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Lady Louise Windsor, 18, is joined by her younger brother James, Viscount Severn, 14

The Queen’s granddaughter Lady Louise Windsor joined her brother James, Viscount Severn at the service in Westminster Hall today following Her Majesty’s procession from Buckingham Palace.

Lady Louise, 18, the daughter of the Earl and Countess of Wessex, enjoyed a close relationship with her grandmother the Queen and grew up just a stone’s throw from the late monarch’s home of Windsor Castle, in Bagshot Park.

During the occasion today, Louise performed a curtsy when stepping forward to say goodbye to her grandmother, alongside her 14-year-old brother. 

It is the first time the Queen’s youngest grandchild James has been seen since Her Majesty’s death last week. His sister Louise joined other members of the royal family on a walkabout at Balmoral on Saturday following the Queen’s death at the Scottish estate on Thursday, aged 96.

King Charles, his three siblings and his sons Prince William and Prince Harry had followed the Queen’s coffin from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall today as the Royal Family handed her over to the nation. 

James, Viscount Severn and Lady Louise Windsor pay their respects in The Palace of Westminster after the procession for the Lying-in State of Queen Elizabeth II

James, Viscount Severn and Lady Louise Windsor pay their respects in The Palace of Westminster after the procession for the Lying-in State of Queen Elizabeth II

The Queen's granddaughter Lady Louise Windsor joined her brother James, Viscount Severn at the service in Westminster Hall today

The Queen's granddaughter Lady Louise Windsor joined her brother James, Viscount Severn at the service in Westminster Hall today

Lady Louise Windsor joined her brother James, Viscount Severn at the service

Lady Louise Windsor joined her brother James, Viscount Severn at the service

The Queen’s granddaughter Lady Louise Windsor joined her brother James, Viscount Severn at the service in Westminster Hall today

Lady Louise (pictured right), 18, enjoyed a close relationship with her grandmother the Queen and grew up just a stone's throw from the late monarch's home of Windsor Castle

Lady Louise (pictured right), 18, enjoyed a close relationship with her grandmother the Queen and grew up just a stone's throw from the late monarch's home of Windsor Castle

Lady Louise (pictured right), 18, enjoyed a close relationship with her grandmother the Queen and grew up just a stone’s throw from the late monarch’s home of Windsor Castle

Tearing up: James, Viscount Severn and Lady Louise Windsor pay their respects in The Palace of Westminster

Tearing up: James, Viscount Severn and Lady Louise Windsor pay their respects in The Palace of Westminster

Tearing up: James, Viscount Severn and Lady Louise Windsor pay their respects in The Palace of Westminster

The Queen's grandchildren - including Lady Louise and Princess Beatrice - appear emotional as they attend the service today in London

The Queen's grandchildren - including Lady Louise and Princess Beatrice - appear emotional as they attend the service today in London

The Queen’s grandchildren – including Lady Louise and Princess Beatrice – appear emotional as they attend the service today in London 

Meghan joined other members of the royal family, including King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla, at the ceremony this afternoon (pictured)

Meghan joined other members of the royal family, including King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla, at the ceremony this afternoon (pictured)

King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla led members of the royal family at the ceremony this afternoon (pictured) 

Other members of the royal family including Zara Tindall, with her husband Mike, Princess Eugenie, with her husband Jack Brooksbank, and Princess Beatrice, with her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi

Other members of the royal family including Zara Tindall, with her husband Mike, Princess Eugenie, with her husband Jack Brooksbank, and Princess Beatrice, with her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi

Other members of the royal family including Zara Tindall, with her husband Mike, Princess Eugenie, with her husband Jack Brooksbank, and Princess Beatrice, with her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi also attended

Peter Phillips, the Duke of Sussex, the Prince of Wales, the Earl of Wessex, the Earl of Snowdon, the Duchess of Sussex, the Princess Royal, King Charles III, the Duke of York, the Princess of Wales and the Countess of Wessex follow the bearer party carrying the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II into Westminster Hall, London

Peter Phillips, the Duke of Sussex, the Prince of Wales, the Earl of Wessex, the Earl of Snowdon, the Duchess of Sussex, the Princess Royal, King Charles III, the Duke of York, the Princess of Wales and the Countess of Wessex follow the bearer party carrying the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II into Westminster Hall, London

Peter Phillips, the Duke of Sussex, the Prince of Wales, the Earl of Wessex, the Earl of Snowdon, the Duchess of Sussex, the Princess Royal, King Charles III, the Duke of York, the Princess of Wales and the Countess of Wessex follow the bearer party carrying the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II into Westminster Hall, London

Camilla Queen Consort, Catherine Princess of Wales, Sophie Countess of Wessex, and Meghan Duchess of Sussex at the  coffin procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall

Camilla Queen Consort, Catherine Princess of Wales, Sophie Countess of Wessex, and Meghan Duchess of Sussex at the  coffin procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall

