Sophie Wessex has broken down in tears as she opened up about Prince Philip two months after he died.
The Countess said the Duke of Edinburgh’s passing had left a ‘giant-sized hole in our lives’ during a BBC interview with Naga Munchetty at St James’s Palace.
The 56-year-old, who is married to Prince Edward, choked up as she recalled taking a photograph of the Queen and Prince Philip in Scotland in 2003.
The picture, taken on top of the Coyles of Muick near Balmoral, was only released by Her Majesty after her husband died and was her favourite.
In an emotion and wide-ranging interview, recorded earlier this week, Sophie admitted the grieving process is going to take ‘a lot longer’ due to the pandemic.
She also opened up about her time during Covid restrictions, saying she had her own ‘lockdown wobbles’ where ‘I just couldn’t see an end to it’.
But she said it had made her a fan of Call of Duty, before quickly correcting herself and saying Line of Duty.
Meanwhile the Countess stressed the importance of her work talking about issues such as abuse and rape and them being used as a weapon in war.
The 56-year-old choked up as she recalled taking a photograph of the Queen and Prince Philip in Scotland in 2003 (pictured)
In an emotion interview, recorded earlier this week, Sophie (pictured with Ms Munchetty) admitted the grieving process is going to take ‘a lot longer’ due to the pandemic
The Royal (pictured at Philip’s funeral) was forced to pause as she struggled to hold back the tears as Ms Munchetty asked: ‘Are you okay?’
During the interview Sophie grew increasingly tearful while talking about the Duke of Edinburgh, who she was close to.
She spoke candidly about the photograph she took of the Queen and her father-in-law in Scotland in 2003.
She said: ‘We were lucky enough to go to Scotland for half term and I don’t know if you remember the photograph I took?
‘It was… yes… I was pregnant with Louise at the time and we went up there during half term.’
The Royal was forced to pause as she struggled to hold back the tears as Ms Munchetty asked: ‘Are you okay?’
She continued: ‘And just to be there, in that place… was an oh my god moment. So I think they’ll come and go. But you have to let them come and let them go.
‘But just talking to you now it’s a bit of an oh my goodness moment which you don’t necessarily expect and you don’t expect them to come.
‘I had the same when I lost my mother. You know I’d be fine, absolutely fine fine fine, then something happened or you’d hear a piece of music or you’d do something then suddenly you would, you know, get taken off at the knees.
‘So there will be lots of moments like that but it’s good to remember.’
She continued: ‘And just to be there, in that place… was an oh my god moment. So I think they’ll come and go. But you have to let them come and let them go’
Sophie Wessex donned a stunning floor length gown with a matching headpiece for the Royal Ascot yesterday
The Countess of Wessex (pictured with the monarch in 2019) has become the Queen’s ‘rock’ after Prince Philip’s death by ‘phoning at least once a day and ensuring she is fully supported’, a royal expert claimed
The photograph in Scotland showed the Queen and Prince Philip at one of their ‘happy places’.
They would go to the Coyles of Muick hills to walk and picnic throughout their long lives together.
Her Majesty, 95, so loved the place that she named one of her new corgi puppy after it.
The couple look blissfully happy in the shot and relaxed as they sit back in the heather.
The Queen was wearing her off duty Scottish dress of a woollen twinset, pearls and a tartan skirt, with Prince Philip in country casuals and a sun hat resting on his knee.
Sophie said the loss of the Duke in April had left a ‘giant-sized hole in our lives’ and the grieving process is going to take ‘a lot longer’ due to the pandemic.
She said: ‘Well he’s left a giant-sized hole in our lives. I think unfortunately the pandemic has slightly skewed things, inasmuch as it’s hard to spend as much time with the Queen as we would like to.
‘We’ve been trying to, but of course, it’s still not that easy. And of course the normal way of things isn’t normal yet, so we’re not necessarily doing the things that we would normally have done with him.
‘So I think the whole grieving process is probably likely for us to take a lot longer. It may be the same for many other families out there.
‘Because if you’re not living with somebody, 24/7, the immediate loss isn’t necessarily felt in the same way, as if somebody was in the house with you all the time.’
