Royal Family Category
The Royal Family, the House of Windsor, in the news and on a horse
In “Bea’s night out”, the flame-haired princess arrives for a “royal birthday bash”. At 9pm, the Mail spots Beatrice arrive at Soho’s Cocoon eatery. It is the occasion of cousin Peter ‘Pete’ Phillips’ 30th birthday.
Here are the young royals eating at a table that can be hired by anyone. They then repair to club Volstead, a venue run by the same company that owns the restaurant. Perhaps the royals have done a TwoFor pub-club deal?
In this “exclusive members” club, the motto is “sobriety has its place”. And here are today’s royals. Here’s William turning to Prince Harry, and, as reported by the Sun, saying: “You’re now the official royal gooseberry.” An insider says the group “fell about laughing”, marvelling at Wills’ clever way with words, since we all know Harry as the royal strawberry.
But there are no shots of drinks and tales of drugs and excess. So Bea goes looking. It is 1pm and she is heading to Shoreditch in East London.
It is the occasion of one Davina Taylor’s party. Taylor is notably a friend to Kate Moss, and Sienna Miller, Jade Jagger and Kelly Osbourne. And Naomi Campbell. They are the nation’s celebrity establishment.
And Bea’s eyes grow wide. And wider yet. Does he hang out with this new establishment with their drugs, dances and debauchery? Or with the old Establishment, who are so anti-Establishment they eat in a restaurant and dance in public?
We have unearthed nine more:
1. Philip once brought out his own fragrance. “Gaff” came in a spear-shaped bottle. Other fragrances mooted were “Patience” by Prince Charles, “Green” by Prince Andrew, “Stable” by Princess Anne and “Knockout” by Prince Edward
2. HRH and Philip’s favourite song is They Can’t Take That Away From Me by Edmund Hockridge
3. The Queen’s favourite question is “What do you do”. This is followed by “And you are?”, “Pleased to meet you?”, “What exactly do you do?” and “Are you one of Eddie’s friends?”
4. Her Majesty’s favourite joke was when the Mirror’s journalist posed as a butler and she replaced her normal breakfast packet of salt ‘n’ vinegar Monster Munch with Tupperware boxes of cereals. Philip’s finds anything by Hale & Pace “funny ha-ha”
5. The Queen’s top five Corgis ever are: Pickles, Onion, Salt, Vinegar and Yorkie
6. Philip is £5 up in the bet to see how many Royal marriages he and Liz can out last
7. Of the 2,500 presents HRH and Phil received from well-wishers on the occasion of their marriage, just 24 are left, the rest passed on to visiting statesmen and Princess Michael of Kent
8. HRH is a frequent caller to Windsor Magic FM’s late night talk show That’s Windsor Magic
9. Liz and Philip plan to renew their vows and feature in a 24-page photo special in Hello! magazine, but only if David Beckham and Victoria are able to attend
“ANDREW in jet scare,” says the Mirror, ever watchful of the goings and goings again of Prince Andrew.
But the news is not so bad as it seems, and Andrew HAS managed to catch a jet to a private engagement in Edinburgh.
The Mirror mentions something about landing gear problems, but Andrew managed to get through…
LET’S have a heated debate!
And today’s subject, courtesy of the Daily McCann (formerly Daily Diana, formerly Daily Express) is… “ISN’T IT ABOUT TIME PRINCE HARRY STOPPED FEELING SORRY FOR HIMSELF?”
Yes, says Simon Edge. Harry is stupid, gullible and has a revolting circle of friends. “Those are not my words,” says Edge, “but those of Mark Boland, the royal PR advisor who massaged the public.”
Oh, sorry, there’s more…
“…massaged the public into acceptance of the Duchess of Cornwall.”
Anyway, Simon reckons Harry is a thoroughly bad egg, or “roistering yob” as he puts it.
Meanwhile Jenny Selway, in the pro-Harry corner, says much the same, making free use of phrases such as “obnoxious” and “Hooray Henry”.
But she thinks we should spare a thought for the misguided prince on the grounds that (a) he’s nice to kids in a caring charity work way, and (b) he is vulnerable and needs his mum.
According to Jenny, men in their late teens and early twenties “phone to ask the questions they’d feel too silly to ask anyone else, they phone to touch base, they phone to ask how to boil an egg. Who does Harry phone?”