Camilla, Queen Consort, Catherine, Princess of Wales, Sophie, Countess of Wessex, and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex at the  coffin procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall

The Queen was placed in Westminster Hall after the journey from Buckingham Palace to lie in state for the nation to pay their respects

The Queen was placed in Westminster Hall after the journey from Buckingham Palace to lie in state for the nation to pay their respects

The Queen is placed in Westminster Hall to lie in state for the nation to pay their respects 

During the walkabout at Balmoral on Saturday, Louise, who has previously been described as Her Majesty’s ‘favourite’ grandchild and a ‘secret weapon’ for the Firm, spent around 10 minutes reading the tributes and admiring the flowers with her parents, before they returned inside Balmoral Castle. 

Over the last two years, Lady Louise has taken on an increasingly public role as her parents Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex have been bumped up the royal food chain following the disgrace of Prince Andrew and the departure of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. 

She was front and centre in the Platinum Jubilee celebrations, joined her parents at the Commonwealth Games and made her successful TV debut in a documentary about her beloved grandfather the Duke of Edinburgh. 

Indeed she has become such a well-known face that she is recognised by customers of the garden centre where she has been working for £6.63 per hour since finishing her A-levels in June. 

Unlike her older cousins, Princes William and Harry, Louise was able to see a lot more of her grandparents growing up because she has always lived just 11 miles from Windsor and had the benefit of being born around the time the Queen and Prince Philip scaled back their long-haul travel. 

Queen Elizabeth II arrives at Westminster Hall from Buckingham Palace for her lying in state

Queen Elizabeth II arrives at Westminster Hall from Buckingham Palace for her lying in state

Queen Elizabeth II arrives at Westminster Hall from Buckingham Palace for her lying in state

Her Majesty was carried on the gun carriage that had also borne her parents when they died 50 years apart

Her Majesty was carried on the gun carriage that had also borne her parents when they died 50 years apart

Her Majesty was carried on the gun carriage that had also borne her parents when they died 50 years apart

The Queen's imperial state crown laid on top of a cushion, above her coffin, during the emotional funeral procession this afternoon

The Queen's imperial state crown laid on top of a cushion, above her coffin, during the emotional funeral procession this afternoon

The Queen’s imperial state crown laid on top of a cushion, above her coffin, during the emotional funeral procession this afternoon

The King and his Queen Consort led the Royal Family into Westminster Hall

The King and his Queen Consort led the Royal Family into Westminster Hall

The King and his Queen Consort led the Royal Family into Westminster Hall

2.22pm: The gun carriage bearing the coffin of the late Queen Elizabeth II departs Buckingham Palace, transferring the coffin to The Palace of Westminster

2.22pm: The gun carriage bearing the coffin of the late Queen Elizabeth II departs Buckingham Palace, transferring the coffin to The Palace of Westminster

2.22pm: The gun carriage bearing the coffin of the late Queen Elizabeth II departs Buckingham Palace, transferring the coffin to The Palace of Westminster

(left to right) The Duke of Wales, The Duke of Sussex, King Charles III, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York and the Earl of Wessex walk behind the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped in the Royal Standard

(left to right) The Duke of Wales, The Duke of Sussex, King Charles III, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York and the Earl of Wessex walk behind the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped in the Royal Standard

The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Sussex, King Charles III, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York and the Earl of Wessex walk behind the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped in the Royal Standard

From 5pm mourners will be able to file past the coffin to pay their respects to Britain’s longest-reigning monarch with an estimated one million people expected to queue for up to 30 hours to see her before the state funeral on Monday.

Her Majesty’s children and grandchildren, led by King Charles III, accompanied her to Westminster where she will lie in state after a short service that the late monarch had put together with the Church of England before she died aged 96.

What happens after today?

– September 15:

Lying in state continues and a rehearsal is likely to take place for the state funeral procession.

– September 16:

The King and Queen Consort are expected to travel to Wales while lying in state continues.

– September 17-18:

The lying in state continues and heads of state will begin to arrive for the funeral.

Members of the public Me are invited to observe a one-minute silence at 8pm on Sunday to remember the Queen.

– September 19:

There will be a national bank holiday to allow as many people as possible to watch the Queen’s funeral.

Lying in state will continue until 6.30am.

The coffin will be taken in a grand military procession from the Palace of Westminster to Westminster Abbey for the state funeral.

Senior members of the family are expected to follow behind – just like they did for the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales and the Duke of Edinburgh.

The military will line the streets and also join the procession.

Heads of state, prime ministers and presidents, European royals and key figures from public life will be invited to gather in the abbey, which can hold a congregation of 2,000.

The service will be televised, and a national two minutes’ silence is expected to be held.

After the service, the coffin will be taken in procession from Westminster Abbey to Wellington Arch and then travel to Windsor.

Once there, the hearse will travel in procession to St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle via the Long Walk, after which a televised committal service will take place in St George’s Chapel.

