King Charles' Cousin Lord Ivar Mountbatten Joins “The Traitors”: Meet the Gay Royal Family Member Turned Reality Star

Lord Ivar Mountbatten previously made headlines when he became the first extended member of the royal family to have a same-sex wedding

<p>ITV/Shutterstock; Samir Hussein/WireImage</p> Lord Ivar Mountbatten and King Charles

ITV/Shutterstock; Samir Hussein/WireImage

Lord Ivar Mountbatten and King Charles

Lord Ivar Mountbatten is going from an extended member of the royal family to a reality star as he joins The Traitors season 3 cast.

On Wednesday, June 5, Peacock's Emmy-nominated series announced its star-studded lineup, which includes Lord Ivar plus 20 others including The Bachelorette star Wells Adams, Zac Efron’s little brother Dylan Efron and Selling Sunset’s Chrishell Stause.

The series, led by host Alan Cumming, follows a group of contestants participating in a game similar to Mafia as they work together to eliminate other contestants in hopes of winning the grand prize.

Though Ivar isn't as public-facing as his relative King Charles, he did previously make headlines when he became the first extended member of the royal family to have a same-sex wedding in 2018.

From how he’s related to King Charles to which royal he’s the godfather of, here’s everything to know about Ivar’s royal family connections.

He’s the second cousin of King Charles

Born on March 1963, Ivar is the son of David Mountbatten, 3rd Marquess of Milford Haven, and Janet Mercedes Bryce. Through his father’s side, Queen Victoria was his great-great-great-grandmother.

Also through his father, he is the second cousin of King Charles and the first cousin once removed of the monarch's late father, Prince Philip.

He attended the same school as Prince Philip and King Charles

Ivar attended Gordonstoun School in Scotland before he graduated from Middlebury College in Vermont with a BA degree. Prince Philip and King Charles both attended Gordonstoun during their youth.

Prince Philip was a father figure for him

Following the death of his father in April 1970, Lord Ivar told The Telegraph that Prince Philip acted as a father figure for him and his brother George Mountbatten, 4th Marquess of Milford Haven.

“Prince Philip, then 49, and Uncle Dickie stepped up and supported my mother, who’d been left a widow aged just 31,” he said in an excerpt for the publication. “She was hugely grateful to the Duke for keeping an eye on her and for being a sort of father figure to us, her two boys.”

He added that Prince Philip was a great listener and would often tell him stories about his father. “In later years, I would sit with him and ask endless questions about my father. It was wonderful to have someone who could tell me everything about him,” he explained. “Prince Philip was a wonderful listener; you could tell him anything as long as you were being honest and forthright. He was happy to listen to your thoughts. But if he had some advice he thought you ought to hear, he’d give it to you.”

His great-uncle was Earl Mountbatten of Burma, Prince Philip's uncle assassinated by the IRA

Lord Ivar’s great-uncle was the Earl Mountbatten of Burma (born Prince Louis of Battenberg), who had a close relationship with his nephew, Prince Philip. When Philip's mother, Prince Alice of Battenberg, was diagnosed with schizophrenia and his father, Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark, ditched his family to live in Monte Carlo after being exiled from Greece, the future husband of Queen Elizabeth went to live with the Mountbattens, with his uncle acting as a father figure.

Mountbatten was close to Elizabeth's dad, King George VI, and engineered the first meeting between then-princess and Philip when the British royal family toured the Royal Naval College in 1939. Mountbatten continued to remain close to Philip and the royal family, particularly Charles, up until his tragic death in 1979 at the hands of IRA terrorists.

The Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh are godparents to his daughters

<p>Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty</p> Lord Ivar Mountbatten with the royal family in Scotland

Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty

Lord Ivar Mountbatten with the royal family in Scotland

Lord Ivar appears to have a close relationship with Prince Edward and Sophie, the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh. In fact, the royal couple are godparents to two of his children.

Through his first marriage to Penelope Anne Vere Thompson, Ivar welcomed three children, daughters Ella Louise Georgina Mountbatten and Alexandra "Alix" Nada Victoria Mountbatten and Louise "Luli" Xenia Rose Mountbatten. Prince Edward is a godfather of Ella while Sophie is a godmother of Alexandra.

He’s a godfather of Lady Louise Windsor

In addition to having Prince Edward and Sophie as godparents to his children, Ivar is also a godparent to one of theirs. He is one of the godfathers of their daughter, Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor, along with Lady Sarah Chatto, Lady Alexandra Etherington, Francesca Schwarzenbach and Rupert Elliott.

Ivar was even in attendance at Lady Louise’s christening at Windsor Castle in April 2004, where he posed alongside the newborn along with her parents and other godparents.

He was the first member of the royal family to have a same-sex wedding

After 17 years of marriage, Lord Ivar amicably divorced wife Penelope Anne Vere Thompson in November 2011. In 2016, he came out as gay, revealing his relationship with James Coyle. Two years later, the couple tied the knot in September 2018, with Ivar's former wife walking him down the aisle.

The wedding was a historic moment as it marked the royal family’s first same-sex marriage. In an essay for The Independent published in 2023, Lord Ivar reflected on the milestone as well as the media attention that followed his coming out.

He noted that "having the world's press shine a huge spotlight” on him “overnight, proclaiming [him] 'The First Gay Royal' " was “pretty alarming.”

"The reaction of my friends and family concerned me a lot, and I wondered if my world would suddenly collapse around me," he continued.

However, he noted that his family’s reaction “was incredibly supportive, and it soon became clear that in the scheme of things, your sexuality is of no significance to others.”

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He’s not as involved with the royal family anymore

Though Ivar grew up close with various royal family members, he told Tatler that he’s not as actively involved with the family nowadays. “The family has got very large,” he explained. “When we were younger, we went to royal events all the time. But now that everyone has had children, quite rightly everything has slimmed down.”

That being said, he noted that he will occasionally accompany members of the royal family overseas on business trips and maintains a close relationship with Prince Edward. “They're very support­ive and think James is brilliant," he said.

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