Camilla's Children From Her Previous Marriage See Themselves "Just On The Side" Of Royal Spotlight

Sep 16, 2022 by apost team

Camilla, Queen Consort of the United Kingdom, is one of the most controversial figures to join the British royal family. Before marrying King Charles III on Apr. 9, 2005, King Charles III and Camilla met in 1970 at a polo match. According to Britannica, many people in their friend group assumed that Charles would propose to Camilla. But in 1973, the then-25-year-old Camilla wed British Army officer Andrew Parker Bowles.

The couple had two children together but eventually divorced in 1995. Throughout the course of their first marriages, King Charles III and Camilla continued their romantic connection. According to NBC News, in the 1990s, the public blamed Camilla for the devastating end of Diana and King Charles III’s marriage. The British tabloids often referred to Camilla as the "third person" in Diana and Charles' marriage. She was even regarded as one of if not the "most hated woman in Britain."

It took decades, but Camilla changed how the public viewed her by using her platform to delve into humanitarianism. According to Princesofwhales.gov, the Queen Consort is the patron or president of over 100 charities. Her charity work focuses on important themes such as "health, literacy, supporting those in need; the elderly, victims of rape and sexual abuse and domestic violence, empowering women; food; animals, dance and heritage, and the arts." According to Express, Camilla is ranked the 11th most famous royal family member. She was ranked only four places behind her husband, King Charles III.

Despite their marriage starting off in deep controversy, the couple has shown nothing but love for one another and their children. Although the Queen Consort won the heart of Britain, her children have shied away from the spotlight of the royal family.

Prince Charles, Camilla Parker-bowles, Lady Sarah Keswick (1979), (Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images)

According to Royal UKCamilla, Queen Consort, was born as Camilla Rosemary Shand on July 17, 1947. She is the daughter of Major Bruce Middleton Hope Shand and the Hon Rosalind Maud Shand. Camilla also has one sister, Annabel Elliot, and a brother, Mark Shand. Sadly, the latter passed away in April 2014.

Camilla proved to be a lover of reading during her childhood. She also appreciated being surrounded by animals as she grew up with cats and dogs. Camilla also learned how to ride a pony through Pony Club camps.

The future Queen Consort attended Dumbrells School in Sussex during her younger years before moving on to attend Queen’s Gate School. She also studied in Switzerland and Paris, proving to be very worldly from an early start in life.

She met Andrew Parker Bowles in the late 1960s and engaged in an on-again, off-again relationship with him for many years. However, the pair’s engagement was announced in 1973. They married on July 4, 1974, at the Guards Chapel, Wellington Barracks, in London. At the time, Camilla was 25 years old, while her then-husband was 33. It was a highly appreciated society wedding that included many royal guests, including Princess AnnePrincess Margaret and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother.

However, this was not the fairytale relationship that the couple had hoped for, and Camilla and Andrew filed for divorce in December 1994 after 21 years of marriage. They had already been living separately for many years prior to this filing. Their divorce was finalized in March of the following year.

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Lady Diana Spencer, Camilla Parker-Bowles (1980), (Express Newspapers/Archive Photos/Getty Images)

Even though Camilla’s first marriage ended in heartbreak, she soon found a new love. It wasn’t long before Camilla found herself involved with the royal family, although the beginning of her relationship with them had not been off to the best of starts.

King Charles III and the Queen Consort of the United Kingdom's relationship has definitely raised eyebrows over the years. The couple had an affair while King Charles III was still married to Princess Diana, and during the last few years of her life, it was reported that the alleged affair tormented the late princess.

Then tragedy struck when Princess Diana passed away due to a car accident in 1997. Following this, Charles and Camilla began officially seeing each other two years after Diana's death. Because of Diana's untimely passing, Charles did not want to overwhelm his family with the sudden inclusion of a new spouse. Prince Harry and Prince William were still minors when their mother passed, and Charles decided that it would be best to wait until they were adults to get married to Camilla. 

