Who Is Olivia Henson, Who Will Become the Duchess of Westminster When She Marries Hugh Grosvenor on June 7?

Henson draws ample comparisons to the Princess of Wales—and not just because they look alike.

Hugh Grosvenor and Olivia Henson
(Image credit: Grosvenor 2023)

You may not know the name Olivia Henson today—or maybe, if you’re really into British high society, you do—but you will certainly hear about her wedding in two days’ time, when Henson marries Hugh Grosvenor, 7th Duke of Westminster, on June 7.

Though Henson is certainly her own person, The Daily Mail’s Claudia Joseph wrote that there are ample similarities between Henson and the Princess of Wales—similarities that go beyond just a resemblance to one another. “The parallels between the two women are quite extraordinary—to the point where Olivia, 31, has been compared to a young version of the Princess of Wales, who is 12 years her senior,” Joseph wrote. The comparisons began as far back as April 23, 2023, when Henson and Grosvenor announced their engagement; now, as June 7 approaches, that day is shaping up to be “the society wedding of the decade,” Joseph asserted. 

Kate Middleton

Henson is oft-compared to the Princess of Wales, and not just for their physical similarities.

(Image credit: Getty)

Their upbringing was quite similar, as both women grew up with two siblings, a brother and a sister, in the Home Counties. (Kate grew up in the Berkshire villages of Bradfield Southend and Bucklebury, and Henson was raised 30 miles away in Longworth.) Both attended the exclusive Marlborough, where, if you’re wondering, fees will cost you £15,665 per term. “And Olivia’s lineage is even more aristocratic than Kate’s, too,” Joseph continued, adding “Even their family history is not dissimilar.” Kate’s mother, Carole, is related to the aristocratic Bowes-Lyons, the family of the late Queen Mother, and Kate is descended from 17th century nobleman Sir William Blakiston and his wife, Jane. (In fact, Joseph reported, Kate and her husband, Prince William, are actually 12th cousins once removed through the Blakiston lineage.)

Henson, too, “has aristocratic pedigree as well as royal connections,” Joseph wrote. “She is the elder daughter of Rupert Henson and his wife Caroline, who is a scion of the Hoare banking family and the Marquess of Bristol.” (Heck, even their mothers have similar names—Carole and Caroline.) Henson is also a descendant of John Manners, the 5th Duke of Rutland.

Hugh Grosvenor and Olivia Henson

The couple were introduced by mutual friends in October 2021 and announced their engagement in April 2023.

(Image credit: Victoria Tetley/Grosvenor 2024)

Come Friday, Henson herself will be a duchess—becoming the next Duchess of Westminster upon her wedding at Chester Cathedral. William will be an usher at the ceremony, and Prince George, who is the godson of the groom, is expected to be a pageboy. 

Prince Harry, also a good friend of Grosvenor, will not be attending, Marie Claire reported earlier today, nor will King Charles, the groom’s godfather, as the King will have been in Normandy the day prior to lead commemorations for the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landing. Kate, unfortunately, will also not be in attendance, as she continues to receive cancer treatment.

As for Harry specifically, People confirmed that the Duke of Sussex was invited to the Duke of Westminster’s wedding—Grosvenor is, after all, also godfather to Harry’s eldest, Prince Archie, in addition to being godfather to George—but that Harry declined as a part of an “understanding between the two friends.” While Harry reportedly sends “his love and support and admiration for the couple,” his attendance would have been complicated, not the least of which is his still tempestuous relationship with William. 

Hugh Grosvenor and Olivia Henson

Henson, seen here with Grosvenor, is well-educated and currently works as a senior account manager for an ethical food company.

(Image credit: Victoria Tetley/Grosvenor 2024)

But back to the bride: Henson graduated with a degree in Hispanic studies and Italian from Trinity College in Dublin and is now a senior account manager for the ethical food company Belazu. “However, her life will change the moment that she has a ring on her finger,” Joseph wrote, as the newly minted Duke and Duchess of Westminster plan to move to Cheshire after their big wedding.

Hugh Grosvenor and Olivia Henson

The couple will move to Cheshire after their wedding this weekend.

(Image credit: Victoria Tetley/Grosvenor 2024)

Henson and Grosvenor—who is known as “Hughie”—met in October 2021 through mutual friends, and became engaged two years later. Of their decision to move away from London after their wedding, Henson told Town & Country “It’s obviously a place where we will live, where we’ll be building our lives together. And we’re slowly transitioning to move up from London and be much more permanent here and really putting roots down. So actually, yes, it was a really easy decision in the end.”

Rachel Burchfield
Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.