Why Prince George Didn’t Attend Wedding of Godfather Duke of Westminster – PEOPLE

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Prince George didn’t travel north for the wedding of his godfather the Duke of Westminster.

On June 7, the 10-year-old royal was not among the 400 guests, including his father Prince William and the Prince of Wales’ cousin Princess Eugenie, at the high-society wedding of his godfather Hugh Grosvenor to Olivia Henson at Chester Cathedral.

Although a reason wasn’t disclosed, Prince George’s absence might have been due to a practical reason: the nuptials took place on a school day. Earlier in the week, Prince William revealed that his 9-year-old daughter, Princess Charlotte, was taking exams at school, and her big brother may also be testing this week.

In addition, Prince William was busy at the church ceremony for his friend’s wedding, acting as an usher. Kate Middleton, who is undergoing cancer treatment, did not attend the ceremony, which could have been another reason their son couldn’t join the festivities.

The Duke of Westminster speaks at the official handover of the Defence and National Rehabilitation Centre n the Stanford Hall Estate in Nottinghamshire on June 21, 2018.

OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images

Hugh, now 33, was revealed as one of Prince George’s godparents in October 2013. The honor continued a tradition between his family and the British royals, as the Duke of Westminster is a godson of King Charles, and his mother, Natalia, is a godmother to Prince William. 

“Godparents are among the most important people at a christening, who make big promises to encourage their godchild to grow in faith and commit to helping them understand how to live their life in a Christian way,” the Church of England states.

“Every child should have at least three godparents, two of the same sex and at least one of the opposite sex to your child. Although there is no official maximum number of godparents, three or four is usual,” the church adds — though Prince George has seven! 

Prince William and Kate asked Hugh, William’s cousin Zara, William and Prince Harry‘s former private secretary Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton, friends Oliver Baker, Emilia Jardine-Paterson and William van Cutsem and Princess Diana‘s friend Julia Samuel to be godparents to their first child.

According to a royal source, the group of godparents was picked because William and Kate “wanted to include family and friends and reflect their life on both sides.”

Prince George isn’t the only member of the next generation to call Hugh his godfather. The Duke of Westminster is also a godfather to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle‘s 5-year-old son, Prince Archie.

Prince George, Prince Louis and Princess Charlotte travel by carriage at Trooping the Colour on June 17, 2023.

Karwai Tang/WireImage

PEOPLE confirms that the Duke of Sussex, 39, was invited to the Duke of Westminster’s wedding on June 7, which was anticipated as the society wedding of the year. However, there was an acknowledgment on both sides that it would be difficult for Harry to attend.

It was an “understanding between the two friends,” a source describes the conversation between the two dukes. An insider close to the bride and groom tells PEOPLE that Prince Harry and the Duke of Westminster mutually agreed.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex relocated to her home state of California after stepping back from their royal roles in 2020, and no longer use their former Frogmore Cottage home as a base for U.K. stays.

Prince Harry sends “his love and support and admiration for the couple” for their wedding day, the source tells PEOPLE.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at State Governor House in Lagos, Nigeria, on May 12, 2024.


Prince George may have missed this wedding, but he has plenty of experience with special roles in the events.

Prince William and Princess Kate’s eldest son served as a page boy on several occasions, being in the bridal party for the nuptials of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews in May 2017, Prince Harry and Meghan in May 2018, Kate’s close friend Sophie Carter and Robert Snuggs in September 2018 and Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank in October 2018. George’s little sister, Princess Charlotte, also served as a bridesmaid at all four celebrations, while Prince Louis wasn’t involved as he was born in April 2018.

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Prince George and King Charles on the balcony of Buckingham Palace on the King’s May 6, 2023 coronation day.

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Prince George also stepped into the spotlight as a Page of Honor on his grandfather King Charles’ coronation day in May 2023, making history as the youngest future king to play an official role at a crowning ceremony.

“His parents are very excited and delighted that he is a page,” a spokesperson for the Prince and Princess of Wales told PEOPLE before the big day. “It’s something that his parents have thought long and hard about and are very much looking forward to — and I’m sure George is too.”

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