Later in the evening, there will be a private interment service with senior members of the royal family.

The Queen’s final resting place will be the King George VI memorial chapel, an annex to the main chapel – where her mother and father were buried, along with the ashes of her sister, Princess Margaret.

Philip’s coffin will move from the Royal Vault to the memorial chapel to join the Queen’s.

The Queen’s coffin entered Westminster Hall as the choir of Westminster Abbey and the choir of His Majesty’s Chapel Royal, St James’s Palace, sang Psalm 139. The Archbishop of Canterbury then read the opening prayer, which the King led the royals in reciting.

At 2.22pm today Her Majesty was carried down The Mall on a gun carriage – a tradition dating back to the death of her great-grandmother Queen Victoria in 1901 – as her children, grandchildren and other senior royals marched behind in time to a funeral march.

The Queen arrived at Westminster Hall 38 minutes later at 3pm – where she was placed on a catafalque – a raised platform, with her crown, orb and sceptre placed on top. The monarch will lie in state there for four days and five nights until her state funeral at Westminster Abbey on Monday.

William and Harry again set aside their feud and stood next to each other as they accompanied their beloved grandmother to Parliament. Their wives travelled separately in cars behind.

During the service, the senior royals stood in formation facing the coffin on its purple-covered catafalque, which was flanked with a tall, yellow flickering candle at each corner of the wide scarlet platform.

The King and Queen Consort stood together a metre or so apart, with the Princess Royal and Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence behind them, then the Duke of York alone, and in the next row the Earl and Countess of Wessex.

Behind them were the Prince and Princess of Wales, with the Duke of Sussex behind William, and the Duchess of Sussex directly behind Kate. The Cross of Westminster was placed at the head of the coffin.

The Queen arrived at Buckingham Palace last night to tears and cheers from the huge crowds who stood in the pouring rain to welcome her home after her death at Balmoral last Thursday. The route from RAF Northolt to the palace was packed. There was a wave of lights as many raised their mobile phones in the air to film the hearse as it passed.

Mourners cheered and clapped in the rain as the new state hearse travelled down Constitution Hill and around the Queen Victoria Memorial as it slowed, then drove through the gates of the palace and through the central arch into the quadrangle.

Outriders stopped with their heads bowed at the end of the journey, while a police officer at the gate saluted.

People cheered ‘hip hip hooray’ after the coffin drove under the arch. Many lining the street put down their umbrellas as a sign of respect while some could be seen wiping tears from their eyes, while phone camera lights lit up the crowds.

Upon arriving at the Grand Entrance of the palace, a guard of honour was formed by the King’s Guard.

Her Majesty was received by all her children and grandchildren, including the King and Queen, the Prince and Princess of Wales and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Shortly after witnessing the arrival of the coffin, Charles and Camilla left Buckingham Palace.

Prayers and a service reserved for close family members took place shortly after the coffin arrived last night, with the King, Camilla, William and Kate and Harry and Meghan all in attendance.

Princess Anne, who has travelled with her mother’s coffin from Balmoral to Edinburgh, and from the Scottish capital back to London, was also present with husband Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence.

Peter Phillips, his sister Zara, Mike Tindall, the Duke of York and daughters Beatrice and Eugenie, along with their husbands Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi and Jack Brooksbank – were also among those gathered.

But Sarah Ferguson, ex-wife of Prince Andrew and who still lives with the duke, did not receive an invite because of their divorce.

The Queen stayed in the Bow Room in the palace overnight before she was transported to the Palace of Westminster, where she will lie in state until Monday, September 19 – the day of her state funeral at Westminster Abbey and burial at St George’s Chapel in Windsor.

Camilla, Kate, Sophie and Meghan watch as the Queen's coffin is carried into her resting place for the next four days

Camilla, Kate, Sophie and Meghan watch as the Queen's coffin is carried into her resting place for the next four days

Camilla, Kate, Sophie and Meghan watch as the Queen’s coffin is carried into her resting place for the next four days

A sombre Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, stands during the service led by the Archbishop of Canterbury

A sombre Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, stands during the service led by the Archbishop of Canterbury

Prince Harry looks at the ancient roof alongside Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, as they stand in Westminster Hall after participating in the procession of the coffin

Prince Harry looks at the ancient roof alongside Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, as they stand in Westminster Hall after participating in the procession of the coffin

A sombre Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, stands during the service led by the Archbishop of Canterbury, left. Pictured right: Prince Harry looks at the ancient roof alongside Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, as they stand in Westminster Hall after participating in the procession of the coffin

Catherine, Princess of Wales and Britain's Prince William, Prince of Wales reassure one another as they leave after a service for the reception of Queen Elizabeth II's coffin at Westminster Hall

Catherine, Princess of Wales and Britain's Prince William, Prince of Wales reassure one another as they leave after a service for the reception of Queen Elizabeth II's coffin at Westminster Hall

