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Margaret Rhodes

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Name  Margaret Rhodes

Margaret Rhodes itelegraphcoukmultimediaarchive02437Margare
Full Name  Margaret Elphinstone
Born  9 June 1925 (age 90) (1925-06-09) London, England
Spouse  Denys Rhodes (m. 1950–1981)
Books  The Final Curtsey: A Royal Memoir by the Queen's Cousin
Cousins  Elizabeth II, Princess Margaret, Countess of Snowdon
Grandparents  Cecilia Bowes-Lyon, Countess of Strath and Kinghorne
Parents  Sidney Buller-Fullerton-Elphinstone, 16th Lord Elphinstone, Mary Elphinstone, Lady Elphinstone
Similar People  Mary Elphinstone - Lady Elp, Cecilia Bowes‑Lyon - Countess, Claude Bowes‑Lyon - 14th Earl, Elizabeth II, Queen Elizabeth The Quee

Continuity in a changing world 'key' to Queen's popularity

Margaret Rhodes LVO (née Elphinstone; 9 June 1925 – 25 November 2016) was a first cousin of Queen Elizabeth II. From 1991 to 2002, she served as Woman of the Bedchamber to Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother.


Margaret Rhodes The day the Queen did a conga into the Palace then sang

Early life and education

Margaret Rhodes Royal baby why the Queen39s cousin isn39t excited about it

Born Margaret Elphinstone in Westminster, London, Rhodes was the youngest daughter of the 16th Lord Elphinstone and his wife Lady Mary Bowes-Lyon, an elder sister of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. Less than a year older than the future queen, she was a frequent playmate of the young Princess Elizabeth. During the Second World War she lived at Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace, and took a secretarial course. On 20 November 1947, she was a bridesmaid to Princess Elizabeth.


Margaret Rhodes The Queen vows to carry on as normal after footage of her

During World War II, she worked as a secretary for MI6. She was a Woman of the Bedchamber – a mix of lady-in-waiting and companion – to her aunt, Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, from 1991 until the latter's death in 2002.

Margaret Rhodes Margaret Rhodes The Queen39s cousin Telegraph

In the 2000 Birthday Honours Rhodes was appointed Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order (LVO). She lived in the Garden House, a grace and favour residence in Windsor Great Park. In the run-up to the Queen's 80th birthday in April 2006, Rhodes gave an interview to the BBC in which she stated her belief that the Queen would not abdicate.

Her autobiography, The Final Curtsey, was published in 2011. She was the "castaway" on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs on 3 June 2012.

On 27 November 2016, Buckingham Palace confirmed that Rhodes had died, aged 91, on 25 November following a short illness.

Personal life

On 31 July 1950, she married the writer Denys Gravenor Rhodes (1919–1981), with Princess Margaret as one of the bridesmaids. The couple had four children and one grandson:

  • Annabel Margaret Rhodes (born 21 February 1952) she married Christopher James Downing Strickland-Skailes in 1978. They have one son. She remarried (Geoffrey Vallack) Charles Cope in 1986
  • Andrew James Downing Strickland-Skailes (born 1980)
  • Victoria Ann Rhodes (born 27 September 1953), a goddaughter of Queen Elizabeth II; married Nicholas Deans in 1974
  • Simon John Gravenor Rhodes (born 22 February 1957), a godson of Princess Margaret; married Susan Simon in 1983
  • Michael Andrew Gravenor Rhodes (born 8 June 1960)
  • Ancestry

    Having been a first cousin to Elizabeth II, Rhodes shared half her ancestry with the Queen, including several notable peers.


    Margaret Rhodes Wikipedia