FANS of The Crown are eagerly awaiting the show’s return.
Katherine Bowes-Lyon was the Queen’s cousinCredit: Collect
Who were Nerissa and Katherine Bowes-Lyon?
Nerissa was born in 1919 and younger sister Katherine in 1926, both daughters of minor aristocrat John Bowes-Lyon, the brother of Elizabeth, later the Queen Mum.
They were both born with servere learning disabilities.
It is believed the sisters’ symptoms were the result of a genetic condition not in the Bowes-Lyon’s bloodline, but that of his wife Fenella.
Katherine and Nerissa had three cousins with the same disabilities – they were Edonea, Rosemary and Etheldreda – the daughters of Fenella’s sister Harriet.
Nerissa Bowes-Lyon was Katherine’s sister and the Queen’s cousinCredit: Collect
What happened to Nerissa and Katherine Bowes-Lyon?
The Crown looks at how the two sisters were registered as DEAD and hidden from the world in the Royal Earlswood Institution for Mental Defectives – cruelly known as The National Asylum for Idiots – in Redhill, Surrey, after being born with learning disabilities.
There they stayed for most of their long lives until Nerissa’s death aged 66 in 1986.
Meanwhile, Katherine passed aged 87 in 2014, with her death going largely unnoticed.
It is believed she stayed in the institution until 1997, when it closed amid abuse claims, and then lived in another home in Surrey.
The two sisters were born with severe learning difficulties and were sent to The Royal Earlswood Institution for Mental Defectives Credit: Rex Features
Nerissa and Katherine were 15 and 22 when they were admitted to the institute.
Staff, patients and people within the local community were aware of their royal relatives.
Though the sisters wore the standard institution clothes, they were allowed to change into their own if they had visitors.
Their last known visitors were in the Sixties, when mum Fenella died.
Their father had passed away in 1930 of pneumonia, aged just 44.
A young Princesses Elizabeth (left) with sister Margaret and mum ElizabethCredit: Popperfoto – Getty
Who plays them in The Crown?
The new series of The Crown revisits the story of their tragic lives.
When he returns he tearfully tells her of the bedside trinkets they have featuring their royal cousins.
The fourth season is set in the Eighties and sees Princess Margaret, played by Helena Bonham Carter, fly into a rage when she discovers the sisters’ plight.
The Crown sees Princess Margaret, played by Helena Bonham Carter, fly into a rage when she discovers the sisters’ plightCredit: Netflix 2020, Inc
Yelling at the Queen Mother, she says: “Locked up and neglected. They’re your nieces — daughters of your favourite brother.
“It’s wicked and it’s cold-hearted and it’s cruel and it’s entirely in keeping with the ruthlessness which I myself have experienced in this family.
“If you’re not first in line, if you’re an individual character with individual needs or, God forbid, an irregular temperament . . . then you’ll be spat out, or you’ll be hidden away or worse: Declared dead.
“Darwin had nothing on you lot — shame on all of you.”
The Crown suggests the Queen believed the line that they were dead.
Netflix is yet to confirm with The Sun who plays the sisters in The Crown.
The Insidexpress is now on Telegram and Google News. Join us on Telegram and Google News, and stay updated.