Friday, April 22, 2022

Jonathan Derek Morley 1941-2022

 Jonathan Derek Morley, who died 18 April, 2022, aged 80, was the husband of Davina Sheffield, who was, as one of 'Charlie's Angels' in the 1970s tipped as a possible bride of the Prince of Wales. Mr Morley was a brother of Miranda, Duchess of Beaufort.

He was born at Bath in 1941, son of Brigadier Michael Frederick Morley, MBE [1911-90], of Biddlestone Manor, Chippenham, Witlshire, and his wife the former Primrose Elizabeth Gordon [1912-97], of the Gordon family, of Boveridge Park, Salisbury. He had an elder brother, Michael Frederick David Morley [1939-98], and two sisters, Susan [later Spence], and Miranda Elisabeth [born 1947], who married 2 June, 2000, as his second wife, the 11th Duke of Beaufort [1928-2017], of Badminton House, Gloucestershire.

Jonathan Morley married firstly, 6 September, 1966 [div 1973], the Hon Kirsty Jane Aitken [born 22 June, 1947], eldest daughter of Sir John William Maxwell Aitken, 2nd Baronet [the disclaimed 2nd Baron Beaverbrook] [1910-85], and his second wife, and as her second husband, the former Ursula Jane Kenyon-Slaney [1920-2012]; he married 2ndly, 21 December, 1981, Davina Mary Sheffield [born 1 March, 1951], scion of the Sheffield baronets, daughter of George Berkeley Sheffield [1910-68], and his wife the former Hon Agnes Wilson McGowan [who was murdered 11 March, 1976], daughter of the 1st Baron McGowan [1874-1961].

Jonathan's second wife, Davina Sheffield, had previously in 1975, been introduced to the Prince of Wales, and, on paper, the 24-year-old was certainly a great match for the Prince. The granddaughter of celebrated industrialist Lord McGowan, – she moved in the right circles and was a keen horsewoman. She was also undeniably the prettiest of ‘Charlie’s Angels’, as the press collectively dubbed the women he dated. However, when Davina was introduced to Charles for the first time she was already seeing someone else – Old Harrovian and powerboat racer James Beard. Detailing Charles’s romance with Davina in her 2005 book The Firm, royal expert Penny Junor said Davina initially turned down the Prince’s invite to have dinner with him because of Beard. But ‘[Charles] was so persistent that she eventually succumbed and the boyfriend soon fell by the wayside,’ she wrote. Unfortunately for the new couple, whom Junor described as being ‘very much in love’, the ex didn’t disappear completely. In fact, as rumours that Charles was going to propose began to circulate, Beard became a media target and he was duped by one reporter into sharing details of his relationship with Davina – revealing they’d ‘lived in sin’ together before she dated Prince Charles. This brought the 'royal' romance to an abrupt end. Five years later Jonathan Morley and Davina Sheffield wed in a register office ceremony.

Jonathan Morley leaves issue, two sons from his first marriage to Kirsty Aitken,  _ Dominic Max Michael Morley [born 1967], and Sebastian Finch Morley [born 1969], and three sons from his marriage to Davina Sheffield, Thomas George Jonathan [born 1983], Capt William Frederick Duncan Morley [born 1984], The Blues and Royals, and Henry Quintus Morley [born 1987].


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