Skip to main contentSkip to footer
Digital Cover royalty

Introducing the royal family's inspiring eco warrior Marina Windsor as she talks desire to protect the planet

The Duke of Kent's granddaughter says we're in a 'climate emergency' and need to take 'serious action'

Ainhoa Barcelona
Content Managing Editor
21 April 2024
Share this:

She uses her public platform and influence to highlight the need to protect our oceans, but Princess Eugenie – who dresses her adorable young sons August and Ernest, in whale-themed outfits – isn't the only royal paving the way for marine conservation. 

Equally dedicated to the cause is Marina Windsor, granddaughter of the Duke of Kent who is the first cousin of Eugenie's late grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II.

And as she sits down for an exclusive interview and photoshoot with HELLO! at Brown's Hotel in Mayfair, the 31-year-old events manager tells how she shares the same green credentials as her royal relative.

Marina Windsor digital cover
Marina Windsor is one of the most eco-conscious members of the royal family

Her work with Blue Marine Foundation

"Eugenie is an amazing ambassador and does a lot of incredible work for Blue Marine Foundation," she says, referring to the ocean conservation charity the Princess joined three years ago.

Founded in 2010, Blue Marine Foundation has a simple yet critical vision: to restore the sea's health, to protect vital marine habitats, and to address overfishing – one of the world's worst environmental problems. Among its other high-profile ambassadors are Sienna Miller, Stephen Fry, sisters Poppy and Cara Delevingne, and Marina's younger sibling, 28-year-old Lady Amelia Windsor.

Not only are the eco-conscious sisters big supporters of Blue Marine Foundation, they both share the same passion for fashion and sustainable clothing.

"We're best friends and are very close," says Marina. 

Amelia has, likewise, previously told HELLO! how "very proud" she is of her big sister and her charity role.

"She's always full of amazing stories and tells me excitedly about what's going on," she said.

Marina and Amelia Windsor seen in 2022 during a holiday to Cornwall© Instagram
"We're best friends," Marina says of her younger sister Amelia

A love for sustainable fashion

While Amelia is known for her love of ethical fashion and has modelled for top fashion houses including Chanel, Dior, Bulgari, and Armani, Marina is also "100 per cent" committed to sustainable fashion.

As she sifts through a rail of clothes in the vibrant Sir Paul Smith suite at Brown's Hotel, she chooses pieces from a plethora of sustainable labels, instantly drawn to stylish pieces by Reformation, Stine Goya, Mondo Corsini, and Needle & Thread. 

Marina has also brought along her trusty and much-worn boots designed by her friend Penelope Chilvers, a brand famously backed by the Princess of Wales

Despite previously saying she had no plans to forge a career in modelling, having modelled outfits designed by the late couturier Hardy Amies when she was 18, Marina looks effortlessly chic in our exclusive shoot, a natural in front of the camera and beaming from ear to ear.  

Marina Windsor poses for HELLO! shoot
Marina says: "I try to shop from charity shops, vintage shops, sustainable brands, and often I borrow clothes off friends"

On her green styling credentials, she says: "Fast fashion is incredibly destructive to our planet. I try to shop from charity shops, vintage shops, sustainable brands, and often I borrow clothes off friends. That's a pretty good way of doing it. That's what my friends and I are trying to do a lot more. And just keeping things for longer and buying less stuff, less consumerism where possible."

She even borrows vintage pieces from her mother, Canadian historian Dr Sylvana Tomaselli. 

"I think the generation above us kept their clothes so well. I'm trying to do the same thing. My mother still has some clothing in perfect condition from her twenties. I'm very lucky as she very generously lends me things. She has a great sense of style."

Marina Windsor poses for HELLO! shoot
She also borrows vintage pieces from her mother, who has a "great sense of style"

Passion for travel

On her mother's side, Marina has Canadian, Austrian, French, and Italian roots. She was also fortunate enough to spend part of her Modern Languages university degree abroad in France and Brazil. 

It was her experience of swimming in bioluminescent plankton and enjoying the amazing nature of the Costa Verde, close to Rio de Janeiro, that fostered her love of the ocean. 

"Those were some wonderful moments. I wish I could do it all over again," she says. "It's such a privilege to travel and to be able to see beautiful parts of the world and to see how amazing this planet is. And I think it encourages you even more to want to do something to protect the people, the animals, and the nature that exists on it."