Well, call us old-fashioned, but how many men over the age of ten phone their mothers for this kind of hand-holding?
As for the egg question, we suggest Harry phones his dad. Likely answer: “Ask the chap who squeezes your toothpaste onto the brush – he should be able to get cook to rustle you up an egg or two.”
“DIANA INQUEST: IT’S A FARCE,” says the Express on its front page. “The truth stays hidden as key French experts dodge giving evidence to coroner.”
(Today, the Express’ Princess Diana-ometer is smiling, but her eyes belie an inner upset. Her earrings are diamond and pearl. Her teeth are a brilliant and white. The weather will be cloudy with scattered showers.)
The Express says this latest injustice will “outrage those who believe the French authorities are sabotaging the £10million inquest”.
The very real danger is that the inquest will be inconclusive.
“Do you believe the Diana inquiry will be a whitewash?” asks the Express in its phone poll, words more loaded than Prince Philip’s pheasant gun. Yes? No?
Diana tilts her head to one side and smiles as best she is able…
Of course that was satire. When he marries, Prince Harry will take on the full weight of the occasion with a sartorial display of dark baseball cap, new sneakers and a T-shirt bearing the legend “FCUK Marriage”.
But such a time will have to wait as the Mail brings news that Harry and “miserable” Davy have split.
It is reported that Davy “needs space” to “carve out her own identity”.
A “friend close to Chelsy” tells The Mail on Sunday: “This is not an over-for-good situation. Chelsy and Harry both love each other very much.”
A senior Palace aide confirms: “The relationship is over. It has simply run its course. Harry will be carrying on his Army career and Chelsy will continue her studies.”
And while Chelsy whittles, we happen up the Mail’s second Prince Harry feature: “Send me to Afghanistan or I’ll quit Army.”
“Harry has said he is at rock bottom,” a close friend says. “He is upset, angry and frustrated and feels completely redundant. He is basically doing nothing…He has said he is a troop leader without a troop.”
Harry is not some inedible ornament with a passion for dressing up in military garb. Says the source: “The MoD are going to have to figure something out. If they don’t, Harry has said he will think about pursuing his charity work and go back to Africa. He is desperate to do something that will give him a sense of purpose.”
But Harry is not alone. He might not have Chelsy, but if wants a sounding post he could consult with other men of his family and consider golfing, talking to plants and finding a use for Prince Edward…
Less a farce than the very best investigative journalism, the paper tracking down French cameraman Romuald Rat to the TV station where he works. In France.
As the Express puts it: “A bid to force the paparazzi to give evidence…has been rebuffed by France.” It could “derail the hearing”.
Might the inquest into Diana’s death prove inconclusive? After so much conjecture, official reporting and made-for-TV filming will we never know why Diana died?
As the Mail announces: “Seatbelts ‘would have saved the lives of Diana and Dodi’.”
“Clunck-click-click-click-click-flash every trip” as the advert advises…
“DIANA she was betrayed by Burrell,” states the caption beneath today’s Diana-omter (outlook sunny with a slight tilt of the head).
Burrell, author of Burrell: Diana & Me; Diana: Me & Diana and Burrell: Burrell is, as reported, in Florida. He is staying at his “little palace in the sun”, a compact and bijou residence as befitting a former servant. The place features five bedrooms, “several bathrooms” and a “state-of-the-art kitchen”.
“Friends say he admits pinching himself when he wakes in his four-poster to make sure he’s not dreaming.” He then turns in his bed of princesses to face his wife, the lovely Maria, and realises that he isn’t.
But life is good. And Burrell’s fortune is not in Diana memorabilia, rather in “teapots, rugs and wines”. The collection is named Royal Butler Collection, or The Dregs as below staffers call it.
Says Burrell: “I have been very careful not to exploit of abuse my position.”
Read about that in Burrell: My Secrets, Burrell: A Sense Of Senselessness and Burrell: Collected Histories & Thimbles.
The mind whirls. Might it be that Prince Charles, a man who appears as frozen in time as this late wife Princess Diana, is embroiled in this unsavoury tale of sex, blackmail and royalty?
Is this Charles reliving his youth, taking a “bed bath” from one of the alleged blackmailers, Messers Ian Strachan and Sean McGuigan? And if so, who plays nanny?
