Sarah Ferguson, the former wife of Prince Andrew who retains an exceptionally close relationship with her ex-husband, is reportedly mad as hell after she was snubbed by not being invited to the exclusive after-after-party for Prince Harry’s wedding.
Fergie, who was not invited at all to Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding, has been invited to the noon wedding ceremony in Windsor Castle, and to the afternoon reception in the Castle afterward.
In fact, Prince Harry’s press secretary explicitly said in a statement to the media Friday that everyone who was invited to the wedding would be invited to the reception.
However, it now appears that was only half the story.
For according to a report in the Daily Mail, the reality is that while all the 600 guests will indeed be going for an afternoon reception in St. George’s Hall in Windsor Castle, only a select group of 200 to 250 have been invited to the “inner sanctum” party at nearby Frogmore House, which is being paid for by Prince Charles.
And here’s where the plot thickens.
Prince Charles hates Fergie. He hates her almost, but not quite as much, as Prince Philip, who despite being somewhat inconvenienced by having recently had a hip operation, very much hopes to attend all elements of the wedding—and really loves a good party.
In a crowd of 600, it will be easy enough for Philip to avoid encountering or being forced to make eye contact with Fergie. In a crowd of 200, it would be almost impossible—and undoubtedly would ruin his evening.
And if Philip’s evening was ruined, other people’s evenings might well be ruined as well.
Fergie has reportedly not taken the news of her unwelcomeness well.
The Mail reports that the 58-year-old duchess “has been complaining about it to anyone who will listen.”
In truth, it would really have been extremely difficult for Harry to invite her to a more intimate family celebration—especially as Prince Charles is paying for it.
And hats off to Harry for not having ceded to pressure to copy the petty example of Prince William and Kate Middleton and exclude her from celebrations altogether.
Despite the fact that he faced grim opposition to his wishes from his father and grandfather, Harry stuck to his guns and said that Fergie would come to the ball.
Prince Philip has never been able to forgive Fergie for what he sees as shamelessly cashing in on her royal status to make money and for embarrassing the family on several occasions, most famously when she was photographed having her toes sucked by a Texan billionaire while still married to Andrew.
Her covertly recorded attempts to sell access to Prince Andrew while drunk to a News of the World reporter didn’t go down too well either.
But Harry knows what it is to be a royal black sheep. He has kept in touch with Sarah, and is good friends with her daughters, Eugenie and Beatrice.
He has been a frequent guest at Fergie and Andrew’s $15 million Swiss ski lodge and has made no bones about the fact that he definitely wanted her to be there... at least for half the celebrations, that is.