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Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex's family summer holiday plans

The couple are parents to Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn

Danielle Stacey

The Earl and Countess of Wessex carry out hundreds of royal engagements every year but, just like the rest of us, it's important for them to take a break and spend time as a family.

Prince Edward and Sophie reside at their sprawling Bagshot Park estate in Surrey for most of the year, but they also like to get away with their children, Lady Louise Windsor, 17, and James, Viscount Severn, 13.

In the past, the Wessexes have been spotted enjoying summer holidays abroad, including on Espalmador, a small privately-owned uninhabited island located just to the north of Formentera.

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The Earl and Countess also like to spend time with the Queen during her summer break at Balmoral and were among the first visitors at Her Majesty's Scottish estate last August.

Lady Louise and James were pictured enjoying a walk with their grandmother in the sprawling grounds of the castle.

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The Wessexes with their children, Lady Louise and James, in 2020

It's a big month for Lady Louise, who will receive her AS-Level results (the first full year of A-Level study) on 10 August. Teacher-assessed grades have replaced tests for 2021.

The royal teenager revealed during a public outing with her parents last September that she is studying English, History, Politics and Drama.

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The photo of the Queen and Prince Philip taken by the Countess of Wessex

While the Queen is likely to be surrounded by close family and friends throughout her stay at Balmoral, it's likely to be a poignant visit as it's her first summer without her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, by her side. Prince Philip passed away at the age of 99 in April.

On the eve of his funeral, a touching photo of the monarch and the Duke relaxing in the Scottish Highlands was released by Buckingham Palace. The informal snap was taken by the Countess of Wessex, as she joined her mother and father-in-law for a walk.

Speaking in an emotional interview with the BBC in June, Sophie recalls taking that particular photograph, saying: "We were lucky enough to go to Scotland at the half term, and I don't know if you remember the photograph I took of them."

"I was pregnant with Louise at the time. We went up there during half term and just to be there in that place, it was an 'Oh my God' moment." 

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