PRINCESS ANNE, who turns 69 today, is famous for her withering frostiness – and former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s wife Cherie felt the full force of the Princess Royal’s disapproval, according to biographers.
Princess Anne celebrates her 69th birthday today. The Princess Royal has hit headlines recently with her eco-friendly fashion recycling, still looking chic in outfits she has owned since the Eighties. Anne has won many fans over the years for the combination of her hardworking royal ethic and her straight-talking bluntness.
However, her trademark iciness did not make an ally of Cherie Blair, who had several frosty encounters with the Queen’s only daughter.
Speaking in 2019 Channel 5 documentary “Paxman on the Queen’s Children”, royal biographer Gyles Brandreth said: “When Cherie Blair first met her and said, you know, ‘Call me Cherie’, she [Princess Anne] said ‘No, I think it would be better if I called you Mrs Blair’.”
Biographer Peter Scott in his 2006 book “Tony and Cherie”, adds to the scene: “With that the princess turned on her heels and marched off to talk to someone else.”
According to Mr Scott, Cherie’s relationship with Princess Anne “went rapidly downhill and never really recovered” after that first 1997 meeting.
Princess Anne and Cherie Blair (Image Getty)
Tony and Cherie Blair pictured at 10 Downing Street in 1997 (Image Getty)
However, another ”major royal snub” from the princess happened a few years laters.
At the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebrations in 2002, Mrs Blair had another “unhappy meeting” with Anne.
Mr Scott writes: “There was ill-disguised contempt from some royals who believed the Blairs had muscled in on the event by going on an impromptu walkabout among the crowds in the Palace grounds.
“The Queen had introduced Cherie to her daughter Princess Anne.
The Blairs with the Queen and Prince Philip fo rthe 2002 Jubilee celebrations (Image Getty)
“The Princess Royal, who is known for her occasional bouts of imperious and short-tempered behaviour, was not in the mood to indulge in chit-chat with the wife of a prime minister.
“Seeing the princess, Mrs Blair said hello.”
Mr Scott writes how Anne: “Simply and silently turned her back on her.”
The author also claims that an “incredulous” Mrs Blair responded to the gesture by saying: “That b**** completely blanked me.”
Princess Anne at Royal Ascot this year (Image Getty)
The Princess Royal on a royal visit to Redcar recently (Image Getty)
Mrs Blair’s run-ins with the Royal Family did not end there, as she reportedly “annoyed” the Queen and “mortified” the Queen Mother when she and Tony went on the customary Prime Minister’s trip to Balmoral.
However, Princess Anne has also shown a more fiery side to her temper.
2002 Channel 4 documentary “The Real Princess Anne” heard from former royal press secretary Robin Ludlow, who described how the princess was approached by reporters as she was about to compete in the equestrian arena.
Mr Ludlow said: “And this of course made her very cross, because she wasn’t there to talk about her private life and that’s when she started telling everybody to naff off.”
Princess Anne timeline (Image DX)
Daily Express royal reporter Ashley Walton and Daily Express royal photographer Steve Wood reflected on the iconic picture they took of the princess when she told them to “naff off”.
Mr Wood said: “It’s the ‘naff off’ picture, when she lost it and told me to ‘naff off’ and that created a storm.”
Mr Walton added: “The truth is, we made up the ‘naff’ word to cover up another word.”
The Princess Royal’s bad language does not seem to be reserved for royal correspondents, either.
The princess with her granddaughters pictured earlier this month (Image Getty)
In 2003, journalist Ryan Parry gained access to Buckingham Palace as a “fake footman”, and reported back on the Royal Family’s habits behind closed doors.
Speaking in 2015 documentary “Serving the Royals: Inside the Firm”, Mr Parry recalled how he was once told off for breaking china.
However, he claimed to have never got a dressing down like a fellow footman who fumbled a task he was assigned by Princess Anne.
Mr Parry said: “She looked at him and said: ‘you incompetent t***!’”
Source: EXPRESS CO UK