of interior decorator and designer David Nightingale Hicks (25 March 1929 – 29 March 1998), son of stockbroker Herbert Hicks and Iris Elsie Platten. They were married on 13 January 1960 at Romsey Abbey in Hampshire. The bridesmaids were Princess Anne, Princess Clarissa of Hesse (daughter of her cousin Sophie), Victoria Marten (god-daughter of the bride), the Hon. Joanna Knatchbull and the Hon. Amanda Knatchbull (daughters of the bride's sister Patricia).[8] Upon returning from honeymoon in the West Indies and New York, Lady Pamela learnt of the death of her mother in February 1960.[9]

Together, the couple had three children:[10]

David Nightingale Hicks died on 29 March 1998, aged 69, from lung cancer.

Later life[edit]

Lady Pamela Hicks has been a Director of H Securities Unlimited, a fund management and brokerage firm, since 1991. She is a former director of Cottesmore Farms. In 2002, she sold her mother's tiara at Sotheby's.[11]

In 2007, Lady Pamela published her memoirs of her days in New Delhi and Simla, when India was partitioned into India and Pakistan and the Union Jack came down. She wrote in India Remembered: A Personal Account of the Mountbattens During the Transfer of Power that, while her mother, Countess Mountbatten of Burma, and Jawaharlal Nehru, the future Prime Minister of India, were deeply in love, "the relationship remained platonic".[12][13] In 2012, she published the second volume of her memoirs titled Daughter of Empire: Life as a Mountbatten, chronicling her childhood, her time in India, and her time as lady-in-waiting to the Queen.[4]

After the death of her cousin, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh in 2021, she is the last surviving great-grandchild of Princess Alice of the United Kingdom, and following the death of Queen Elizabeth II in September 2022, she became the oldest living descendant of Queen Victoria. With her daughter, India Hicks, she attended the Queen's state funeral on 19 September 2022.

In film and television[edit]

In 2016, she was portrayed in the first season of The Crown.[14] She is portrayed by Lily Travers in the 2017 film Viceroy's House.

Published and upcoming works[edit]

  • Mountbatten, Pamela (2007). India Remembered: A Personal Account of the Mountbattens During the Transfer of Power. Foreword by India Hicks. Pavilion Books. ISBN 978-1-86205-759-3.
  • ——— (2012). Daughter of Empire: Life as a Mountbatten. Weidenfeld & Nicolson. ISBN 978-0297864820.
  • ——— (2024). My Years with the Queen: and Other Stories. Penguin Books. ISBN 978-1529148862.


  1. ^
  2. ^ Reginato, James. "The Raj Duet". Vanity Fair. No. 5 September 2013. Retrieved 11 January 2018.
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b c d Murphy, Victoria (3 November 2012). "Revealed: Queen's lifelong friend on what happened the night Elizabeth found out her father, King George, had died". Daily Mirror. London. Retrieved 14 June 2013.
  5. ^ "Girl's Nautical Training Corps Commandant Lady Mountbatten (bottom row, 4th right) at Surbiton, Surrey training course, 18th August 1959". 8 February 2008. Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  6. ^ "1952 - Lady Pamela Mountbatten visits members of Girls Nautical training corps.: The annual training course of the Girls' Nautical Training Corps - a voluntary". Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  7. ^ "Aug. 08, 1959 - Lady Pamela Mountbatten visits girl's nautical training corps". Retrieved 20 July 2018.
  8. ^ "The wedding of David Hicks and Lady Pamela Mountbatten". National Portrait Gallery, London.
  9. ^ "Lady Mountbatten dies in sleep on visit to Borneo". The Sydney Morning Herald. Australian Associated Press. 21 February 1960. Retrieved 14 June 2013 – via Google News.
  10. ^ Gibson, David (2 April 1998). "David Hicks, 69, Interior Design Star of the 60s, Is Dead". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 June 2013.
  11. ^ Roy, Amid (16 November 2002). "Crown of Raj last family on sale: Lady Mountbatten's tiara to go under hammer at Sotheby's". The Telegraph. London. Archived from the original on 22 January 2003. Retrieved 14 June 2013.
  12. ^ Driscoll, Margarette (22 July 2007). "Love triangle at the heart of the British handover". The Sunday Times. London. Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  13. ^ "Pamela Mountbatten on the Jawaharlal-Edwina relationship". The Hindu. 18 July 2007. Archived from the original on 11 September 2007. Retrieved 2 March 2011.
  14. ^ Hicks, India (29 November 2016). "Watching The Crown with Lady Pamela Hicks, Queen Elizabeth's Lady-in-Waiting". Town and Country.