Sophie said the loss of the Duke in April had left a ‘giant-sized hole in our lives’ and the grieving process is going to take ‘a lot longer’ due to the pandemic. Pictured: The Royals on the Queen’s 90th birthday
Her Majesty’s daughter-in-law Sophie (pictured with the Queen in 2019), 56, has often been noted as the monarch’s ‘favourite’ family member and closest confidante
In the wide-ranging interview with BBC Radio 5, Sophie admitted to having her own ‘lockdown wobble’ as she struggled to ‘see an end to it’.
She said: ‘I think every now and then I certainly had the odd wobble, where I just couldn’t see an end to it I couldn’t visualise how this was all going to pan out.
‘Life, all the normal things that we could do, had just…it was like sand through your hands.
‘Nothing felt tangible anymore. It was the number of disappointments, I suppose. We all got very good at managing disappointment.
‘I think our whole foundation has been shaken by this. We’re putting so much faith in the scientists in coming up with vaccines, and goodness, I’m just in awe of what they’ve done. But we’re sort of holding our breath.
‘There will be more variants, we know that. Every time there is a new variant, we just have to hold our breath and hope that the vaccines are good enough to stand up against them. So, how am I? Like everybody else I suppose: just taking one day at a time.’
But in a touching moment, Sophie mistook the hit BBC TV show Line of Duty for the shooting game Call of Duty.
Ms Munchetty asked her what he programme of choice had been over the last year and a half.
The Countess said: ‘Good question. Call of Duty.’ The presenter asked: ‘Oh! Line of Duty?’ Sophie replied: ‘That’s the one.’
It was claimed earlier this week the Queen was also a fan of the police drama and would often chat with aides about the show’s never ending twists and turns.
In a touching moment, Sophie mistook the hit BBC TV show Line of Duty for the shooting game Call of Duty
Sophie continued: ‘I am so bad! I am so bad at remembering the names of anything, whether it comes to books, whether it comes to programmes, films, anything.
‘I’ll go, ”ooh you know that one with what’s his name?” I’m so bad at it. I’d never watched it and I started the first episode and that was it, I was hooked.’
She also claimed to have guessed who the mysterious H was before the show concluded.
She said: ‘I was really disappointed in myself for having guessed it. Because I was, yes … I kept on thinking ”It can’t be, it can’t be him but it’s got to be. There isn’t any other choice. There is no-one else that it could be”. I mean, it wasn’t long before the end. But it was long enough I think.’
The Countess also discussed the ongoing prevalence of rape and sexual violence as weapons of war in global conflicts.
She told Ms Munchetty: ‘I think the more conversations that take place, and the more confident girls and young women are to talk about these things and to call it out and to call out any kind of behaviour they’re not happy with, hopefully that might give them more confidence. The more people come forward, the more momentum it will hold.’
‘My children are different ages and different sexes, you have to measure how you talk about these things.
‘My daughter, she’s 17, and she’s very aware of this kind of thing. Her school have a lot of debates about all sorts of things whether it be to do with feminism or ethnic equality.
‘They are constantly talking about these things. She’s quite aware of the work I do with women, peacebuilders, and also the conflict-related sexual violence pieces as well.
‘We chat about it quite a lot and particularly, if I’ve been on a trip somewhere she wants to know where I’ve been and what I’ve been doing.’
She added: ‘She has a natural curiosity about it and it’s easier to have that conversation with her.
‘With my son, he’s 13 going on 14. It’s slightly harder to have that conversation about my work.
‘He’s at that age where he’s much more aware of girls around him and everything. But interestingly he’s quite conscious of this whole issue of inappropriate behaviour between girls and boys.
‘He does seem quite aware of it, and I think that’s partly to do with schools and partly what they chat about on social media.
‘I think it’s about having honest, open conversations as a family, but also hopefully in school settings as well.’
Sophie in January admitted hearing the stories of sexual violence survivors had taken her to ‘some very dark places’ during her work to raise awareness about their plight.
The countess committed herself to supporting the UK’s work helping victims of rape, sexual violence and exploitation in war on International Women’s Day in 2019.
In an address at a virtual UN event for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict in June 2020, Sophie said sexual violence in the home or during conflicts is likely to have ‘risen substantially’ during the pandemic.
She reaffirmed her commitment to champion the Women, Peace and Security agenda and the UK’s Preventing Sexual Violence in Conflict Initiative.
Earlier this month, the countess told the Telegraph the royals are ‘still a family no matter what happens’ following tensions earlier this year in the aftermath of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey.
Her BBC interview at St James’s Palace was earlier this week ahead of the International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in Conflict on June 19.