Natalia Grosvenor, Duchess of Westminster

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Her Grace
The Duchess of Westminster
Personal details
Born Natalia Ayesha Phillips
(1959-05-08) 8 May 1959 (age 57)
Spouse(s) Gerald Grosvenor, 6th Duke of Westminster (m. 1978 - 2016)
Children Lady Tamara Grosvenor
Lady Edwina Grosvenor
Hugh Grosvenor, 7th Duke of Westminster (b. 1991)
Lady Viola Grosvenor
Parents Harold Pedro Joseph Phillips
Georgina Wernher

Natalia Ayesha Grosvenor, Duchess of Westminster (née Phillips; born 8 May 1959) is the widow of Gerald Grosvenor, 6th Duke of Westminster. The Duchess will assume the style of Dowager Duchess only upon the marriage of her son. At the time of her husband's succession to the title, there were four Duchesses of Westminster, the current Duchess, Sally Grosvenor, Duchess of Westminster, Anne Grosvenor, Duchess of Westminster and Viola Grosvenor, Duchess of Westminster.

Marriage and children[edit]

On 7 October 1978, Natalia Phillips married Gerald Cavendish Grosvenor, 6th Duke of Westminster

They had four children:

  • Lady Tamara Katharine Grosvenor (born 20 December 1979); married Edward van Cutsem, son of Hugh van Cutsem, on 6 November 2004, at Chester Cathedral.[1] Edward and Lady Tamara have two sons, Jake Louis Hannibal van Cutsem and Ludo Lupus Hugh van Cutsem, and one daughter, Isla.
  • Lady Edwina Louise Grosvenor (born 4 November 1981); married Daniel Robert Snow on 27 November 2010, at Bishop’s Lodge, Woolton, Liverpool.[2] Daniel and Lady Edwina have a daughter, Zia Snow (named after Zia Wernher),[3] and a son, Wolf Robert Snow.[4]
  • Hugh Grosvenor, 7th Duke of Westminster (born 29 January 1991)
  • Lady Viola Georgina Grosvenor (born 12 October 1992)

Duchess of Westminster[edit]

As Duchess of Westminster, Natalia has presided over the remodeling of the traditional family seat, Eaton Hall, and has been closely involved in the redesign of its formal gardens and park. She also takes an interest in the family's fine art collection.[5]

The Duchess is a director of Alex Moulton Bicycles.

She is patron of a number of charities based in the north west, near the family home in Cheshire, including:

  • Save the Family
  • CLIMB (Children Living with Inherited Metabolic Diseases)[6]
  • Barrowmore House [7]

From October 1997 to October 2007, she was Patron of the Chester Childbirth Appeal.[8]

The Duchess is one of the Duke of Cambridge's six godparents.

Royal kinship[edit]

She is the youngest of five children of Lt.-Col. Harold Pedro Joseph Phillips (1909–1980) and his wife, Georgina Wernher (1919–2011).[9][10] Her eldest sister is Alexandra Hamilton, Duchess of Abercorn and another sister is Marita Crawley, who wrote the libretto for the opera The Poet and the Tsar about their great-great-great-grandfathers, Alexander Pushkin and Emperor Nicholas I of Russia. Natalia is one of three godmothers to Prince William, Duke of Cambridge.[11] Her family have long been close to the British Royal Family, being distantly related to both Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.[12] They are also descendants, through non-Catholic marriages, of Sophia, Electress of Hanover,[10] in whose Protestant descendants is vested the right of succession to the British throne according to the Act of Settlement 1701.

They also descend from Pushkin, the Russian author and nobleman, as well as from his African great-grandfather, Abram Petrovich Gannibal, the youth believed to have belonged to a family of tribal chieftains who became a protégé of Peter the Great.

The sisters' maternal grandmother was born Countess Anastasia de Torby (later Lady "Zia" Wernher), younger morganatic daughter of Grand Duke Michael Mihailovich of Russia (a grandson of Tsar Nicholas I) by his wife Countess Sophie von Merenberg, morganatic daughter of Prince Nikolaus of Nassau (himself brother of Adolphe, Grand Duke of Luxembourg) by his wife Natalya Aleksandrovna, Pushkin's younger daughter.[10]

Lady Zia's sister Countess Nadezhda de Torby (or "Nada") was the wife of Prince George of Battenberg (later George Mountbatten, 2nd Marquess of Milford Haven), elder maternal uncle of the Duke of Edinburgh. The Torby sisters were third cousins of the prince through their common ancestor, Tsar Nicholas I.[10] Natalia's paternal grandparents were Col. Joseph Harold John Phillips and his wife Mary Mercedes Bryce, whose niece Janet Mercedes Bryce (daughter of Major Francis Bryce of Hamilton, Bermuda) married David Mountbatten, 3rd Marquess of Milford Haven, Nada Mountbatten's son.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "UK | Royals attend top society wedding". BBC News. 2004-11-06. Retrieved 2016-04-03. 
  2. ^ "Flintshire". Flintshirechronicle.co.uk. 2012-01-01. Retrieved 2016-04-03. 
  3. ^ Kay, Richard (20 October 2011). "Dame Vera's surprising engagement". Daily Mail. London. 
  4. ^ "Lady Edwina Grosvenor". Chester Chronicle. Retrieved 27 November 2016. 
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 December 2011. Retrieved 22 January 2012. 
  6. ^ "Medical devices - European Commission" (PDF). Ec.europa.eu. 2015-12-31. Retrieved 2016-04-03. 
  7. ^ [1][dead link]
  8. ^ "Chester Childbirth Appeal Fundraising Office, Women & Children's Building, Countess of Chester Hospital, Liverpool Road, Chester, CH2 1UL". chesterchildbirthappeal.org.uk. Retrieved 17 September 2015. 
  9. ^ Dewar, Peter Beauclerk (2001). Burke' Landed Gentry of Great Britain: Together with Members of the Titled and non-Titled Contemporary Establishment (19 ed.). Burke's Peerage. ISBN 978-0-9711966-0-5. 
  10. ^ a b c d Willis, Daniel, The Descendants of King George I of Great Britain, Clearfield Co., Inc., Baltimore, Maryland, 2002, pp. 3, 114, 601-602 ISBN 0-8063-5172-1.
  11. ^ "The Official Website of the British Monarchy : Announcement of the christening of Lady Louise Windsor". Royal.gov.uk. Archived from the original on 31 December 2013. Retrieved 2016-04-03. 
  12. ^ "London tribute to Amatu'l-Baha Ruhiyyih Khanum Rabbani honors her contributions to conservation and the arts". bahai.org. Retrieved 17 September 2015.