Sarah Ferguson was absent at the service for the Queen’s lying-in-state today as her ex-husband Prince Andrew stands in the procession. The Duchess of York, who is also known as Fergie, was married to the Queen’s ‘favourite son’ Prince Andrew for a decade before they split in 1992 and divorced in 1996.
While she continues to live in the Royal Lodge in Windsor, she was not seen among members of the Royal Family at the service for the Queen today. Ms Ferguson has frequently spoken of her admiration for Her Majesty, her former mother-in-law.
She once described the Queen as her “greatest mentor”. The Telegraph reports that Ms Ferguson has been invited to the funeral.
However, she has not been spotted in public at all since the Queen’s death last Thursday, September 8. The last sighting of Fergie caught her glued to the screen of her phone at Venice airport on the day of the Queen’s passing – but she has yet to be seen since.
The mother-of-two also did not attend Prince Philip’s funeral or memorial service. She famously fell out with the Duke of Edinburgh after she was photographed having her toes sucked by her financial adviser in the south of France five months after splitting from Andrew.
Philip branded his son’s ex as “odd” and “pointless”. He even reportedly asked her to leave Balmoral when he arrived during holidays.
The Duke of Edinburgh, it has been claimed, would also prevent other members of the Royal Family from bailing her out during periods of financial difficulties. According to royal insider Gyles Brandreth, while the Queen might share a tea with Ms Ferguson on occasion after the split with her son, Philip had no such time for her.
They were seen together for the first time in years in 2018 for Princess Eugenie’s wedding – although the Duchess was said to be a “bundle of nerves” before having to stand next to Prince Philip for the event. She would later be absent from Prince Philip’s funeral during the Covid lockdown, and was not among the 1,500 who attended his memorial service a year later.
However, she was closer with the Queen. A royal insider suggested she was more recently being brought “back into the fold” owing to the Queen’s fondness for her, as well as the lack of Prince Philips’ presence.
READ MORE: Fergie’s toe-sucking scandal: The full story behind the photos [REVEAL]
Following news of the Queen’s death, Fergie wrote: “I am heartbroken by the passing of Her Majesty the Queen. She leaves behind an extraordinary legacy: the most fantastic example of duty and service and steadfastness, and a constant steadying presence as our head of state for more than 70 years.
“She has given her whole life selflessly to the people of the UK and the Commonwealth. To me, she was the most incredible mother-in-law and friend. I will always be grateful to her for the generosity she showed me in remaining close to me even after my divorce. I will miss her more than words can express.”
The Queen’s beloved corgis will also be going into the care of Prince Andrew and Ms Ferguson.