Through knitted fingers we read: “Sean McGuigan received the cash from the Prince’s Trust to set up a carwash business.”
And: “He spent a £1,500 loan on buckets, sponges and cleaning fluid and a further £1,000 grant for other start-up costs for the firm Star Craft in Fulham, London.”
A spokesman for the charity says: “We can confirm Sean McGuigan received a loan and a grant from the Prince’s Trust in 1993.”
Prince Charles was unavailable for comment…
STOP PRESS: Reports the Times: “The aide at the centre of an alleged blackmail plot against a member of the royal family has claimed he also had a homosexual liaison with the royal’s father and a Tory MP.”
PRINCE Harry shoots to kill. This much is certain. And he can take a shot or several in the course of his duty, notably of sambuca, tequila and a yellowy-white substance known as The Socialite’s Chest.
And, as the Guardian’s front-page headline tells us: “Prince Harry quizzed by police about shooting of rare birds.” More shooting.
We journey to the royal family’s Sandringham estate. The prince is on manoeuvres with young Van Cutsem, of the Older Van Cutsems. Two hen harriers, protected birds, are in flight. And then – Bang! Bang – they are not.
The birds are protected by rule of law and anyone caught killing one faces a six-month prison sentence or satisfying a £5,000 fine.
Harry and Young Van Cutsem have been interviewed by police. A spokesperson for Clarence House informs us: “Unfortunately, they’ve no knowledge of the incident.”
And we, like you, are alarmed.
Can it be that on a royal estate there is an armed presence taking pot shots at birds and getting his eye in on who knows what else?
Can it be that person or persons unknown have bypassed the maximum security, the cauldron of minders and militia, the wire traps and the squadron of white Fiat Unos that protect the Windsors to take out two in-flight birds?
Can it be that Harry and Young Van Cutsem – said to be “the only people known to have been shooting on the estate” at the time – were in such obvious peril?
The matter must be investigated to the full. We demand an inquiry. We demand that Prince Harry Baseball cap and his consorts be protected…
“I live in a prison,” says Heather. Not really. Heather is guilty of nothing but love. But there has been a miscarriage of justice that keeps Heather locked behind gates at her mansion.
What is more, Heather is blonde. Like Kate McCann. Like Princess Diana. “It’s like what they are doing to the McCanns,” says Mills. “What are they doing persecuting that woman? Look what they did to Diana.”
Indeed. “The police have said I’ve had death threats from a certain underground group.” The Establishment? Earthworms Against Heather? Al Qaeda? “I live in fear for my life,” says Heather.
But she is prepared. “I have a box of evidence which is going to a certain person if something happens to me,” says Heather, who is not believed to be dating the son of an Egyptian corner shop owner.
As Paul Burrell checks his post, the rest of us wonder about the lot of a blonde in today’s Britain.
There is a media conspiracy against her kind. “What are we doing as a nation buying these newspapers?” she asks. “We need to force a change as a responsible nation.”
“They make up such lies. They’ve called me a whore, a golddigger, a fantasist, a liar, the most unbelievably hurtful things – and I’ve stayed quiet for my daughter…
“I’ve had worse press than a paedophile or a murderer, and I’ve done nothing but charity for 20 years.”
Indeed, what else but charity caused Heather to campaign against landmines, date and then marry the older Paul, with his bobbling head, and beseech him to give, give, give until it hurts..?
Pic: The Spine – “I’ve had worse press than a paedophile”
The royal is said to “vehemently deny” the claims. “Met sources say they are ‘totally satisfied’ the allegation made on tape is untrue,” notes the Sun.
So we’ll have no more said about the matter. Unless you read the Mail and learn of the Italian newspaper that has published a picture of the royal (clothed and decent, we are all but certain) and the legend: “Sex and coke at Buckingham Palace.”
The Italians should know that Buckingham Palace is but the Queen’s main London residence and if a royal were to engage in acts of gay sex and drug taking – which they do not – the words could just as easily read “Sex and coke at Clarence House”, “Sex and coke at St James’s Palace”, or “Sex and coke in darkened corner in the Royal Mews, ask for ‘Hugo’”.
