Queen Camilla abolished the historic title of ‘Lady in Waiting’ after her husband was proclaimed monarch, but Zara Tindall appears to be keen to keep it going.
King Charles’s niece turned up at Cheltenham Racecourse in Gloucestershire with her friend Dolly Maude wearing a badge carrying the words, ‘Lady in Waiting’.
The badge granted Maude, an NHS maternity nurse, entry to the highly restricted Royal Box.
A spokesman for Zara insists: ‘It was a joke. Zara doesn’t have any sort of Lady in Waiting.’
Queen Camilla abolished the historic title of ‘Lady in Waiting’ after her husband was proclaimed monarch, but Zara Tindall (pictured) appears to be keen to keep it going
King Charles’s niece turned up at Cheltenham Racecourse in Gloucestershire with her friend Dolly Maude wearing a badge carrying the words, ‘Lady in Waiting’
The badge granted Maude (left), an NHS maternity nurse, entry to the highly restricted Royal Box
Perhaps Maude feels she deserves the badge of honour after she helped deliver Zara’s third child, Lucas, on the bathroom floor, at the Tindalls’ home in Gatcombe Park in 2021?
Zara’s husband, former England rugby star Mike Tindall, would certainly agree. He once joked that Maude is ‘more important’ than him.
No place at Fay Weldon’s funeral for ‘coercive’ ex
Her extraordinary life and talents never failed to surprise or delight. Nor, I can disclose, did Fay Weldon’s funeral on Monday.
Retired parish priest — and former 1980s The Communards star — the Rev Richard Coles conducted the committal.
The setting — a Northamptonshire crematorium — might have dismayed many, but not Fay, I’m assured.
‘It was sandwiched between a solar-panel farm and a high-security prison,’ reflects one mourner. ‘She’d have loved it.’
Her extraordinary life and talents never failed to surprise or delight. Nor, I can disclose, did Fay Weldon’s funeral on Monday (pictured with Nick)
Another detail might have delighted Fay — author of classic feminist revenge novel The Life And Loves Of A She-Devil — even more.
That was the absence of her third husband, Nick Fox, from whom she dramatically announced her estrangement three years ago, aged 89, accusing him of ‘coercive control and financial mismanagement’.
He strongly denied this, calling the allegations ‘a calumny’.
Fox, 15 years Fay’s junior, tells me he hears ‘nothing’ from her family. ‘They have not told me about any funeral. They did not even bother to tell me when she died.’
Divorced from Weldon last summer, he adds that he learned of her death from a friend who considered it ‘unspeakable’ that he had been kept in ignorance.
The antipathy is, alas, fully reciprocated. ‘It’s just as well that he wasn’t there,’ explains one of the 150 or so of Fay’s family and friends who gathered at Nene Valley crematorium. ‘I think they would have lynched him.’
Instead, the service was as intense and moving as Fay would have wished it. ‘She was a committed Christian. Richard [Coles] gave her communion both at her son Nic’s house and in the nursing home where she died.’
It was at Nic’s house, too, that Fay’s inimitable life was celebrated afterwards — with abundant champagne.
Patsy rings the changes
When I disclosed last September that Patsy Kensit had got engaged, some refused to believe it.
After all, the actress had been married four times and had said that she couldn’t ‘be bothered’ with men.
But here’s some evidence to prove the doubters wrong.
When I disclosed last September that Patsy Kensit (left) had got engaged, some refused to believe it
Kensit (left), 54, is pictured in New Bond Street, Mayfair, with her fiance, property tycoon Patric Cassidy (right), 58, shopping for a sparkler
Kensit, 54, is pictured in New Bond Street, Mayfair, with her fiance, property tycoon Patric Cassidy, 58, shopping for a sparkler.
She divorced DJ Jeremy Healy, 61, in 2010, following a three-year marriage.
She was previously married to Oasis star Liam Gallagher, 50, with whom she has a son, Lennon.
She has another son, James, with her second husband, Simple Minds singer Jim Kerr, 63.
She had a fascinating life as the daughter of one of Britain’s most colourful billionaires, Sir James Goldsmith, before marrying cricket hero Imran Khan and moving to his native Pakistan.
Now, Jemima Goldsmith, 49, is considering following Prince Harry.
Asked if she would write a memoir, the TV producer says: ‘Let me come back to you after I have spoken to everyone in my life, as the people who’d be in it might be annoyed.
‘But watch this space.’
If only Harry had been so considerate . . .
Keanu and Guy out arm-in-arm
Forget Hollywood, the real film-star schmoozing goes on in Mayfair these days.
The latest pair seen plotting a new blockbuster are The Matrix star Keanu Reeves, left, and British director Guy Ritchie, who spent the evening at Oswald’s, Robin Birley’s fashionable private members’ club.
The latest pair seen plotting a new blockbuster are The Matrix star Keanu Reeves, left, and British director Guy Ritchie, right, who spent the evening at Oswald’s, Robin Birley’s fashionable private members’ club
So well did the night out go that Reeves, 58, linked arms with Ritchie, 54, when they saw a photographer.
Reeves recently finished filming John Wick: Chapter 4, while Ritchie’s thriller, The Covenant, is out in April.
University Challenge viewers complained about last week’s music round which found Queen’s Belfast students unable to identify the voice of Linda Perhacs, an obscure American singer.
Question-setter Lillian Crawford says gleefully: ‘Getting sadistic pleasure from the carnage my round on psychedelic folk caused.’
The good news for students is Ms Crawford has now left to join Counterpoint, Radio 4’s music quiz. I fear discord.
Fancy being a ‘student’ with Prince William and Kate Middleton?
A casting call for actors to work as extras on a shoot in St Andrews, where the couple met at university, has been made by the agency Extra People Ltd.
It says only that it’s ‘one of the world’s biggest TV shows’, but it’s thought to be The Crown. Successful applicants could earn £250 a day.