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Last year was a hard year for the royals, from the highly publicised royal feud to the controversial Prince Andrew scandal. After just five months however, 2020 looks set to be even worse.
The year started with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stepping down from their roles as senior royal family members and losing their HRH status, followed by a string of royal divorces and now the coronavirus outbreak.
With so much drama and uncertainty, a few stable royal family members (and favourites of the Queen) have been elevated and given more responsibility.
One key stable figure whose role has been significantly ramped up in recent months is Sophie, Countess of Wessex, with the 55-year-old reported to be stepping up because the Queen counts her as one of her trusted family members.
‘[The Queen] finds Sophie’s presence soothing,’ a source told The Sun. ‘She is trusted and relied on by the Queen in a way I couldn’t say applied to the Duchess of Cambridge or the Duchess of Cornwall.’
The source continued: ‘She is like another daughter to Her Majesty, they are that close.’
This has been evident in recent months, with the Queen choosing Sophie to represent her on key events and publicly supporting Sophie’s work on social media.
This was evident this week, as the Queen shared multiple posts around Sophie and her work to her Twitter account.
The Queen shared photographs in particular of Sophie’s entry into Kate Middleton’s photography competition.
Sharing Sophie’s photograph of Ali, a volunteer packing deliveries in the Shah Jahan Mosque in Woking, on Twitter, the Queen added a quote from Sophie: ‘Ali’s smile captures the enthusiasm for helping others that is so evident amongst the volunteers.’
Well, that’s lovely.
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Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.