Queen jokes grandson Louis is ‘quite a handful’ during Isle of Man visit

Queen jokes grandson Louis is ‘quite a handful’ during Isle of Man visit

The Queen joked her grandson Louis was “quite a handful” as she met crowds of well-wishers on a visit to the Isle of Man.

Camilla made the comment as she greeted people outside Douglas Borough Council on Wednesday after presenting the letters patent, officially conferring city status on Douglas.

Meeting 38-year-old Rachael Hughes and her 15-week-old twin boys Louie and Oliver, the Queen said: “I have a Louis grandson… quite a handful”.

Ms Hughes said the Queen had come over to “admire” the boys in their matching blue outfits, adding: “[She] asked their names and said it gets easier when they are two.

“It was so lovely to see her. She is doing a great job and she looks fabulous.”

Camilla has three grandsons, twin boys Gus and Louis by her daughter Laura Lopes, and 13-year-old Frederick, by son Tom Parker Bowles.

She also has a step-grandson Prince Louis, the lively youngest son of the Prince and Princess of Wales.

The Queen, dressed in navy adorned with a sapphire and diamond brooch, made a flying visit to the isle on behalf of her husband the King, saying he was “so sorry” he could not be there himself to celebrate the “extremely special occasion”.

Queen Camilla visit to Isle of Man
Queen Camilla (right) meets Diana Parkes CBE who founded Joanna Simpson Foundation, during a visit to Government House, in Onchan, Isle of Man (Owen Humphreys/PA)

She thanked residents for their “warm welcome” before reading out a speech prepared by the King which acknowledged the late Queen Elizabeth II and thanked his wife for reading his words.

It read: “The granting of your city status is particularly special to me, as your letters patent are the only ones in existence that hold both my signature and that of my late mother.

“Therefore, ladies and gentlemen, as you mark your well-deserved status as one of the newest cities in the British Isles, and the only one of the Crown Dependencies, I would like to offer on behalf of my wife and myself, my heartfelt congratulations and my very best wishes for the future.”

Crowds gathered to meet the Queen after she unveiled a City Hall plaque, waving flags, handing her bouquets of flowers and shaking hands.

Queen Camilla visit to Isle of Man
Queen Camilla unveils a commemorative plaque outside of Douglas Borough Council after conferring city status on the Borough of Douglas (Chris Jackson/PA)

After leaving the borough council, the Queen took an eight-minute drive to Government House in Onchan, the official residence of the Lieutenant Governor and his family, where she met community groups including the swimming club the Manx Bluetits and the RNLI, which was formed on the island.

She was handed gift bags from the RNLI and The Fynoderee Distillery, which produced commemorative spirits to mark the lifeboat charity’s 200th anniversary this year.

The Queen then greeted schoolchildren who had gathered to see her, asking them if they were excited for the upcoming Easter holidays, what their plans were and if they were going to take part in Easter egg hunts.

Camilla also spent around 45 minutes with Diana Parkes CBE, an Isle of Man resident who set up the Joanna Simpson Foundation in memory of her daughter who was murdered by her estranged husband, before leaving Government House.

Douglas was one of eight towns to be granted city status in May 2022 as part of the celebrations for the late Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee, alongside Bangor, Colchester, Doncaster, Dunfermline, Milton Keynes, Stanley and Wrexham.