The Crown: Who was Countess Mountbatten’s daughter and how did she die?

Netflix’sThe Crown has returned to the small screen with a fifth season and the introduction of several new characters.

Among them is Penelope Knatchbull, Countess Mountbatten of Burma, a close friend of the late Duke of Edinburgh and Queen Elizabeth II.

Such was the Countess’s relationship with the royal couple that she was one of just 30 guests who attended Prince Philip’s funeral in April 2021 during Covid-19 restrictions.

Born Penelope Meredith Mary Eastwood, she took on the title after she married Norton Knatchbull, 3rd Earl Mountbatten of Burmam, son and heir of the 2nd Countess of Mountbatten of Burma, in October 1979.

At the wedding, Lord Romsey’s second cousin, King Charles III, served as best man.

The couple have a son named Nicholas, 41, and a daughter named Lady Alexandra, 39.

They also had a daughter named Leonora, who passed away aged five.

How did Leonora Knatchbull pass away?

Norton and Penelope Knatchbull (Getty Images)
Norton and Penelope Knatchbull (Getty Images)

The couple’s youngest daughter, Leonora, died on 22 October 1991 from kidney cancer.

She is buried in the grounds of the family home, Broadlands, in Hampshire.

According to a report by Scottish newspaper The Herald at the time, Leonora was diagnosed after she became ill during a family holiday to Majorca, Spain in August 1990.

Diana, the Princess of Wales and the now King, Charles III, were also in Spain on holiday with the family at the time.

In her final days, Leonora was visited by Diana in hospital.

Over the course of 14 months, Leonora received multiple treatments for the cancer, including chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Her funeral was held at Romsey Abbey in Hampshire on 26 October 1991.

Leonora’s parents founded the charity Leonora Children’s Cancer Fund in her memory. This later merged with The Edwina Mountbatten Trust, and is now named The Edwina Mountbatten And Leonora Children’s Foundation.