British Royal Family

Queen Elizabeth's cousin will marry in the Royal Family's first same-sex wedding

And in a break with tradition, his ex-wife will give him away.

By Alex Lilly

First we had Harry and Meghan's, and in October it'll be Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank's turn to tie the knot. But another member of the British Royal Family is getting married this year, and he'll be making history.

Queen Elizabeth's cousin, Lord Ivar Mountbatten, who was the first Royal Family member to come out as gay, is getting married to his long-term partner James Coyle at a small ceremony at his country estate in Devon, England. And this marriage is a momentous moment as it's the first ever same-sex marriage to occur within the British Royal Family.

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In a break from tradition, Lord Ivar's ex-wife and mother of his three daughters, Penny Mountbatten, will give him away.

Speaking to The Daily Mail, Penny said, "It was the girls' idea. It makes me feel quite emotional. I'm really very touched."

"Ivar is so much more relaxed these days. He's so much kinder. He's become a great cook."

"He probably wasn't even aware that by keeping his sexuality a secret it was really quite tormenting him."

"Now it's 'out' he's a completely different person. Everybody says they've never seen him happier."

Ivar and Penny were married for 16 years and share three daughters, Ella, 22, Alix, 20, and Luli, 15 and though they divorced in 2010, the two remain close.

Speaking about his upcoming wedding, Lord Ivar said, "I really wanted to do it for James. He hasn't been married. For me, what's interesting is I don't need to get married because I've been there, done that and have my wonderful children; but I'm pushing it because I think it's important for him. James hasn't had the stable life I have. I want to be able to give you that."

Lord Ivar Mountbatten (back row, far left) is one of Lady Louise Windsor's godparents.
Lord Ivar Mountbatten (back row, far left) is one of Lady Louise Windsor's godparents.

Lord Ivar is particularly close with Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex. He is also godfather to their eldest daughter, Lady Louise Windsor. However, they will be unable to attend the historic nuptials.

"Sophie and Edward know of our plans and are really excited for us. Sadly they can't come to the wedding. Their diaries are arranged months in advance and they're not around, but they adore James. Everyone adores him."

Congratulations to the happy couple!