On Friday afternoon, the Royal Family attended the funeral of Her Majesty’s cousin, Lady Mary Clayton, in the Royal Chapel of All Saints, Windsor Great Park.
Born Mary Cecilia Leveson-Gower on 12th December 1917, Lady Mary was the daughter of Lady Rose Bowes-Lyon and her husband, William, 4th Earl of Granville. Mary’s mother was the elder sister of The Queen Mother, and served as godmother to Princess Margaret. This made Mary a first cousin to Queen Elizabeth, who is nine years her junior.
As The Queen’s cousin, Lady Mary was filled with stories about Her Majesty from the time when she was a Princess. In Sally Bedell Smith’s book, Elizabeth the Queen: The Life of a Modern Monarch, Mary recalls how The Queen “liked to imagine herself as a pony or a horse. When she was doing that and someone called her and she didn’t answer right away, she would then say, ‘I couldn’t answer you as a pony.’ ”
In 1956, The Queen’s cousin married Samuel Clayton, with whom she had two children, Gilbert and Rose. Lady Mary Clayton passed away on the 13th February 2014. At the time of her death, she was 96 years old, perpetuating the longevity of Bowes-Lyon women, just as The Queen Mother lived to be a hundred and one. Lady Mary is survived by both of her children.
In attendance at her funeral was Her Majesty, who, earlier that morning, had held an investiture ceremony at Windsor. She was accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, Princess Beatrice, who was representing her father, the Duke of York, and the Countess of Wessex, who was representing herself and her husband, the Earl of Wessex.