“This is typical of the Italian media and serves not purpose,” says Giovanni Di Stefano, the lawyer acting on behalf of alleged blackmailer Ian Strachan.
Di Stefano says she has received numerous calls asking about the name of the alleged miscreant. Says he: “I asked them not to speculate as justice has to be done.”
And to search the internet like everyone else…
The Express’s Diana masthead, that barometer of Diana’s mood, bodes unwell for news within.
And, indeed, inside readers learn that paparazzo Romuald Rat is said to have telephoned the Sun newspaper from within the Alma Tunnel and with Diana stricken and dying requested a £300,000 deal for pictures of the scene.
A Stephen Darmon, the snapper’s associate, says Rat was trying to stop the paparazzi reaching the car. He was helping Diana.
Indeed, it may have been that Rat hoped his pictures of a bloodied and prone Diana would be useful in assessing her condition and so getting her the right kind of medical treatment.
The gamble that the Sun’s picture editor, Ken Lennox, was also a trained medic was a long shot, but had it worked who knows what plaudits Rat would have attracted.
FUN FACT: According to his company website, “LINLEY has become known for its imaginative use of wood…”
If only a copy of this video being given away with every paper. Instead, Mirror readers have to make do with a “FREE ladybird book” of Rapunzel, the Princess who lets down only her hair.
But what of the sex video? The alleged blackmailer is one Ian Strachan. He is accused of trying to extort £50,000 from a “minor royal”. He has been arrested with one Sean McGuigan. They will be tried at the Old Bailey.
All to the good. Justice will be seen to be done. Or not – blackmailing victims are often afforded anonymity and the media gagged.
But what of this video? It allegedly shows the royal’s aide chopping up cocaine with the assistance of a Harrods gold card.
The Mail has more front page “SECRETS OF THE ROYAL ‘BLACKMAIL’ TAPE”.
There are “LURID DETIALS”. There is “sex and drugs”. The aide is boasting of a “gay sex act” with the unnamed royal. The aide is allegedly seen removing cocaine from an envelope bearing the royal’s name
The Mail says there are “fears” the royal’s name may emerge abroad.
But Strachan’s lawyer, Giovanni di Stefano, who has represented Saddam Hussein and Ronnie Biggs, says “there is no tape of a sex act in existence”.
There is only a tape of an assistant to a member of the Royal Family taking cocaine and saying how they received a sex act from a royal. That is all. Di Stefano’s client denies blackmail.
Strachan, a “wealthy London clubber” (Sun), tells his brief that he has met Princes William and Harry. He has also met Lord Frederick Windsor.
So no tape. No blackmail. And even if there were a tape, it may not be up to much. As the Times notes: “The Queen once said it was hard for young royals to live up to her standards.”
Whatever can she have meant…?
Picture: The Spine
Another day and another chance for the Royal Family to show that beneath the taffeta and the lace, under the bridge work and ten paces to the left of the special constable they are but a blood transfusion away from being just plain rich.
As the Sunday Mirror reports, Beatrice has struck up an “unlikely friendship with pop princess Lily Allen”.
Readers learn that Beatrice Windsor has found cause to visits Allen’s East London home. She has drunk shots and danced around Lily’s living room.
A party-goer says: “Bea was great fun. Her and Lily were controlling the stereo and putting on the tunes – and leading the dancing. Bea was loving being in with the music crowd.”
And her she is giving full throat to the line: “I’m not so royal now, am I.” indeed, not, she has achieved the improbable and become still more royal. Beatrice Windsor is the length of a Nazi uniform away from being as royal as they come…
Can it be that the campaign to make the Royal Family seem normal involves one of their number blackmailing a person or persons in order to gain sex and drugs?
They sit at the football; they embrace celebrity; they might be sent to the front line. The royals insist they move with the times. They are just like the rest of us. They make home movies. They turn to crime.
But our fears are ungrounded. It is the royal who is the alleged victim. It is they who called in police after allegedly being approached by two men back in August. The alleged felons demanded £50,000 not to publicise a video which they claimed showed the Royal engaged in a sex act.
The Mail informs us: “It is alleged he then said that he had a videotape showing an aide giving someone – who he suggested was the Royal – oral sex.”
Indeed, dear reader. Might it be that this sex tape is not such bad news; it enables the royals to move a step closer to solving the paradox – they rule by divine right but are just like the rest of us.
