Why Did Queen Elizabeth Want Camilla Parker Bowles Gone From the Royal Family?

Camilla Parker Bowles has been known to be a bit of a controversial figure in the royal family. She rose to prominence as the woman Prince Charles was seeing while he was married to Princess Diana. Though, these days she is his wife and other royals also seem to get along well with her.

There definitely was a time when Parker Bowles’ relationship with the royal family — especially, Queen Elizabeth — was not a positive one. In fact, Queen Elizabeth reportedly wanted Parker Bowles gone at some point. While the queen did not want Parker Bowles to marry Prince Charles, she eventually came around to support the couple.

The story of Camilla Parker Bowles’ famous affair with Prince Charles

Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles
Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Prince Charles and the now-duchess reportedly met in the early 1970s and hit it off right away. They began dating shortly after. However, their relationship would be short-lived as Prince Charles’ family did not approve of him marrying her. She was not aristocratic enough for a future king, and rumor has it that her father also did not want his daughter to marry Prince Charles.

When Prince Charles went away to the navy in 1973, she ended up marrying Andrew Parker Bowles. Several years later, Prince Charles also married Lady Diana Spencer, who would become known around the world as Princess Diana.

It was evident to Princess Diana during her relationship that Prince Charles was still in love with Parker Bowles. The prince and his former girlfriend would meet and eventually started an affair with one another.

When the public found out about the affair in the 1990s, the royal family became caught in a media firestorm. Both Prince Charles and Parker Bowles divorced their respective spouses a few years later.

Why Queen Elizabeth initially wanted Camilla Parker Bowles gone from the royal family

After Princess Diana’s death in 1997, Prince Charles focused more on his sons than his relationship with Parker Bowles. However, it did not take long before he decided to become serious with Parker Bowles. The prince even told his family that he wanted Parker Bowles in his life and this was “non-negotiable.”

However, Queen Elizabeth did not want Parker Bowles to be associated with the royal family. “The Queen had wanted her gone before Diana’s death and felt no differently after it,” said Penny Junor, a royal expert.

Junor continued: “It was nothing personal. She had been very fond of Camilla in all the years she had been married to Andrew Parker Bowles – but it was Camilla who had been responsible, wittingly or not, for all the disasters that had befallen Charles since his marriage.”

Other reports also shared that Queen Elizabeth once called Parker Bowles “a wicked woman” before telling Prince Charles: “I want nothing to do with her.”

How Queen Elizabeth eventually supported the union of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles

It took time for Queen Elizabeth to become accepting of Parker Bowles.

At first, while Prince Charles would show up to events with Parker Bowles, Queen Elizabeth would purposely skip out on going to places where the couple was present as she did not want to acknowledge their relationship.

The queen eventually met Parker Bowles formally in 2000 at a birthday party at Highgrove House. Prince Charles, his mother, and his partner all reportedly sat at the same table.

By the time 2005 rolled around, Queen Elizabeth had given her approval for Prince Charles to marry Parker Bowles. The public also became more accepting of the controversial couple.

It is safe to say that, these days, Queen Elizabeth and Parker Bowles’ relationship is not like before. The two women seem to get along, and the queen even gave Parker Bowles a positive acknowledgement when she congratulated Prince Charles on his 70th birthday.