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Princess Beatrice had to seek the emotional support of her friends after she was “traumatised” by an exposé on her mother Sarah, Duchess of York. Fergie faced public backlash after she was filmed offering to introduce a fake sheikh to Prince Andrew in exchange for a fee. Speaking to Channel 5’s documentary ‘Beatrice and Eugenie: Pampered Princesses?’, royal biographer Angela Levin said: “Beatrice admitted that she spent several days crying.
“And one of her friends went and stayed with her overnight for two days because she was so traumatised and so unhappy.”
Despite video footage of Sarah’s meeting with the pretend sheikh emerging, Princess Beatrice and younger sister Eugenie both stepped up in defence of their mother.
Royal commentator Katie Nicholl said: “She was caught on camera, essentially selling access to her husband to someone she believed was a sheikh but, in fact, was an undercover reporter for News of the World.
“They called themselves the tripod because that’s exactly what they were. They leaned on each other, they depended on one another. They were absolutely a unit and nothing was going to come between them.”
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Beatrice had proceeded to go “into hiding” immediately after receiving confirmation the report would be published, sparking major concerns about Fergie’s reputation.
Author Tom Quinn said: “Beatrice was at a party held by Naomi Campbell, the model.
“She just kept asking her mother, ‘how did this happen?’
“And they left the party immediately, went into hiding, knowing that, once again, her mother’s reputation was about to be completely thrashed.”
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Broadcaster Ayesha Hazarika added: “It was a nightmare for Sarah Ferguson, it was a nightmare for her children. It was sort of a nightmare for everyone.”
The Duchess of York had been very open in the past about her financial struggles since divorcing Prince Andrew in 1996.
The former royal went as far as suggesting she would have been “homeless” had her former husband not helped her, and she said she had been “devastated” about the embarrassment her indiscreet video had caused the Royal Family.
In a statement she released after the video was published, Fergie said: “I very deeply regret the situation and the embarrassment caused.
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“It is true that my financial situation is under stress, however, that is no excuse for a serious lapse in judgment and I am very sorry that this has happened.
“I can confirm that The Duke of York was not aware or involved in any of the discussions that occurred.”
The 2010 scandal is believed to have been at the root of Sarah’s exclusion from Prince William and Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding in 2011.
But her position within the Royal Family has slowly been re-established, being asked to attend her nephew Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle in 2018 and playing centre stage role at her daughter Eugenie’s wedding the same year.
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