Queen Elizabeth II began her new year on a bitter note after Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle unveiled plans to step down from their role weeks after Prince Andrew was forced to give up his career due to his friendship with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein. On Tuesday, the Royal Family took yet another hit after Her Majesty's grandson, Peter Phillips, and his Canadian-born wife Autumn announced their amicable divorce after 12 years of marriage. Speaking to CBC, royal expert Katie Nicholl suggested the latest royal shakeup could force the Queen to "reassess" the future of the Royal Family.
Ms Nicholl said: "It’s forcing the institution to look at itself, to reassess its future.
"What is the monarchy going to look like now that we are three senior royals down?"
Peter and Autumn Phillips did not carry out engagements on behalf of the Queen but the former couple and their daughters, Isla and Savannah, were often seen at family events such as Trooping the Colour alongside Her Majesty and other senior members of the Royal Family.
But the Queen's eldest grandson last month faced some criticism after he was discovered to have filmed an advert on Chinese TV for state-owned milk firm ‘Bright Dairies’.
JUST IN: Prince Harry warning: Duke’s desire to ‘make Meghan happy’ will damage royal – shock claim
The Queen will be forced to "reassess" the future of the Royal Family, Nicholl suggested (Image: GETTY)
Peter and Autumn Phillips announced their split after 12 years of marriage (Image: GETTY)
The departure of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, as well as the Duke of York, is set to have remaining royals to pick up the pace to ensure engagements are met.
After talks with the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William, Prince Harry agreed to renounce his honorary military titles and it is now believed Princess Anne, who is already an honorary Rear Admiral, will be bestowed her nephew's titles in the coming months.
Prince William and Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge appear to expanded their availability and have been spotted on over 10 outings each since the start of the year.
Kensington Palace on Tuesday confirmed the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will also be undertaking