Broadcast and be damned. And if it is shaped like a unicorn, so much the better…
Inside and it’s the: “Riddle of the tall and elegant man.”
Jacques Morel is addressing the inquest. Yesterday we learnt that Morel had once seen a moustachioed, burly man wearing cowboy boots. Today Morel sees a “tall, elegant man”.
Morel sees more men than Princess Diana ever did.
“The people have to know the truth,” says Morel. “The real truth. People have the right to know and the children of Princess Diana have the right to know.” All five of them. (Read about that in my new book Diana On Althorp Island.)
Morel speaks, and makes ready to write his book. And the Mail sees a Damien Dalby take the stand. He says Diana was trying to speak. “Why didn’t they ask Evans,” she mumbles.”
No, not really. Or maybe… For now, we hear that as Diana lay broken in the car she uttered: “Oh my God, oh my God.”
These are Diana’s “last words as she lay dying in wreckage of her car”.
Sober. But can it be? And will it be allowed to be? What of a better last line, such as “Am I dying or is this my birthday?”, “I am ready to die for my Lord, that in my blood the Church may obtain liberty and peace”, and “Don’t let poor Nelly starve”?
If there is to be an official last utterance, make it a memorable one, something proud and more poignant than the noise made by Rachel from Friends gasping at a stain on her pencil skirt.
Suggestions for fitting last lines, if you please…
“DI COWBOY PLOT,” says the Sun’s headline.
Jacques Morel is addressing the High Court. (Wait your turn; they’ll get to you.)
Morel is a music writer. He has yet to pen a tune about Diana, but let us not rule it out. For now he plans only a book. The Princess inspires each of us in different ways, some write books, some write police reports, some write Daily Express headlines.
For an idea what shape the libretto ‘One Saint In Three Acts’ may take, Mr Morel describes seeing a man stood some place unspecified wearing cowboy boots. On his feet. The man is “about 30, solid build, with a moustache… a bit like a beer drinker in Ireland.”
Mr Morel distinctly recalls this man because he stood on his boots. We have not visited many Irish clubs and pubs and cannot say for certain if the foot stand is an approved move, a summons to gentlemanly action in the conveniences. Mr Morel’s view of the typical Irishman has perhaps been shaped news of Dublin’s Rainbow Café Lounge, Pogue Mahone Saunal” and the Up For The Craic cabaret show.
Mr Morel is French…
No rush, you might suppose. We’ve had ten years to catch up with events on that fate-filled night in Paris. Another decade won’t matter. We need to gather all the evidence. Hear all views. We need to be certain.
And on the Express: “Diana inquest hears sensational evidence.” Diana is not smiling today. Her teeth are bared and she wears generous pearl earrings with matching choker. As Anorak readers know, Diana’s expression is changeable, a barometer that reflects the Express’s news within.
Inside, Diana is smiling once more. Says the paper: “Photographer at Diana crash yelled to partner ‘She’s dead, hurry up’.”
Yannick Chenna is a motorist at the scene. He sees he saw photographer Romauld Rat get off a mortobike and open the car door. Rat runs to his partner and offers the command “She’s is dead, hurry up.
American tourist Brian Anderson is now talking. He sees a “significant flash of light”.
But it fades too quickly. And we continue to look for the truth…
Pic: The Spine – Click the picture for the full, er, picture
“WE have had this so many times before,” says Richard Westwood-Brookes, the auctioneer. “Unfortunately we seem to be in a culture these days when somebody somewhere has always got to find whatever you do as offensive or bad timing.”
It is Day 13 of the Princess Diana Inquest and news is that a Spitting Image puppet of Diana Of The Immaculate Appearance is to go under the hammer.
The Times has resisted all urges to place the puppet at the scene of the fatal crash, although it does, as ever, show the mangled remains of Diana’s car.
In London, a new witness is taking the stand. He is Grigori Rassinier, a French motorist who had been travelling the other way when Diana’s car crashed.
More testimony from Sarah Culpepper, a holidaying Briton, and from Amel Samel, a motorist. There is smoke. A bang. Death. The truth seems all too clear.
And then in the Express, there is a “Mystery man spotted in death tunnel”. Front-page news. It is the “Riddle of motorbike that dodged Diana’s crash in tunnel”.
