SARAH FERGUSON and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall have never appeared to share a bond, and the two royal women have been treated very differently by the Queen and the Royal Family.
Sarah Ferguson – affectionately known as Fergie – and Prince Andrew married in their spectacular royal wedding in 1986. Meanwhile, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, was finally able to tie the knot with Prince Charles in 2005. The two royal women, who have never appeared to be particularly close, have had strikingly different royal careers.
The Royal Family themselves have treated the Duchesses very differently and even made an allowance for the young Fergie that they denied Camilla.
Camilla first met the bachelor Prince of Wales in the early Seventies, and the two shared a brief romantic affair.
However, the young Camilla, who was around 25 at the time, was deemed unsuitable for the heir to the throne.
Royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams told Express.co.uk: “She mixed in a similar set to Charles and they were undoubtedly ideally suited.
The Duchess of Cornwall and the Duchess of York (Image: Getty)
Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall’s latest outing together in July (Image: Getty)
“However, she would not at that time have been thought suitable as a wife of the heir to the throne as she had had previous lovers.”
Although Charles and Camilla were finally able to marry in 2005, Camilla has faced harsh criticism from the British public and the Royal Family over the intervening years.
Camilla became engaged to Andrew Parker Bowles and, although her 1973 marriage “broke Charles’ heart”, the pair stayed in touch.
They resumed their affair during Camilla’s marriage, again breaking things off when Charles became engaged to Princess Diana.
However, they reignite their relationship after Charles’ marriage to the Princess of Wales had “irretrievably broken down” in 1986.
Even for some years after Princess Diana’s death in 1997, the Queen was not welcoming and “wanted Camilla gone”.
It comes in stark contrast to the Royal Family’s initial assessment of Fergie.
When she was courting Prince Andrew in 1985, the Royal Family did not seem to mind at all that she had had previous boyfriends.
Sarah Ferguson and Prince Andrew married in 1986 (Image: Getty)
Fergie and Andrew have gone to Royal Ascot together for the last 5 years (Image: Getty)
Ingrid Seward, in her 1991 biography “Sarah: HRH The Duchess of York”, writes: “The Queen Mother liked her at once.”
She declared: “She is so English.”
Ms Seward continues: “The Queen Mother went further and said that any girl of 26 would have had previous boyfriends; it was perfectly natural and she thought Sarah would be ideal for Andrew.”
The Queen also instantly warmed to the young Fergie, who had been mixing on the outer edges of royal circles all her life.
Camilla and Charles timeline (Image: DX)
Ms Seward writes: “The Queen liked Sarah. They got along well.
“Their mutual enjoyment of country pursuits, their love of dogs and horses, provided them with a common ground.”
Her Majesty is even said to still be a “huge fan” of the Duchess of York.
Speaking on Channel 5 documentary, “The Royal Family: Affairs and Infidelities”, royal author Anna Pasternak said: “I happen to know that the Queen is a huge fan of Sarah’s and has enormous affection for her.
Sarah Ferguson was married to Prince Andrew from 1986 until their divorce in 1996 (Image: Getty)
“I think we’ll see a lot more of Sarah within the inner sanctum of the Royal Family.”
Sarah Ferguson lost her HRH title upon her divorce from Prince Andrew in 1996.
She is now simply known as Sarah, Duchess of York and is no longer technically part of the Royal Family.
Camilla was first pictured with Prince Charles as his partner in 1999, well after Fergie’s departure.
This means that the two women have seldom if ever been pictured together, and the pair are not known to share a friendship.
Indeed Fergie was firm friends with Princess Diana during much of the Princess of Wales’ life, which may preclude a warm relationship with Camilla.
The Duchess of Cornwall was not present at Sarah’s daughter Princess Eugenie’s royal wedding last October, as she had a previous engagement at a school in Scotland.
Fergie said at the time: “I think it’s wonderful she kept to her engagement, especially as it was with children.
“She’s a wonderful lady.”
Andrew and Sarah timeline (Image: DX)
Added to this, Prince Charles is said to be “really riled” by the Duke and Duchess of York’s relationship.
Royal expert Katie Nicholl, speaking on 2017 Netflix documentary “The Royal House of Windsor”, said: “He [Andrew] has been a liability to the Royal Family.
“His relationship with his ex-wife [Sarah Ferguson] is one of the things, I’m told, that really riles Charles.
“It all contributes together into something that is just not very palatable.”
Princess Diana and Sarah Ferguson were friends from the start of Diana’s royal career (Image: Getty)
A source even reportedly told The Sun in April that the Prince of Wales ”can’t stand” the Duchess of York.
They said: “Charles is not OK with Fergie. He can’t stand her in reality.”
Andrew and Charles’ brother Prince Edward also has his own reservations about Fergie.
According to Ms Seward, in her 1995 book “Prince Edward”: “Prince Edward does not hold his sister-in-law the Duchess of York in high regard.
“Edward had once been close to the Duchess, but he had come to believe that she had made a fool of his brother (Andrew).”
Source: EXPRESS CO UK