Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex’s plane in emergency landing after ‘technical issues’

The Queen’s youngest son, Prince Edward, and his wife Sophie, Countess of Wessex have been forced to turn back to London and make an emergency landing, after a flight that they were on experienced a “technical issue”.

The Earl and Countess of Wessex were on their way to Gibraltar on a British Airways flight to undertake official royal business in the territory, however, they will now be delayed in arriving to the destination.

The information was confirmed by Gibraltar’s government, who said that the plane had been “safely diverted”.

A spokesperson for the government said: “The Earl and Countess of Wessex’s arrival in Gibraltar has been delayed slightly, after their flight was diverted safely back to the UK due to a technical issue."

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They continued: “Alternative arrangement are being made for Their Royal Highnesses’ arrival in Gibraltar later today and the programme will be adjusted accordingly.”

GBC News, Gibraltar's main broadcaster tweeted: “BA Press Office tells GBC pilots on flight 490 decided to return to Heathrow as a precaution due to a minor technical issue, and the aircraft landed normally.

“It's arranging for a replacement aircraft to operate the flight and thanks customers for their patience.”

A BA spokesman said: “Our pilots decided to return to Heathrow as a precaution due to a minor technical issue, and the aircraft landed normally.

"The issue has now been fixed and the aircraft is due to depart again shortly.

“We'd like to thank customers for their patience and understanding.”

A flight radar tracker showed that the flight reached northern France before circling back to Britain.

Prince Edward and Sophie’s visit to Gibraltar is somewhat controversial.

It’s found on the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula next to Spain, and whilst it is technically a British Overseas Territory, the Spanish Government has protested against the UK royals’ trip.

The Spanish Government claims that the territory is part of Spain.

Its future border arrangements are currently the subject of talks between the UK and European Union, and for this reason, the Spanish Government is reported to believe that their visit is “not appropriate”.

The Wessex’s latest royal engagement comes after they represented the Queen, alongside other members of the royal family, during the four days of patriotic celebrations to mark the monarch’s Platinum Jubilee, and her 70 years on the British throne.

They were seen with their children Lady Louise, 18, and James, Viscount Severn, attending the Queen’s Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral, amongst other events over the weekend.

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