My marriage is over, admits Duke of Norfolk as he quits castle  (2022)

He's the man tasked with organising Prince Charles's Coronation and the most senior lay member of the Roman Catholic Church in Britain, but the Duke of Norfolk has finally given up hope of saving his own marriage.

'I want to make it clear our marriage is over,' the Duke, Edward Fitzalan-Howard, tells me of his 34-year union to his wife, Georgina.

The news will come as a disappointment to the Queen, who is a friend of the couple. His family have held the job of Earl Marshal, organising major State occasions, since 1386.

'I want to make it clear our marriage is over,' the Duke, Edward Fitzalan-Howard, tells me of his 34-year union to his wife, Georgina (pictured)

Friends had been delighted after the couple were reunited in 2016 following a trial separation when the Duchess moved out of their magnificent family seat, Arundel Castle in West Sussex.

During that time the Duke enjoyed a close friendship with Jeannie Lopes, ex-wife of Lord Roborough. He and the Duchess had stayed away from the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in 2011, perhaps to spare the Royals any embarrassment.

However, the couple, who have five children, struggled to make the marriage work and, during the pandemic, the yoga-loving Duchess, 59, moved into a run-down 19th-century manor, Peppering Farmhouse in the village of Burpham. She had painstakingly renovated the Grade-II listed property. Now the Duke has moved into Peppering and his estranged wife has left, taking up residence elsewhere on his 24,000-acre estate.

Friends had been delighted after the couple were reunited in 2016 following a trial separation when the Duchess moved out of their magnificent family seat, Arundel Castle in West Sussex (pictured)

'It's a very strange situation,' a friend of the couple tells me. 'Eddie tried to persuade Georgina to come back to the castle. When she wouldn't, he said he would move into the house where she was living.'

The Duke, 65, confirms: 'I am currently living at Peppering Farmhouse and my wife is living at Angmering Park some two miles away on the estate.' He insists: 'This is all amicable and in no way have I evicted her.'

He declines to comment on whether they will now divorce. 'The future is still uncertain,' he adds.

The Duke, 65, confirms: 'I am currently living at Peppering Farmhouse (pictured) and my wife is living at Angmering Park some two miles away on the estate'

Lila makes a night of it in £2,500 jim-jams

(Video) EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: My marriage is over, admits Duke of Norfolk as he quits castle 16 298085

Thinking of wearing pyjamas to a Christmas party?

You'd be following in stylish footsteps: Kate Moss's model daughter, Lila Grace, turned up at a fashion show in West London, sporting what appeared to be her green, silky jim-jams.

Thinking of wearing pyjamas to a Christmas party? You'd be following in stylish footsteps: Kate Moss's model daughter, Lila Grace, turned up at a fashion show in West London, sporting what appeared to be her green, silky jim-jams

These were not, though, any old PJs but made by Christian Dior and with a price tag expected to be around £2,500.

The 19-year-old finished her look with a pair of beige rubber ankle boots from the same French designer, believed to cost £940.

Lila, 19, is signed to her mother's modelling agency and is already making a name for herself, having won a lucrative contract to pose for Marc Jacobs perfume.

Connery girl's beau is head over heels

As James Bond, Sean Connery took a direct approach to seduction. The late actor's granddaughter Saskia Connery apparently prefers her men to be even more bold.

Here, the 25-year-old fashion designer is seen having her foot kissed by her banking heir fiance Phillip Thomas Muhr.

The couple were celebrating his 32nd birthday at a restaurant. 'Happy Birthday to my best friend and wonderful fiance,' she gushes.

'I cannot wait to call you my husband.'

Here, the 25-year-old fashion designer is seen having her foot kissed by her banking heir fiance Phillip Thomas Muhr

Elvis Costello's past might not be quite as wild as he claimed.

'I'm the boy that confessed adultery when I was seven,' the Roman Catholic rock star admits.

'I thought, I'll be rumbled if I don't confess to something in confession. So I picked one, but I didn't know what it meant. I confessed — to the sound of muffled laughter.'

(Video) The Duke of Norfolk’s Deeds at Arundel Castle: The Early Howard Inheritance in Norfolk by H Warne

The smart set's talking about... Lloyd Webber's barking row

Andrew Lloyd Webber may have composed the musical Cats, but he adores his dog, Mojito, so much that he even takes the pampered pooch for afternoon tea at his Theatre Royal Drury Lane.

The West End impresario's devotion to the black Havanese puppy has, however, caused a rift with his wife of three decades.

He tells me that horsewoman Madeleine, took the poor pet to the vets without his consent — to be castrated. 'Little Mojito is not quite himself at the moment,' he wails over lunch in Covent Garden.

He tells me that horsewoman Madeleine, took the poor pet to the vets without his consent — to be castrated

'He lost his manhood on Monday against my will.'

Lord Lloyd-Webber adds: 'My wife sent him to the vet, as he kept running off, and she thought that would fix the problem.' It's a particularly painful subject for the Phantom Of The Opera creator, 73, as he's spoken publicly about how an operation left him impotent.

'I am a ladies' man who can never make love,' he lamented at the time.

