15:12 GMT20 February 2020
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    In her 2019 Christmas message, Queen Elizabeth II admitted that the past year was quite “bumpy”, following several scandals surrounding the Royal Family, including one involving her son Prince Andrew. However, after Megxit and another royal split, it doesn’t look like 2020 is starting off on the right foot for the British monarchy either.

    The Queen’s eldest and, according to reports, favourite grandson Peter Phillips is said to have separated from his wife of 12 years Autumn and the royal grandmother could not be more upset, The Sun exclusively revealed citing sources familiar with the situation.

    Peter Phillips is the son of the Queen’s daughter Princess Anne and her first husband Captain Mark Phillips. He was brought up without a royal title, as was his sister Zara, and married Canadian national Autumn back in 2008.

    According to reports, Phillips was “devastated” by his wife’s decision to split which came as a complete “shock” to him. Some of the couple’s friends also speculated that her move could have been influenced by the recent decision of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to depart from their royal duties and move to North America.

    “Peter is absolutely devastated by this and just didn’t see it coming”, one source familiar with the matter revealed to The Sun. “He thought he was happily married and had the perfect family with two lovely daughters”.

    Britain's Peter Phillips and his wife Autumn leave following a National Service of Thanksgiving to mark the 90th birthday of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II at St Paul's Cathedral in London, Friday, June 10, 2016
    © AP Photo / Stefan Rousseau
    Britain's Peter Phillips and his wife Autumn leave following a National Service of Thanksgiving to mark the 90th birthday of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II at St Paul's Cathedral in London, Friday, June 10, 2016
    “What worries some of us is that Autumn may want to go back to Canada”, the family friend said. “Maybe she has been influenced by Harry and Meghan’s departure. Perhaps she thought if that can happen then I can leave as well? That might be unfair on her but you have to consider it”.

    The couple has two children together: Savannah, 9, and Isla, 7, who also allegedly have Canadian citizenship, which means that they could settle in the country if their mother decides to move back to her native land following the breakup. 

    “Autumn is a wonderful wife and mother and a very intelligent woman but she’s been telling her friends for some time that there were issues”, the source added. “She is a favourite of the Queen and I’m sure Her Majesty will be very upset by this as well”.

    The outlet also quoted the senior Royal source as saying that the Queen would be “crestfallen” by the news on top of other issues currently surrounding the British monarchy.

    The reports have not been confirmed by Buckingham Palace, which declined to comment on the matter. Peter Phillips is currently 15th in line to the throne.

    The news follows some other serious developments in the Royal Family, including the former Duke and Duchess of Sussexes’ January announcement that they would be stepping down from their roles as senior royals to move to Canada to live a “financially independent” life. This was preceded by another scandal in Britain’s most distinguished family, involving Elizabeth II’s son Prince Andrew and his unfortunate friendship with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein. The Duke of York’s recent explosive interview with the BBC, where he defended the association, created a clamour among the British public, prompting him to step down from his public duties.

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    United Kingdom, Duchess of Sussex, Duke of Sussex, UK royal family, Queen Elizabeth II
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