The Earl and Countess of Wessex have taken a break from royal duties and jetted off for a family holiday in the exclusive Swiss ski resort of St Moritz.
Prince Edward and his wife Sophie, both 55, appeared in excellent spirits as they spent time with their children Lady Louise Windsor, 16, and James, Viscount Severn, 12, on the slopes over the weekend.
A half-term jaunt to the exclusive resort, which recently hosted the star-studded wedding of Dasha Zhukova and billionaire shipping magnate Stavros Niarchos, has become a family tradition for the Wessexes, who are all experienced skiers.
Neither Sophie no Edward have royal engagements scheduled for this week so it is thought they could remain in Switzerland for the rest of the week before flying back to the UK in time for the children to start school on Monday.
The delightful family photographs will bring great joy to the Queen, who was dealt yet another blow today when her nephew, David Linley, announced he has separated from his wife Serena, just days after grandson Peter Phillips’ split from wife Autumn was made public.
The Wessex winter Olympics! The Earl and Countess of Wessex are spending the half-term holidays in St Moritz, pictured
Wrapping up: Sophie Wessex looked chic in a black padded coat and a chic silk scarf as she joined her husband on the slopes
Experienced: Lady Louise Windsor, 16, has joined her parents at the glitzy resort of St Moritz over the weekend
Father-son time: The Earl of Wessex joined his son, James, Viscount Severn, on the chair lift in St Moritz over the weekend
Family time: Prince Edward, centre, with James, Viscount Severn (left) and Sophie Wessex, right, on the slopes
Ready to go! Lady Louise Windsor, 16, put on her helmet, left, before grabbing her skis, right, as she joined her parents
Daddy’s girl! Lady Louise Windsor, right, and Prince Edward, left, were spent quality time together on the slopes in St Moritz
Let’s snow! Sophie Wessex, pictured left and right, is taking a well-earned break from a busy schedule of royal engagements
Family favourite! A jaunt to St Moritz has become a tradition for the Wessexes. Pictured, Sophie and Lady Louise in St Moritz
Half-term holiday! Lady Louise Windsor with her mother the Countess of Wessex, left, and heading out on the slopes, right
The more the merrier! The Wessexes were joined by family friends. Pictured, Sophie with a little girl on the chair lift
Family first: The Countess of Wessex, Lady Louise Windsor, James, Viscount Severn and Prince Edward in St Moritz
The family ski trip will be a welcome break for Sophie and Edward, who have had a busy start to the year in the wake of Megxit and Prince Andrew’s departure. The couple are thought to be in the running to take on more responsibility in light of the seismic resignations.
Last month the couple were called upon to co-host a Buckingham Palace reception with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in the absence of the Queen, Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall.
However any thoughts of their busy schedule appeared far from the royal couple’s minds as they headed out on the slopes on Sunday.
The family pulled up to the bottom of the mountain in black 4x4s and put on their helmets and goggles before heading up on the chair lift.
The Countess of Wessex wrapped up against the cold in a black coat and contrasting white trousers with a red stripe down the side of the leg.
She added an elegant splash of colour to the ski ensemble with a chic printed blue silk scarf tied around her neck.
Up and away! Prince Edward shared a chair lift with his 12-year-old son James, Viscount Severn, over the weekend
All the gear: James, Viscount Severn, showed off a stylish black and red jacket from pricey label Spyder in St Moritz
Winter break: The Earl of Wessex and his 16-year-old daughter Lady Louise Windsor enjoyed a day on the slopes
She’s a snow pro! Lady Louise Windsor is an experienced skier and has joined her family on a number of snowy getaways
Off they go! Lady Louise, centre, was followed by her father Prince Edward, right, as they headed onto the slope
Girl power! Lady Louise Windsor, left, and Sophie, Countess of Wessex, right, on the slopes of St Moritz on Sunday
Poised for action: The Countess of Wessex was ready to go as she spent time with her family in St Moritz over the weekend
No help needed: Lady Louise Windsor carried her own skis as she joined Edward, left, and Sophie, right, on the slopes
On the move: Prince Edward and Lady Louise Windsor carried their skis after pausing at the top of a slope in St Moritz
Meanwhile Prince Edward stood out from the group in a vibrant red Colmar jacket and black trousers. He shared a chair lift up the mountain with his 12-year-old son, James, Viscount Severn, before heading onto the slope with his daughter Lady Louise by his side.
The royal children, often praised for their exemplary manners and comportment, looked as comfortable as their parents on the snow.
Lady Louise, dressed in a navy jacket and fitted black trousers, appeared in particularly good spirits to be back out on the snow.
Leading by example: The Countess of Wessex prepares to head off down the slope in St Moritz on Sunday
Mix and match: Sophie Wessex proved she isn’t precious and wore mismatching jacket and trousers to ski with her family
Twice as nice: The Countess of Wessex wore sunglasses and ski goggles for her outing in St Moritz on Sunday, pictured
Power stance: Sophie and Lady Louise, left, ready to go at the top of the slope. Right, the Countess of Wessex on Sunday
Royal run! The Earl of Wessex prepared to set off with his family as they enjoyed quality time on the slopes on Sunday
Dream team: The Earl of Wessex, left, and the Countess of Wessex, right, are taking time away from their royal duties
Racing stripes: The Countess of Wessex’s white trousers featured a contrasting coloured stripe down the side, pictured
Ed in red! The Earl of Wessex carried his skis as he prepared to hit the slopes with his family on Sunday
Her younger brother James, who is rarely in the public spotlight, proved he had serious ski credentials by donning a red and black jacket from upmarket label Spyder.
The royal family were joined by family friends for the outing.
St Moritz is something of a celebrity haunt for die-hard skiers, frequented by the likes of John Travolta, Liz Hurley and Ivana Trump, as well as a string of royals.
Most recently Princess Beatrice and her fiance Edo were seen arriving in the resort ahead of the wedding of close friend Dasha Zhukova to billionaire shipping magnate Stavros Niarchos.
Also joining the royals skiing were Monaco royal Pierre Casiraghi, grandson to Grace Kelly and art dealer Vito Schnabel from New York.
Look at that! The little girl with the Countess of Wessex pointed something out to the royal on the chair lift, pictured
Light and breezy: The Countess of Wessex smiled as she prepared to hit the slopes with her family over the weekend
High above: The Countess of Wessex accompanied the little girl on the chair lift to the top of the slope on Sunday
Sophie on the slopes! The Countess of Wessex gets ready (left) and with her husband Prince Edward in St Moritz (right)
Quality time: James, Viscount Severn, chatted happily to his father Prince Edward on the chair lift in St Moritz
Taking in the view: The royal father and son looked out across the stunning landscape of St Moritz while on the chair lift
Royal in red: Prince Edward stood out from the group in a vibrant red Colmar jacket and black trousers, pictured
Helping hand: The Countess of Wessex was helped out of the car as the family arrived at the mountain in St Moritz
Relaxed: The Earl of Wessex flashed a smile, right, as he and Lady Louise, pictured, got ready at the bottom of the mountain
Layered up: Prince Edward wore a knitted jumper over a zip-up and under his Colmar coat as he headed up to the slopes
Shared passion: Prince Edward, left, and Sophie, right, both enjoy skiing and have instilled their passion in their children
Splash of colour: The Countess of Wessex looked typically chic and tied a vibrant blue silk scarf around her neck, pictured
All in the details: The Countess of Wessex wore mauve nail polish and an Apple Watch on her wrist (left) for the outing
Ready to help: The royal family were met by a ski worker who was on hand to help Sophie and Louise as they arrived, pictured