Sarah Ferguson looked forlorn as she was snapped leaving Royal Lodge in Windsor today after reportedly being snubbed ahead of King Charles’s Coronation. The Duchess of York, 63, was photographed next to her ex-husband Prince Andrew, who was behind the wheel of a Range Rover on Sunday (April 16).
It emerged this week that Fergie is not expected to attend the King’s Coronation on May 6 despite daughters Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie set to attend.
Royal commentator Tom Bower told MailOnline the Duchess excluded herself due to her previous conduct, adding her presence would “provoke critical comment which the King doesn’t need.”
Fergie spoke also spoke on Loose Women earlier this month, where she had detailed her plans for Coronation Day which consisted of watching the historic moment on TV.
Fellow royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams hailed the monarch’s “extremely wise” decision not to invite his ex-sister-in-law because she has been an “embarrassment to the Royal Family for many years”. Royal author Phil Dampier told The Sun: “She cannot expect to be at the top of the royal pecking order.”
The Duke and Duchess of York were married in 1986, but the husband and wife relationship ended in 1992. She was then distanced from the Royal Family after a series of scandals.
One of the Duchess’s most embarrassing moments was when photographs were published showing her having her toes sucked by her financial advisor John Bryan at her holiday villa in St Tropez.
They were also snapped kissing, embracing and frolicking in a pool. She was also forced to apologise in 2010 after she was secretly recorded offering to sell access to the Duke of York in exchange for £500,000.
The Duchess has since established herself as a successful author.
One of Fergie’s friends told the Independent: “She has been hugely supportive of Charles and Camilla and does not want this to become about her.
“The whole day is about the new King and the success of his reign, but she has always championed the Royal Family and the Queen undoubtedly would have wanted her to be there.”
Elizabeth II is understood to have been fond of Fergie, who along with Andrew adopted the late monarch’s corgis after her death in September last year.
The Duchess has also been one of the Royal Family’s biggest cheerleaders.
She told OK! magazine: “I have known both the King and the Queen Consort since I was a child.
“I think if you look at the King’s track record in areas like the environment, where he was decades ahead of his time, and the Prince’s Trust, it’s clear what an extraordinary man he is and how fortunate we are to have him on the throne.
“I also admire the way the Queen Consort has worked tirelessly in areas like literacy and domestic violence.”
Reports of the Duchess’s not being invited to the Coronation came in the same week Buckingham Palace announced Prince Harry will attend, but without his wife, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex.
The decision ended months of speculation over whether they would go to the event, which falls on the same date at the Sussexes’ son, Prince Archie Harrison.
More than 2,000 guests will assemble at Westminster Abbey for the country’s first Coronation in 70 years.
This includes heads of state from around the world as well as monarchs from across Europe and further afield.