Britain's Princess Eugenie gets engaged

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Britain's Princess Eugenie of York with her fiance Jack Brooksbank at Buckingham Palace after the announcement of their engagement

Britain's Princess Eugenie of York has got engaged, Buckingham Palace announced Monday, lining up a second royal wedding this year at the church where Prince Harry will tie the knot.

Eugenie, who is eighth in line to the throne, will marry her boyfriend Jack Brooksbank in late 2018, the palace said.

Eugenie, 27, is the younger daughter of Queen Elizabeth II's second son Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, and his ex-wife Sarah.

"The Duke and Duchess of York are delighted to announce the engagement of Princess Eugenie to Mr Jack Brooksbank," Buckingham Palace said.

"Her Royal Highness and Mr Brooksbank became engaged in Nicaragua earlier this month.

"The wedding will take place in the autumn of 2018 at St George's Chapel in Windsor, with further details to be announced in due course."

The church in the grounds of Windsor Castle, west of London, is where Eugenie's first cousin Harry is set to marry US actress Meghan Markle on May 19.

Eugenie showed off her engagement ring, an oval padparadscha sapphire surrounded by diamonds, in pictures released by Buckingham Palace.

Eugenie and her fiance began dating around seven years ago after they met while skiing in the Swiss resort of Verbier.

Socialite Brooksbank is the UK brand ambassador of Casamigos tequila, which was co-founded by US actor George Clooney. Brooksbank used to be the manager of posh central London nightspot Mahiki.

Andrew and Sarah married in 1986. They divorced 10 years later but remain close. Their daughters are Princesses Beatrice, 29, and Eugenie.

- 'Solid rock' -

Andrew said he was "really thrilled" at the news.

"Jack is an absolutely outstanding young man and Eugenie and he have got to know each other over a number of years," he said.

The duke said attention would turn to wedding planning and "getting it all organised" but "we can't fix a date yet, we've got to look at everyone's diaries".

Voicing her "total joy", Sarah said on Twitter: "The river flows well to its destiny because of the guidance of a solid rock."

Queen Elizabeth and her husband Prince Philip "are very pleased and wish the couple all the best," a Buckingham Palace spokesman said.

Prime Minister Theresa May also sent her "very best wishes", saying: "congratulations to the happy couple".

Aged 12, Eugenie had back surgery to correct scoliosis and has two titanium rods in her back. She is now patron of the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital, which carried out the operation.

She went to Newcastle University and graduated with a degree in English literature, art history and politics.

Eugenie rarely carries out public duties on behalf of Queen Elizabeth and works for the Hauser and Wirth art gallery in London as an associate director. She is also the patron of several charities.