Catherine, Princess of Wales and Britain’s Prince William, Prince of Wales reassure one another as they leave after a service for the reception of Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin at Westminster Hall

Britain's King Charles III, Britain's Prince William, Britain's Princess Anne, salute the coffin. Prince Harry and Prince Andrew - no longer frontline royals, did not, bowing instead

Britain's King Charles III, Britain's Prince William, Britain's Princess Anne, salute the coffin. Prince Harry and Prince Andrew - no longer frontline royals, did not, bowing instead

Britain’s King Charles III, Britain’s Prince William, Britain’s Princess Anne, salute the coffin. Prince Harry and Prince Andrew – no longer frontline royals, did not, bowing instead

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, adorned with a Royal Standard and the Imperial State Crown and pulled by a Gun Carriage of The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery, arrives at the Palace of Westminste

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, adorned with a Royal Standard and the Imperial State Crown and pulled by a Gun Carriage of The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery, arrives at the Palace of Westminste

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, adorned with a Royal Standard and the Imperial State Crown and pulled by a Gun Carriage of The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery, arrives at the Palace of Westminster

Queen’s flowers from her personal gardens: Coffin is adorned with lavender and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor and pine from Balmoral during funeral procession 

The Queen’s coffin was today adorned with lavender and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor and pine from her Scottish home of Balmoral.

The Queen’s final and saddest journey to Westminster Hall is underway today with King Charles, his three siblings and his sons Prince William and Prince Harry following her coffin as the Royal Family hands her coffin to the nation.

At 2.22pm Her Majesty was carried down The Mall on a gun carriage – a tradition dating back to the death of her great-grandmother Queen Victoria in 1901 – as her children, grandchildren and other senior royals marched behind.

Atop the coffin, there was a wreath of flowers which contained a selection of flowers including pine from the gardens of Balmoral and lavender and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor.

The Queen 's coffin was today adorned with lavender and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor and pine from her Scottish home of Balmoral

The Queen 's coffin was today adorned with lavender and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor and pine from her Scottish home of Balmoral

The Queen ‘s coffin was today adorned with lavender and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor and pine from her Scottish home of Balmoral 

It is a mark of the significance of the two residences for the late monarch. 

The Queen had spent the majority of her time over the past few years at her home of Windsor Castle. 

Meanwhile it was her Scottish home of Balmoral where she passed away earlier this month.

It marks a change from yesterday’s wreath, which was made up of her favourite flowers and served as a touching tribute to her late husband, Prince Philip.

Atop the coffin, there was a wreath of flowers which contained a selection of flowers including pine from the gardens of Balmoral and lavendar and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor

Atop the coffin, there was a wreath of flowers which contained a selection of flowers including pine from the gardens of Balmoral and lavendar and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor

Atop the coffin, there was a wreath of flowers which contained a selection of flowers including pine from the gardens of Balmoral and lavendar and rosemary from the gardens of Windsor

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, adorned with a Royal Standard and the Imperial State Crown and pulled by a Gun Carriage of The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, adorned with a Royal Standard and the Imperial State Crown and pulled by a Gun Carriage of The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, adorned with a Royal Standard and the Imperial State Crown and pulled by a Gun Carriage of The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery

The wreath, which was prepared by Balmoral staff, included sweet peas, dahlias, phlox, white heather and pine fir – all gathered from the Aberdeenshire estate.

Sweet peas – which were among the Queen’s favourite flowers – were also in the wreath laid on the Duke of Edinburgh’s coffin after his death in April last year.

Sweet peas, which are associated with April birthdays, can symbolise departures and farewells while dahlias can represent a lasting commitment between two people.

The Queen personally selected the flowers for her late husband’s coffin with a wreath that included white lilies, roses and freesias.

The Queen's children including the King and her grandchildren, including William, Harry and Peter Phillips make the mournful journey to Westminster Hall

The Queen's children including the King and her grandchildren, including William, Harry and Peter Phillips make the mournful journey to Westminster Hall

The Queen’s children including the King and her grandchildren, including William, Harry and Peter Phillips make the mournful journey to Westminster Hall

Hundreds of thousands of people lined the route but there was a silent reverence as the coffin appeared. There were some muted cheers and clapping and cries of God Save the Queen as well as many tears shed as the late monarch left her London home for the final time. All viewing areas on The Mall, Whitehall and Parliament Square were full by 1pm – with people turned away.

The procession left the palace at 2.22pm and is expected to arrive at Westminster Hall at 3pm. A service lasting around 20 minutes will be led by the Archbishop of Canterbury accompanied by the Dean of Westminster.

Princess Anne, who has remained with her mother since she dies last Thursday, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward also followed the coffin on the 1.2mile journey to Westminster Hall – the ancient heart of the Houses of Parliament where up to 1million Britons hope to see the Queen lying in state there as her father and mother did in 1952 and 2002.

