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Website Last Updated - 06 Feb 2016

(from Sept 2006)

Lord Louis Mountbatten

1960 - Marriage of Pamela to David Hicks & death of Edwina

Personal tragedy came to Mountbatten in February 1960. Having celebrated the marriage of their youngest daughter (The Lady Pamela Mountbatten) to the designer and interior decorator, David Hicks, FRSA (1929-1998) on 13th January 1960 at Romsey Abbey, but the subsequent unexpected death of Edwina, dealt a heavy blow to Mountbatten and his family.  

Edwina had arrived in Jesselton, North Borneo (now Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia) on 18th February 1960, and although not being well, she carried on with her usual dedication, fulfilling a heavy list of engagements on behalf of both the St John’s Ambulance  Brigade - of which she was its Superintendent-in-Chief, and the Save the Children Fund, of which she was its President.  Despite the clear symptoms of overwork, Edwina carried on and worked through her illness. Edwina, The Countess Mountbatten of Burma was found dead on the morning of 21st February 1960 - she was aged just 59yrs old.  On 25th February 1960, Edwina’s coffin was taken from Romsey Abbey to Portsmouth - for Edwina had asked to be buried at sea, which surprised many as she had never cared for the sea.

Lady Pamela Mountbatten

and David Hicks on their wedding day outside Romsey Abbey

Following Edwina’s death, Mountbatten threw himself into his work and continued to work on his reorganisation of Britain’s defence.  His experience as Supreme Allied Commander had shown him that there were great advantages in closer co-ordination between the Royal Navy, the Army and the Royal Air Force - and being an officer in all three services was never forgotten and this became his immediate focus to get through the tragedy of the death of his wife.  He cast a lonely figure without Edwina, but even without her “sparkle” his sense of duty compelled him keep going and not give up the work they had started together.

A distraught Mountbatten salutes Edwina’s coffin onboard HMS Wakeful

1962 - 1970


Countess Mountbatten of Burma