Lady Gabriella Windsor’s husband Thomas Kingston died from ‘catastrophic’ head wound, inquest hears


Thomas Kingston, the husband of Lady Gabriella Windsor, was found dead at his parents’ home with a “catastrophic head injury” and a gun close to his body, a coroner has said.

Kingston, 45, died at the property in a Cotswold village on Sunday.

Katy Skerrett, the senior coroner for Gloucestershire, said the financier, who was the son-in-law of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent, had lunch with his parents before his body was found in an outbuilding.

She said a post-mortem had been undertaken and that a provisional cause of death had been given as a “traumatic wound to head”.

As she opened an inquest into Kingston’s death, Ms Skerrett said she had been given evidence of the brief circumstances surrounding “this tragic incident”.

She said: “Mr Kingston was visiting his parents home in the Cotswolds on 25 February. He ate lunch with his parents.

“His father went out to walk the dogs. On his return, Mr Kingston was not in the house. After approximately 30 minutes, his mother went to look for him.

“His father forced entry into an outbuilding when he couldn’t gain entry. Mr Kingston was found inside with a catastrophic head injury. A gun was present at the scene.

Emergency services were called. Police are satisfied the death is not suspicious.”

The hearing, at Gloucestershire Coroner’s Court, lasted less than minutes. Several journalists and a Buckingham Palace representative were present but no family members.

Thomas Kingston was a committed Christian who once worked as a hostage negotiator in Iraq

Thomas Kingston was a committed Christian who once worked as a hostage negotiator in Iraq – Mark Cuthbert/Getty Images Contributor

Kingston once worked as a hostage negotiator in Iraq. Known as Tom, he read economic history at the University of Bristol before joining the diplomatic missions unit at the Foreign Office.

He was seconded to Baghdad as project manager for the International Centre for Reconciliation, based at Coventry Cathedral, in 2003. The following year, he cheated death in a suicide bombing in the Iraqi capital that killed 22 people.

Rev Canon Andrew White, then the vicar of St George’s Church, the only Anglican church in Iraq, worked closely with him.

He described him as a fearless and very committed Christian, telling The Telegraph: “I loved him so much. The thing about Tom was he was never scared. Whatever I asked him to do, he would do it with a big smile on his face in the middle of a war zone.”

Kingston returned to the UK to work for Schroders, the global asset management firm, as an equity analyst before becoming the managing director of Voltan Capital Management and later a director of Devonport Capital, which provides short-term loans to businesses operating in the developing world.

His father was a hugely successful barrister, specialising in planning law. Also a devout Christian, he was elected to the General Synod in 2016.  His mother, Jill, is a trustee of a Christian healing centre and runs the Nadezhda Charitable Trust, which supports projects in Zimbabwe.

Kingston was introduced to his royal bride by mutual friends and proposed on the car-free Channel Island of Sark, where his parents have a holiday home.

Lady Gabriella’s father, Prince Michael, is Elizabeth II’s first cousin and a grandson of George V. The couple married at St George’s Chapel Windsor in May 2019, in a lavish ceremony attended by an array of senior royals including the late Queen and Prince Philip.

The couple were said to have been happily married to the end and were most recently pictured together, beaming for the camera, on Valentine’s Day.

Lady Gabriella Windsor paid tribute to Thomas Kingston, calling him 'an exceptional man who lit up the lives of all who knew him'

Lady Gabriella Windsor paid tribute to Thomas Kingston, calling him ‘an exceptional man who lit up the lives of all who knew him’ – Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

Buckingham Palace announced Kingston’s death on Tuesday evening. Lady Gabriella, paid tribute to her husband, describing him as “an exceptional man who lit up the lives of all who knew him.” She said his death had come as a “great shock to the whole family.”

Buckingham Palace said the King and Queen joined Prince and Princess Michael of Kent and all those who knew Kingston in grieving “a much-loved member of the family”.

A spokesman said: “In particular, Their Majesties send their most heartfelt thoughts and prayers to Gabriella and all the Kingston family.”

The brief hearing offered no clues to the reason behind Kingston’s death.

The news left friends and family stunned. Many have insisted that he and Lady Gabriella, who lived in London, were happily married and had no known financial difficulties.

Some have speculated that the traumas Kingston witnessed in Baghdad might have had long term effects but if so, they appear to have been hidden.

Canon White said this week of their time in Iraq: “We survived several suicide bomb attacks. We were regularly caught up in IED [improvised explosive device] attacks. Cars would blow up in front of us and we would just move on. We were always together and had 35 armed guards at all times.”

Both men are said to have been in Canon White’s Anglican church when it was targeted in a suicide-bomb attack. They entered the building just before the blast, which killed two of the congregation and 20 others.

The Kingston family is being supported by Buckingham Palace, which along with the police, has taken measures to protect their privacy for their own safety and security.

Prince and Princess Michael attended a memorial service on Tuesday for King Constantine of Greece at St George’s Chapel.

Lady Gabriella, known to friends as Ella, who was a goddaughter to the late King, stayed away as she was comforted by her family.

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