Queen Consort Camilla, the Princess of Wales, the Duchess of Sussex and the Countess of Wessex followed by car. Zara and Mike Tindall. Princess Beatrice, her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, Princess Eugenie and her husband Jack Brooksbank ar e also taking part. But Andrew’s ex-wife Sarah Ferguson did not receive an invite because of their divorce.

King Charles III waves to the crowds as he is driven along The Mall to Buckingham Palace this morning

King Charles III waves to the crowds as he is driven along The Mall to Buckingham Palace this morning

King Charles III waves to the crowds as he is driven along The Mall to Buckingham Palace this morning

Queen Consort Camilla is seen arriving at Buckingham Palace this afternoon ahead of the procession for the Queen

Queen Consort Camilla is seen arriving at Buckingham Palace this afternoon ahead of the procession for the Queen

Queen Consort Camilla is seen arriving at Buckingham Palace this afternoon ahead of the procession for the Queen

The occasion is heavy with historical significance, with brothers Prince William and Prince Harry setting aside their ongoing feud to support their father by marching with him behind the coffin. For William and Harry it will bring back painful memories of when they, aged 15 and 12, walked behind the coffin of their mother Princess Diana in 1997.

Solemn members of the Royal Family gathered this lunchtime to prepare to accompany the Queen for her poignant final journey from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall, where she will lie in state for the next five nights.

The crowd burst into applause and cheers as King Charles III passed the Victoria Memorial in his state Rolls Royce as he was taken into the residence, followed later by Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice and Queen Consort Camilla.

Hundreds of thousands of well-wishers are expected to line the route as they do so. The Queen’s other children Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Princess Anne will also form part of the procession through London.

The Victoria Memorial and The Mall ahead of the procession for the Lying-in State of Queen Elizabeth II this afternoon

The Victoria Memorial and The Mall ahead of the procession for the Lying-in State of Queen Elizabeth II this afternoon

The Victoria Memorial and The Mall ahead of the procession for the Lying-in State of Queen Elizabeth II this afternoon

Her Majesty spent her final night in the Bow Room of Buckingham Palace before she will be conveyed on a gun carriage to Westminster Hall – where she will lie in state until 6.30am next Monday, the day of her funeral.

More than one million people are expected to queue in Central London for up to 35 hours to walk past her coffin – but experts believe only 400,000 will make it inside meaning 600,000 people will be left disappointed.

Mourners have also been joining the queue to attend the lying in state, opening at 5pm tonight. Government guidance says the queue is expected to be very long, with people standing for ‘many hours, possibly overnight’.

The queuing infrastructure for the Queen’s lying in state is 10 miles in length, it is understood. This includes 6.9 miles from Victoria Tower Gardens to Southwark Park, with a further three miles inside Southwark Park.

The Queen arrived at the palace last night to tears and cheers from the crowds who stood in the rain to welcome her home after her death at Balmoral last Thursday. The route from RAF Northolt to the palace was packed.

There was a wave of lights as many raised their mobile phones in the air to film the hearse as it passed. As the hearse drove through the gates, Charles could be seen bowing his head with Harry and Meghan stood behind.

 

The rise of Lady Louise Windsor: How Edward and Sophie’s horse-mad daughter has gone from a ‘normal’ childhood to a polished young royal who has been hailed the Firm’s ‘secret weapon’ 

A few years ago, it would have been possible for Lady Louise Windsor to walk down the street without prompting a second glance from passers-by.

The unassuming 18-year-old, often seen in country casuals or prim dresses, spent her childhood largely out of the spotlight, growing up in the leafy surrounds of the family’s £30million home of Bagshot Park, just a few miles from Windsor Castle.

Now it is a very different story. Over the last two years, Lady Louise has taken on an increasingly public role as her parents Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex have been bumped up the royal food chain following the disgrace of Prince Andrew and the departure of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

She was front and centre in the Platinum Jubilee celebrations, joined her parents at the Commonwealth Games and made her successful TV debut in a documentary about her beloved grandfather the Duke of Edinburgh.

Indeed she has become such a well-known face that she is recognised by customers of the garden centre where she has been working for £6.63 per hour since finishing her A-levels in June. 

Lady Louise is preparing for her next chapter as a student after learning in August that she has the grades she needs to read English at the University of St Andrews, where her cousin Prince William famously met his future wife.