Camilla and Charles finally did get married in 2005, and the small, intimate ceremony was attended by his children as well as the late Queen Elizabeth II and the late Prince Philip. Queen Elizabeth II sadly passed away on Sept 8, 2022, at her home in Balmoral Castle.

Camilla has been a loyal partner to Charles and has taken on her royal duties with grace and enthusiasm. It is certain now that Camilla is a beloved part of the royal family. 

Camilla, Prince Charles (2005), (Hugo Burnand/Pool/Getty Images)

Despite the controversy surrounding Camilla and Charles' marriage, both of them have shown that they have nothing to offer but love. Over the years, people have still speculated about the couple's relationship with the rest of the family members, but especially with William and Prince Harry.

Upon King Charles III and Camilla’s engagement in February 2005, a statement from the palace was released in which questions about Camilla's status and title as queen were addressed. 

The statement, released on Feb. 10, 2005, announced their marriage and immediately mentioned that Camilla would be using the title "HRH The Duchess of Cornwall." 

It clarified that since Charles was next in line after Queen Elizabeth II, "It is intended that Mrs. Parker Bowles should use the title HRH The Princess Consort when The Prince of Wales accedes to The Throne." Harper’s Bazaar noted that Camilla actually had the opportunity to pick up the title "Princess of Wales," but since the beloved, late Diana was bestowed that title, Camilla avoided it.

Although through the majority of Camilla’s life, she was known as the "other woman," True Royalty TV producer Juliet Rice explained to Fox News, "There’s been this historical misconception about Camilla because of the circumstances surrounding King Charles III's marriage to Princess Diana.”

Rice went on to add:

“There’s a lot of misconceptions about what really went on there and throughout all that coverage, the ‘80s and beyond, she’s never said a word. We didn’t talk to her about that, but it was nice to see her as a human, a relatively normal human being.”

Camilla, Prince Charles (2008), (Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Even though the royal family and some media outlets have worked hard to prove that Camilla could be just like any other woman, she most certainly is not. She is the Queen Consort, meaning she has plenty of responsibilities on her plate. However, she also gets to attend some wonderful events in the process of being a member of the royal family.

Back in September 2021, Camilla and Kate Middleton exuded elegance and glamor as they attended the premiere of the James Bond film “No Time To Die” at London’s Royal Albert Hall. They were accompanied by their very dapper-looking spouses, who looked very handsome in tuxedos.

The royals walked the red carpet at the star-studded premiere, having become stars in their own right. It was a rare joint engagement for the two couples, who hadn’t been at the same event together since Philip’s funeral in April of that year.

Naturally, it would make sense for the royal family to be present at such an important event, but according to TODAY, the royal family has always been a big fan of James Bond. Based on William's tuxedo look, he looks like he could be in the running to play 007 in the next movies! 

For the event, the showstopper was most certainly Kate's dazzling Jenny Packham gown, which was embellished with sheer panels and gold sequin detailing, while she accessorized with circular gold earrings by O’nitaa and nude heels by Aquaruzza, according to Vanity Fair. Jenny Packham is a British designer who is a long-time favorite of Kate, and she is often seen wearing the brand’s cocktail dresses for daytime events.

Camilla, Prince Charles (2021), (Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty images)

Many people were astonished by the sheer elegance and grace the royals displayed at the premiere. According to PEOPLE, James Bond actor Daniel Craig was quite impressed by the outfit and told the duchess, "You look jolly lovely."

Camilla wowed in a pale-blue beaded dress that she paired with a dramatic broach and looked quite beautiful as she walked the red carpet with the very dapper-looking Charles, whose tuxedo was well-fitted and looked quite Bond-esque. William followed in his father's footsteps with a sleek, form-fitting tuxedo as well, which was highlighted by a suave velvet jacket. The royals were a radiant presence on the red carpet, and Kate's dress will surely be one to remember for years to come. 

