Princess Claire of Belgium
|Is||Geodesist Princess Noble|
|Birth||18 January 1974, Bath, United Kingdom|
Princess Claire of Belgium (born Claire Coombs on 18 January 1974) is a British-Belgian land surveyor. She has been married to Prince Laurent since 2003 and is the sister-in-law of King Philippe of Belgium.
She is the daughter of Nicholas John Coombs (Bath, 14 April 1938), a British-born businessman, and his Belgian wife, Nicole Eva Gabrielle Thérèse, née Mertens (Ixelles, 20 June 1951). She has an older sister, Joanna, and a younger brother, Matthew. Her family relocated to Dion-le-Val, near to Brussels in francophone Wallonia in 1977. She has therefore lived in Belgium since age 3.
Marriage & children
On 12 April 2003, she married Prince Laurent of Belgium, the second son and youngest child of the King Albert II of Belgium and Queen Paola of Belgium. The civil ceremony was held at Brussels Town Hall, and the religious ceremony at the Cathedral of Saints Michael and Gudula. The couple have three children: Princess Louise Sophie Mary, born 6 February 2004 at Saint Luc University Hospital in Woluwe-Saint-Lambert Prince Nicolas Casimir Marie, born 13 December 2005 (twin) at Saint Luc University Hospital in Woluwe-Saint-Lambert Prince Aymeric Auguste Marie, born 13 December 2005 (twin) at Saint Luc University Hospital in Woluwe-Saint-Lambert
Unlike her two sisters-in-law, Queen Mathilde and Princess Astrid, Princess Claire has no defined official role. She occasionally appears in public accompanying her husband, generally in support of environmental causes or animal charities. She is also a leading patron of the Brussels Choral Society, which sang at the religious part of her marriage ceremony. She is also active in organisations related to the United Kingdom in Belgium. She is a member of the Board of Trustees at the British School of Brussels and actively attends charitable and commemorative events hosted by the British Ambassador to Belgium.
Titles and styles
18 January 1974 – 12 April 2003: Miss Claire Louise Coombs 12 April 2003 – present: Her Royal Highness Princess Claire of Belgium Claire Coombs received the title Princess of Belgium from the King ten days before her marriage, by Royal Decree of 1 April 2003 (effective as of the date of the wedding, on 12 April 2003).
National honours Belgium: Grand Cordon of the Order of Leopold Foreign honours Netherlands: Grand Cross of the Order of the Crown Norway: Grand Cross of the Order of Merit Portugal: Grand Cross of the Order of Infante Henry