Serena Alleyne Armstrong-Jones, Countess of Snowdon (née Stanhope; born 1 March 1970) is an Anglo-Irish aristocrat. She is the estranged wife of David Armstrong-Jones, 2nd Earl of Snowdon, who is the son of Princess Margaret and thus a cousin of King Charles III.
The Countess of Snowdon
|Born||The Hon. Serena Alleyne Stanhope|
1 March 1970
(m. 1993; sep. 2020)
|Education||St Mary's School, Wantage|
Early life and educationEdit
She was born The Honourable Serena Alleyne Stanhope in Limerick, Ireland, the daughter of the then Viscount Petersham and his wife Virginia Freeman-Jackson, a debutante. Her parents divorced when she was 13 years old. She has one older brother. Through her father, she is a descendant of King Charles II of England's illegitimate child, Henry FitzRoy, 1st Duke of Grafton.
She spent most of her childhood between Chelsea with her father and her father's girlfriend (and later wife) Anita Howard, Countess of Suffolk, and Monaco with her mother. She went to St Mary's School, Wantage, where she was described as being "more interested in lacrosse than Latin". After leaving St Mary's School, she went on to study art in Italy. She also attended a finishing school in Switzerland.
In 1989, she joined Sotheby's as a trainee. She then worked as a publicist for Giorgio Armani until August 1993, two months before her wedding. She subsequently had her own shop called 'Serena Linley Provence'. The store closed in 2014.
Marriage and childrenEdit
On 8 October 1993, she married David Armstrong-Jones (then known as Viscount Linley), the only son of Princess Margaret and a nephew of Queen Elizabeth II, at St Margaret's Church, Westminster. They had met when her father commissioned Linley to design a walnut dining table for his Chelsea house.
There were 650 guests in attendance at the wedding, including Elton John, Jerry Hall, the Aga Khan, and Constantine II of Greece. In addition, there were an estimated 5,000 spectators in the streets. She wore a $9,000 dress designed by Bruce Robbins, noted for its resemblance to Princess Margaret's 1960 Norman Hartnell wedding dress, and the 'Lotus Tiara', which was on loan from her mother-in-law, Princess Margaret. Her going-away outfit was designed by Robinson Valentine.
They have two children together:
- Charles Patrick Inigo Armstrong-Jones, Viscount Linley (born 1 July 1999 at Portland Hospital in London), a former page of honour to Queen Elizabeth II.
- Lady Margarita Elizabeth Rose Alleyne Armstrong-Jones (born 14 May 2002 at Portland Hospital in London).
In February 2020, she and the Earl of Snowdon separated, and a spokesperson confirmed they will be getting a divorce.
Titles and stylesEdit
- Syal, R. (10 February 2002). "Children spent much of last years with mother". UK Telegraph. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
He married the Hon. Serena Stanhope, the daughter of the landowner Viscount Petersham, in 1993
- Charles Mosley, editor, Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knightage, 107th edition, 3 volumes (Wilmington, Delaware, U.S.A.: Burke's Peerage (Genealogical Books) Ltd, 2003), volume 2, page 1796.
- Green, Michelle. "Windsor Knot". People Magazine. Time Warner. Retrieved 6 May 2018.
- Brozan, Nadine. "Chronicle". The New York Times. Retrieved 29 May 2018.
- "Serena Linley Provence Chelsea SW3". Jonathan Clark Architects. Retrieved 6 June 2018.
- "No. 53385". The London Gazette. 28 July 1993. p. 12599.
- "Serena Stanhope and Viscount Linley's wedding". Tatler. 10 January 1994. Retrieved 5 June 2018.
- "Royal wedding dresses through the years". The Telegraph. 7 August 2015. Retrieved 5 September 2015.
- Rumbold, Judy (8 July 2007). "The sainted Valentine". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 7 November 2014. Retrieved 5 September 2015.
- Walker, Tim (1 March 2012). "The Queen turns a page for Viscount Linley's son". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 16 May 2018.
- Colacello, Bob (10 March 2017). "How the Earl of Snowdon Turned His Heritage into a Lifestyle". vanityfair.com. Vanity Fair. Retrieved 6 August 2021.
- Mackelden, Amy (17 February 2020). "Princess Margaret's Son, the Earl of Snowdon, Is Getting Divorced". Harper's BAZAAR. Retrieved 17 February 2020.
- Montague-Smith, P. (editor). (1979). Debrett's Peerage and Baronetage