'I am resigned to that.'

Rain takes sparkle off Baroness Bra

Given her recent racism controversy, Michelle Mone appears to be keeping a low profile.

The lingerie tycoon, 50, was almost unrecognisable from her glamorous social media snaps, as she used her coat to shelter from the rain, while heading out for lunch in Chelsea with her 'billionaire' husband, Doug Barrowman.

Known as Baroness Mone of Mayfair at the House of Lords, she was accused of calling a man of Indian heritage 'a waste of a man's white skin' in a WhatsApp message. She insisted that she had believed him to be '100 per cent white and British'.

Given her recent racism controversy, Michelle Mone appears to be keeping a low profile

The lingerie tycoon, 50, was almost unrecognisable from her glamorous social media snaps

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Homeland star David Harewood quit Britain because of the lack of prominent roles being offered to black actors.

And the Birmingham-born star, 56, says the situation has scarcely improved. 'I've been back in this country for three or four months now, and I still haven't seen a leading black actor on a British drama,' he says. 'Whereas in America, you see dramas led by black and Asian and Hispanic men and women every day.

'I don't know whether it's a reluctance on the part of producers, or on the part of the audience.'

Homeland star David Harewood quit Britain because of the lack of prominent roles being offered to black actors

Cynics said it wouldn't last, but Dame Joan Collins and theatre producer Percy Gibson are due to celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary — which is almost as long as the Dynasty star's previous four marriages put together.

And I hear the couple are planning a lavish party at Claridge's, the Mayfair hotel where they married in February 2002. Joanie, who wore a pink silk gown, will be nudging 89, but she has always had a relaxed approach to age. Asked about the 32-year age difference between her and Percy she declared: 'If he dies, he dies.'

Cynics said it wouldn't last, but Dame Joan Collins and theatre producer Percy Gibson are due to celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary — which is almost as long as the Dynasty star's previous four marriages put together

Saunders celebrates Ab Fab Xmas baby

Jennifer Saunders has received an absolutely fabulous early Christmas present: a new grandchild.

The comedienne and Ab Fab star is celebrating with her daughter Beattie, who's just given birth.

'New baby just dropped,' confirms actress Beattie, 32, who does not give the sex of her child.

(Video) When Prince Charles Admitted To Adultery In 1994 | Royal Secrets | Real Royalty

Jennifer Saunders has received an absolutely fabulous early Christmas present: a new grandchild

She and her BBC researcher husband, Sam Francis, already have a daughter Mabel, who was born two years ago.

Saunders, 62, who is married to actor and comedian Ade Edmondson, 64, has spoken of how difficult it was being unable to see her family during the pandemic, describing the situation as 'absolutely awful'.

(Very) modern manners

The trend for giving your pets exotic names has backfired on Mayfair sports club boss Will Woodhams.

He and his DJ wife, Annabel, named their dog Pablo Escobar, after the Colombian drug lord.

'It's embarrassing,' Woodhams tells me at the launch of William Wolfe's Guide To Excellent Living In London. 'He's a Spanish Ibizan hound, so we called him Pablo, but thought Pablo Escobar sounded a bit cooler. We didn't quite understand who he was.' He adds: 'We've renamed him Pablo Escobark to smooth over that.'

At last, a job for Prince Andrew?

I might have found just the job for Prince Andrew, seeing as Air Miles Andy has precious little to do these days.

The Royal Household is seeking an operations officer to make sure their flights go smoothly. The successful candidate will monitor the progress of each helicopter flight that carries members of the Royal Family. The advert on the royal website stresses that the successful applicant for the £34,000-per-year job, based at Odiham in Hampshire, will also advise on 'security roles'.

Expect some friendly advice: the Royal Family include four helicopter pilots in their ranks: as well as Andrew, there are also Princes Harry, William and Charles.

I might have found just the job for Prince Andrew, seeing as Air Miles Andy has precious little to do these days

Comedian Russell Howard was delighted when his grandparents told him they loyally watched all his television programmes; he was less amused when they admitted they turned the volume down.

The working-class comic, 41, whose shows include Mock The Week and Russell Howard's Good News, says: 'I come from a family where it's inconceivable that I could be on TV — it's like going to the Moon.

'Nan and grandad used to go, 'We do watch you on the TV; mind, we do watch it with the volume down because you just swear'.'

(Video) Bess Hardwick First Lady of Chatsworth

Comedian Russell Howard was delighted when his grandparents told him they loyally watched all his television programmes; he was less amused when they admitted they turned the volume down

Videos

1. Episode 107: Anne Boleyn, Henry VII and William Parr
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2. The last monk to be Archbishop of Canterbury, a famous Reformer and an earl who wept for Elizabeth
(The Anne Boleyn Files and Tudor Society)
3. Royal Connections in the Cotswolds | Queen's Platinum Jubilee Special
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4. Episode 114 - Thomas Howard, 2nd Duke of Norfolk, with Dr Kirsten Claiden-Yardley
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5. Mom Installs Camera, Sees Why She’s Always Tired
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6. Catalogue of Honor 1740 Oxford Shakespeare Part I
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