Stepping into the spotlight: Lady Louise is headed off for university after receiving her A-level results. Pictured, the young royal with her mother Sophie Wessex during the Platinum Jubilee

Stepping into the spotlight: Lady Louise is headed off for university after receiving her A-level results. Pictured, the young royal with her mother Sophie Wessex during the Platinum Jubilee

Stepping into the spotlight: Lady Louise is headed off for university after receiving her A-level results. Pictured, the young royal with her mother Sophie Wessex during the Platinum Jubilee

Out of the spotlight: Lady Louise enjoyed a largely 'normal' childhood. She made one of her first high profile appearances as a bridesmaid at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's wedding in 2011. Pictured, travelling in a carriage with her cousin Prince Harry at the event

Out of the spotlight: Lady Louise enjoyed a largely 'normal' childhood. She made one of her first high profile appearances as a bridesmaid at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's wedding in 2011. Pictured, travelling in a carriage with her cousin Prince Harry at the event

Out of the spotlight: Lady Louise enjoyed a largely ‘normal’ childhood. She made one of her first high profile appearances as a bridesmaid at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding in 2011. Pictured, travelling in a carriage with her cousin Prince Harry at the event

Flourishing: Lady Louise, pictured with the Duchess of Cambridge at the 2012 Paralympic Games, has been dubbed the 'secret weapon' of the future of the Royal Family

Flourishing: Lady Louise, pictured with the Duchess of Cambridge at the 2012 Paralympic Games, has been dubbed the 'secret weapon' of the future of the Royal Family

Flourishing: Lady Louise, pictured with the Duchess of Cambridge at the 2012 Paralympic Games, has been dubbed the ‘secret weapon’ of the future of the Royal Family

Unlike her older cousins, Princes William and Harry, Louise was able to see a lot more of her grandparents growing up because she has always lived just 11 miles from Windsor and had the benefit of being born around the time the Queen and Prince Philip scaled back their long-haul travel.

Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex, wanted to give their daughter and son James, Viscount Severn, 14, a ‘normal’ childhood with schoolfriends and extra-curricular activities.

Lady Louise, who was born with esotropia, a condition that causes the eyes to turn inwards, which was corrected in a 2013 operation, was enrolled at St George’s School, Windsor Castle, before moving to St Mary’s School Ascot from year nine.

Largely kept out of the limelight, her first major Royal outing came at the age of nine when she was a bridesmaid at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding in 2011.

Welcome to the world! Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex with their daughter Lady Louis following her birth in November 2003. She was born prematurely via emergency C-section

Welcome to the world! Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex with their daughter Lady Louis following her birth in November 2003. She was born prematurely via emergency C-section

Welcome to the world! Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex with their daughter Lady Louis following her birth in November 2003. She was born prematurely via emergency C-section

Daddy's girl: Lady Louise with her father Prince Edward on a family holiday marking Princess Anne's 60th birthday in 2010. She stands with her hands behind her back, just like her father

Daddy's girl: Lady Louise with her father Prince Edward on a family holiday marking Princess Anne's 60th birthday in 2010. She stands with her hands behind her back, just like her father

Daddy’s girl: Lady Louise with her father Prince Edward on a family holiday marking Princess Anne’s 60th birthday in 2010. She stands with her hands behind her back, just like her father

Proud Granny: The Queen places an affectionate hand on Lady Louise's head at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2011. Lady Louise spent a lot of time with her grandmother growing up

Proud Granny: The Queen places an affectionate hand on Lady Louise's head at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2011. Lady Louise spent a lot of time with her grandmother growing up

Proud Granny: The Queen places an affectionate hand on Lady Louise’s head at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2011. Lady Louise spent a lot of time with her grandmother growing up 

Happy family: The Earl and Countess of Wessex with their children in a photo marking his 50th

Happy family: The Earl and Countess of Wessex with their children in a photo marking his 50th

Happy family: The Earl and Countess of Wessex with their children in a photo marking his 50th

Many royal watchers noted her similarity to the Queen at the same age. But it was through her grandfather the Duke of Edinburgh that she discovered her passion for carriage-driving. 

Following his retirement, Philip had more time to enjoy carriage-driving, which was one of his favourite past-times since the 1970s. He raced carriages near Norfolk before going on to represent Britain at several world and European championships.

Sophie Wessex previously revealed that Prince Philip was ‘so pleased’ when his granddaughter wanted to take up the sport. 

‘My father-in-law was always so good at encouraging, he was really encouraging of Louise. So when she not only said “please can I have a go”, but then when she showed a flair for it, he was just brilliant with her,’ she said. 

On her best behaviour: Lady Louise Windsor joins her parents for the Easter church service at Windsor Castle in 2012. She prepares to present a posy to her grandmother the Queen

On her best behaviour: Lady Louise Windsor joins her parents for the Easter church service at Windsor Castle in 2012. She prepares to present a posy to her grandmother the Queen

On her best behaviour: Lady Louise Windsor joins her parents for the Easter church service at Windsor Castle in 2012. She prepares to present a posy to her grandmother the Queen

Shared interests: The Queen and Lady Louise chat at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2014

Shared interests: The Queen and Lady Louise chat at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2014

Shared interests: The Queen and Lady Louise chat at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in 2014

‘They used to chat away about it and he would always turn up if she was competing in the Great Park, he would always turn up to watch her and watch her training days.’ 