Marina Windsor poses for HELLO! shoot
On the royal's bucket list are Mongolia, Iceland, Indonesia, and the Philippines

While she would love to return to Brazil, perhaps next year for COP 30, Marina has an ever-evolving bucket list to tick off. "The bucket list always changes," she laughs. "I would love to go to Mongolia, to Iceland to see the Icelandic ponies, to Indonesia, and to the Philippines. We've got some amazing projects all around the world and so I learn about different places I'd like to visit through that a lot."

Despite a passion for travelling, Marina is very much a homebird at heart. London is her home for now.

"For now, I'm grateful for and enjoying the gift of being near friends and family. But I loved living abroad and I think you can get so much out of it if you get the opportunity to, so it would be amazing to do that again one day." 

Marina Windsor poses for HELLO! shoot
"I'm grateful for and enjoying the gift of being near friends and family," she says

Her 'amazing' grandfather

At 88 years old, her grandfather is still involved with over 140 charities and organisations, and still undertakes numerous engagements each year, both in the UK and the Commonwealth. 

Earlier this month, he was cheered and applauded by troops as he attended his final Black Sunday parade as Colonel of the Scots Guards, handing over the role to the Duke of Edinburgh after 50 years of service.

The Duke of Kent leaves the Scots Guards' Black Sunday Parade at the Wellington Barracks © PA Images
The Duke of Kent attends his final Black Sunday parade as Colonel of the Scots Guards, handing over the role to the Duke of Edinburgh after 50 years of service

"I love my grandpa," Marina smiles. "He's an amazing man and he's definitely inspired me."

Philanthropy in the royal family

This sense of duty and service runs through the royal family, so it's no wonder that charity work and philanthropy are part of Marina's DNA, particularly a commitment to conservation.

She is following in the green footsteps of previous generations, from the late Queen who instigated the planting of more than three million trees as part of her legacy, to King Charles who is widely considered a pioneer of his time for his early warnings about climate change – a message Marina very much echoes. 

The future of our planet

Prior to working at Blue Marine Foundation, she spent over two years at Big Give, a non-profit website that matches donors with charities. 

For one week until Thursday 25 April, Big Give is doubling donations to charities taking part in their Green Match Fund, one of which is Marina's employer. The aim is to raise £6million for the green charities in just one week.

Aeolian islands© Danny Copeland
Blue Marine Foundation's campaign with Big Give this year is dedicated to making the Aeolian Islands in Italy a marine-protected area

"Big Give is the most incredible charity," she says. "It was such an honour to work there. They're an incredible team and they support so many amazing charities and enable them to do the work they do. I couldn't sing their praises more.

"Blue Marine Foundation is an amazing, inspiring, and energising organisation. I'd followed them for a while from a distance; incidentally, when I was at Big Give, they would take part in the Green Match Fund campaigns, so I got to know them a bit more through that and just always really admired the work they did. They've led some very successful campaigns to change policy on overfishing and basically protect the ocean in so many different ways.

Seagrass summer school
"Right now, we're in a climate emergency, and it's pretty urgent to try and help protect the planet, our ocean, and each other," said Marina

"And they really align with my values because I'm very passionate about anything to do with the environment and the planet. I was always very keen to work somewhere that was really focused on helping mitigate the climate crisis in one way or another. I've learned so much since being there and I'm surrounded by incredible marine biologists and brilliant people who are protecting the ocean."

"I think we probably all want to help in our own ways, don't we?" she muses. "Right now, we're in a climate emergency, and it's pretty urgent to try and help protect the planet, our ocean, and each other, if we want a planet for our future generations to live on. We've got to take serious action."

Marina Windsor poses for HELLO! shoot
"I'm very passionate about anything to do with the environment and the planet," she says

To donate and have your donation doubled, search for Blue Marine Foundation at before noon on April 25.

Photos by Liz McAulay

Styling by Michelle Kelly at Carol Hayes

Hair and makeup by Gia Mills 

Shot at Sir Paul Smith Suite, Brown's Hotel, London

Sign up to HELLO Daily! for the best royal, celebrity and lifestyle coverage

By entering your details, you are agreeing to HELLO! Magazine User Data Protection Policy. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, please click here.