As a working royal, Camilla has made sure to use her platform for good. She has worked hard to help others in several ways. While she was Duchess of Cornwall, Camilla carried out many public engagements, typically alongside Charles. She is also a patron, president or member of several charities and organizations. Some of the social issues Camilla has worked to raise awareness about include animal welfare, poverty, literacy and sexual abuse. She has also campaigned to raise awareness of osteoporosis, a systemic skeletal disorder that can lead to bone fragility.

And while Camilla has proven that she is a very valuable member of the royal family and has worked hard to cement herself as a step-mom for William and Harry, she has never forgotten her life before marrying Charles. In fact, she has two children from her previous marriage.

Tom Parker Bowles, Laura Lopes (2022), (UK Press Pool/UK Press via Getty Images)

Camilla has two children, a son and daughter named Tom Parker Bowles and Laura Lopes (born Laura Parker Bowles), with her ex-husband Andrew Parker Bowles. Following her divorce from Andrew, Camilla wed then-Prince Charles and became the Duchess of Cornwall. At the time, Camilla took a different title than the proposed title of "Princess of Wales" because the beloved late Princess Diana was bestowed that title.

According to Express, royal biographer Penny Junor noted in her biography, "The Firm," written about Prince Phillips and the royal family, Camilla's biggest concern was her step-sons, William and Harry. 

"A not insignificant part of the reason why they had waited until 2005 to announce their engagement was a sensitivity towards the boys," Junor wrote. "They didn't want to foist a stepmother on William and Harry before they had fully grown up."

The Queen Consort connected instantly with her new step-sons. Harry commented on his relationship with his stepmother in his book "Harry: The Biography of a Prince," written by Angela Levin,

"To be honest, she's always been very close to me and William. She's not a wicked stepmother. Look at the position she's coming into." He also added: "Don't feel sorry for me and William, feel sorry for her."

Although her new step-sons welcomed Camilla with open arms, their relationship with their new step-siblings was the complete opposite. According to The News, royal author Katie Nicholl wrote about how King Charles III and Camilla's affair affected their children in her 2010 biography "Harry and William."

"William and Laura used to have terrible fights over who was to blame for their broken homes," Nicholl wrote.

Tom Parker Bowles, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Laura Lopes (2018), (David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)

Despite the rocky start to their relationship, William and Harry have grown to love their step-siblings and vice versa. The siblings all attended each other's weddings, and in 2011 Laura's daughter Eliza was a bridesmaid in William and Kate’s wedding.

Camilla's children have shied away from the public eye but have excelled in their respective fields. Her son, Tom Parker Bowles, is a famed British food critic, writer, and cookbook author. In 2005, a couple of months after his mother married King Charles III, Tom married his long-time girlfriend, Sara Buys. They have a daughter and son, Lola and Frederick.

Camilla's daughter, Laura Lopes, is an art curator. In 2006, Lopes married former Calvin Klein model Harry Lopes. On her special day, Laura wore a dress by Anna Valentine, the same designer who designed Camilla's wedding dress when she married Prince Charles. The couple now has three children; Eliza and twin boys Gus and Louis. 

In an interview with Good Morning Britain, as per Cosmopolitan, Tom explained why he and his sister stayed out of the royal spotlight, stating he and his sister were "not quite part of the royal family, to be honest."

"My mother married into it. She's part of it," he further explained. "We're the common children. We're just on the side."

According to Express, when King Charles III ascends to the throne, he "may bestow royal titles upon his stepchildren."

Although the Queen Consort's children enjoy their privacy, they occasionally make red carpet events to support their family. 

When Camilla, then-Duchess of Cornwall, was installed as the Royal Lady of the Order of the Garter by the late Queen Elizabeth II, her children made a rare appearance.

Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall (2019), (Finnbarr Webster - WPA Pool / Getty Images)

What do you think about Camilla’s children's decision to stay out of the spotlight? Do you think this decision would change if they received royal titles? Let us know, and be sure to let any other royal fans know what you have learned.

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