Royal expert Ingrid Seward added in an interview with FEMAIL: ‘Prince Philip took pleasure in watching Louise compete at the Royal Windsor Horse Show. He would have made sure she had some top-class tuition from one of his grooms and of course the availability of ponies and carriages to drive.’

Lady Louise now takes part in competitions and has driven her grandfather’s ponies as a way to keep his memory alive. 

The teenager, who was also a Girl Guide, also paid tribute to her grandfather by completing her Duke of Edinburgh award. 

In the public eye: Lady Louise with her parents and younger brother at Trooping the Colour in 2013. The Wessexes were much further down the royal food chain when she was growing up

In the public eye: Lady Louise with her parents and younger brother at Trooping the Colour in 2013. The Wessexes were much further down the royal food chain when she was growing up

In the public eye: Lady Louise with her parents and younger brother at Trooping the Colour in 2013. The Wessexes were much further down the royal food chain when she was growing up 

Confident: Lady Louise joins her father Prince Edward to ride out on the final night of the Queen's 90th birthday celebrations in 2016. The teenager is an avid equestrian

Confident: Lady Louise joins her father Prince Edward to ride out on the final night of the Queen's 90th birthday celebrations in 2016. The teenager is an avid equestrian

Confident: Lady Louise joins her father Prince Edward to ride out on the final night of the Queen’s 90th birthday celebrations in 2016. The teenager is an avid equestrian

Dignified: Lady Louise was a 'special attendant' at the wedding of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, pictured, and handled herself with poise when her dress blew up on the stairs

Dignified: Lady Louise was a 'special attendant' at the wedding of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, pictured, and handled herself with poise when her dress blew up on the stairs

Dignified: Lady Louise was a ‘special attendant’ at the wedding of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, pictured, and handled herself with poise when her dress blew up on the stairs

Royal events: The Wessexes arrive for church on Christmas Day at Sandringham in 2018

Royal events: The Wessexes arrive for church on Christmas Day at Sandringham in 2018

Royal events: The Wessexes arrive for church on Christmas Day at Sandringham in 2018

Prince Edward commented on how it had made his daughter ‘more confident’. 

‘It’s just broadened her horizons. I think she’s probably got a little focused on, especially at the school she is at, just on the academics,’ he said of his daughter, who studied Politics, English, History and Drama at AS Level. 

The Countess of Wessex described her daughter as a ‘committed person’ who spent a lot of time on her bike during lockdown. 

‘This is the kind of thing that really ticks the boxes for her. But in terms of confidence, it’s given her a huge amount. She’s taken up fencing again as her skill, which she has really loved,’ she said. 

Lady Louise demonstrated her poise on the public stage when she suffered a brief mishap while acting as a ‘special attendant’ in the bridal party for Princess Eugenie’s wedding to Jack Brooksbank in 2018. 

Devastated: Lady Louise with her tearful mother the Countess of Wessex, father Prince Edward and brother James, Viscount Severn, at Prince Philip's funeral in April 2021

Devastated: Lady Louise with her tearful mother the Countess of Wessex, father Prince Edward and brother James, Viscount Severn, at Prince Philip's funeral in April 2021

Devastated: Lady Louise with her tearful mother the Countess of Wessex, father Prince Edward and brother James, Viscount Severn, at Prince Philip’s funeral in April 2021

By their side: Lady Louise took on a public role in the days following the death of the Duke of Edinburgh. Pictured, delivering a tribute to Prince Philip with her parents

By their side: Lady Louise took on a public role in the days following the death of the Duke of Edinburgh. Pictured, delivering a tribute to Prince Philip with her parents

By their side: Lady Louise took on a public role in the days following the death of the Duke of Edinburgh. Pictured, delivering a tribute to Prince Philip with her parents

TV debut: Lady Louise reflected on her relationship with her grandfather in a BBC documentary aired after his death. It marked her first major interview on camera

TV debut: Lady Louise reflected on her relationship with her grandfather in a BBC documentary aired after his death. It marked her first major interview on camera

TV debut: Lady Louise reflected on her relationship with her grandfather in a BBC documentary aired after his death. It marked her first major interview on camera

‘Remember how she helped the bridesmaids on the steps of St. George’s Chapel as they went inside at Princess Eugenie’s wedding and her skirt blew up in the wind in front of the TV cameras? She handled it very deftly,’ Ingrid noted of the incident.

The end of her school career has coincided with a seismic shift in the Royal Family. 

While she was growing up her father, as the Queen’s fourth and youngest son, was given less responsibility than his elder siblings. By extension, his family was also afforded a more low-key existence.

Yet following the departure of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in 2020 and the subsequent disgrace of Prince Andrew, the Wessexes have found themselves thrust into the spotlight. 

Sophie, 57, is one of the Queen’s most trusted confidantes and has been described as the Royal Family’s ‘secret weapon’. 

She played a particularly public role in the days following the death of her beloved father-in-law the Duke of Edinburgh and she and Edward recently embarked on a high profile tour to mark the Platinum Jubilee. 