Rassinier sees this bike swerve to avoid the crash. The driver was, her thinks, dressed in beige. Yes, beige. In Paris. Sensation.
Rassinier does not stop his car. Ms Samel does not stop. A Mrs Joanna Da Costa, an American tourist, does not enter the tunnel. She “fled terrified from the scene”.
When the celebrity princess was in need, the paparazzi and not the people went in.
You protect your own…
The Telegraph looks on as the England team up their game and the team’s Matt Stevens has his shorts pulled down.
“Wear jogging bottoms and T-shirts, the players looked cheerful and relaxed after touching down,” says the paper. Heathrow Airport staff on duty at the time cheer. The duty cameraman takes a picture.
But will it be enough? Will we all be doing “The Matt”? Will the lads secure contracts to appear in TV adverts, laughing loud as Matt loses his shorts in a pizza chain; Matt drops his shorts in Curry’s; Matt drops Anorak’s new range of Comfi Shortz to his knees in the offices of a debt consolidation company’s call centre?
And where does Prince Harry, that Jonny Wilkinson among men, figure in rugby’s marketing drive? There’s Harry Baseball Cap leaving the England plane, his eponymous hat pulled down over his patriotic hair and skin tones.
Did he pull down Matt’s shorts? And will we in pubs and clubs be doing “The Harry?”
“SWIG LOW,” says the Mirror’s front-page headline. “EXCLUSIVE: Wills and Harry on bender with England rugby heroes.”
There are Wills and Harry on the Mail’s cover, where things are still more exclusive with Wills pouring champagne into a tulip glass.
“Plastered in Paris with Wills & Harry,” says the Mail. Harry hugs Laurence Dallaglio. Wills commiserates with Mike Catt. “Very bad luck,” says Wills. “You played extremely well and showed tremendous spirit.”
And the party moves on from the team’s hotel to L’Etoile – “France’s answer to Boujis”.
The Express has more pictures, less exclusive than any of those shown in the Mail or Mirror, with Matthew Tait allowed to remove his shirt and Jonny Wilkinson planting a kiss on his blonde lover’s cheek.
“Let your heir down lads,” says the Sun. And the Telegraph looks back at the game’s key moments, seeing Wills preparing to drop kick a water bottle on the Paris turf.
But there is no time to look back. Onwards! Wills and Harry are needed. The Brazilian Grand Prix is on.
Come on, Harry! Come on, Wills. Tally ho! Your country needs you…
And the Sunday Times leads with “Brave England battle to battling Boks”. And courageous Wales.
There on the cover page of that paper is the picture that tells the story. They went. They gave it their all. But Princes Harry and Prince William could not make it through. Sure, they put in the hard yards, made sacrifices – getting to Paris would mean forgoing a soiree at Boujis. But it was for nought.
Reactions to defeat:
“They did fantastically well getting into the final – but in days to come, they’ll reflect on what they’ve done and be really proud of themselves” – England coach and royalist Brian Ashton
“You can’t fault the effort, can’t fault the heart. Such a shame when all the heart and spirit counts for nothing…Immensely disappointing” – England flanker and Mahiki Club guest pass holder Martin Corry
“So proud of all the guys who have supported us” – Jonny Wilkinson speaks on behalf of the Princes
“It’s a fuc*in’ conspiracy ” – Mohamed al Fayed on that disallowed try
More to follow…
THE Daily Mail is at the Fashion Rocks do; or at least sat outside in a bottle green Rover 75 clacking its marmalade coated tongue and taking pictures of the young and the tarty for illustrative purposes.
While the prints are being processed in its home dark room under the stair, the paper cocks an ear toward Princess Beatrice and hears her say: “I love it but I keep on having to lift it off the floor and pull the bodice up.”
The Mail stares. The pictures are ready. And readers get to see Princess Beatrice “revealing rather more décolletage than royal protocol might allow”.
Keen-eyed readers who can stand to look may wonder if this is Princess Beatrice or her mother, Sarah Ferguson, whose wont it is to hang out with her best friend/daughter while dressed in similar if not altogether complementary fashions.
To confess, we cannot be sure. The more we look the less we know. Is it Beatrice? Or is it Sarah? Your votes on the matter, if you please…