Putting her best foot forward: Lady Louise with her family at the Service of Thanksgiving for the life of the Duke of Edinburgh in March

Putting her best foot forward: Lady Louise with her family at the Service of Thanksgiving for the life of the Duke of Edinburgh in March

Putting her best foot forward: Lady Louise with her family at the Service of Thanksgiving for the life of the Duke of Edinburgh in March

Bright and beautiful: Lady Louise has been making more confident fashion choices, as seen in the Royal Family outing to the Easter church service at Windsor Castle in April

Bright and beautiful: Lady Louise has been making more confident fashion choices, as seen in the Royal Family outing to the Easter church service at Windsor Castle in April

Bright and beautiful: Lady Louise has been making more confident fashion choices, as seen in the Royal Family outing to the Easter church service at Windsor Castle in April 

Country casual: Lady Louise at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in May

Country casual: Lady Louise at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in May

In a flowy pattern skirt and trainers at the Commonwealth Games this month

In a flowy pattern skirt and trainers at the Commonwealth Games this month

Country casual: Lady Louise at the Royal Windsor Horse Show in May (left) and in a flowy pattern skirt and trainers at the Commonwealth Games this month

Public outings: Lady Louise joined her family for a beach clean-up in Southsea in 2020

Public outings: Lady Louise joined her family for a beach clean-up in Southsea in 2020

Public outings: Lady Louise joined her family for a beach clean-up in Southsea in 2020

Phil Dampier, who has covered the Royals for nearly 40 years, previously told the Daily Telegraph: ‘She seems to be very mature for her age and she’s shaping up to be precisely the kind of person the Queen can rely on in the future. 

‘Could there be a role for her in a slimmed-down monarchy? The Queen and Philip had 1,500 patronages between them.

‘You have to ask yourself who is going to continue their legacy with Harry and Meghan and Prince Andrew off the scene? There’s a huge workload there.’

Over the last two years Lady Louise has taken part in royal engagements ranging from a beach clean-up to a training session with England Hockey. 

Starring role: Lady Louise showed off her carriage-driving skills during the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations in May

Starring role: Lady Louise showed off her carriage-driving skills during the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations in May

Starring role: Lady Louise showed off her carriage-driving skills during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations in May  

Perfectly poised: In a carriage with her brother for the royal procession down the mall ahead of Trooping the Colour during the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations

Perfectly poised: In a carriage with her brother for the royal procession down the mall ahead of Trooping the Colour during the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations

Perfectly poised: In a carriage with her brother for the royal procession down the mall ahead of Trooping the Colour during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations

Following the death of the Duke of Edinburgh, she joined her parents on a number of outings to thank the public and members of the royal household for their kindness to the Queen. 

After a dignified display at Prince Philip’s funeral, the teenager was interviewed on camera for a documentary about his life in which she praised his sense of adventure and their shared interest in carriage-driving. 

This year, things have ramped up yet again. Lady Louise was called upon to demonstrate her equestrian skills at the A Gallop Through History performance which kicked off the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. 

She appeared in the Queen’s birthday parade, on the balcony of Buckingham Palace and at the parties and concerts at Buckingham Palace. 

Most recently she joined her parents and brother for several days of action at the Commonwealth Games, including one with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their daughter Princess Charlotte. 

Privately, Lady Louise has also been getting a taste of the ‘real world’ with her part-time job at a garden centre, the location of which has not been disclosed.

Family day out: Sophie Wessex with her children at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham

Family day out: Sophie Wessex with her children at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham

Family day out: Sophie Wessex with her children at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham

Royal sports fan! Lady Louise cheers as she watches the hockey at the Commonwealth Games

Royal sports fan! Lady Louise cheers as she watches the hockey at the Commonwealth Games

Royal sports fan! Lady Louise cheers as she watches the hockey at the Commonwealth Games

Like any other young worker, the royal has been helping out on the tills, greeting customers, pruning and potting plants.

While the security arrangements for her job have also not been made public, her parents Edward and Sophie are thought to only receive police protection when on official duties and engagements.

One shopper told The Sun: ‘I knew the cost-of-living crisis was bad, but I didn’t think I’d ever see a grandchild of the Queen working in a garden centre.’

Another customer added: ‘The staff seemed to adore her. It’s not every day you buy your begonias off a royal.’ And a third, who was served by the royal, said: ‘I couldn’t believe it was Lady Louise, I had to look twice.

‘She is a really modest and sweet young woman who is polite and attentive to customers. She seemed to be loving the job. You’d never imagine the Queen’s granddaughter would take on a role working behind a till.’

Ingrid Seward, editor of Majesty magazine, said: ‘Isn’t it wonderful the Queen’s granddaughter rolled her sleeves up and got her hands dirty with a summer job before going to university — just like any other normal teenager.’