Attending her daughter Princess Eugenie's wedding in October, it was as if Sarah Ferguson's decades of scandal had been forgotten by the royal family.

The proud mother beamed from ear to ear as she sat in prime place to watch her Eugenie wed Jack Brooksbank at St George's Chapel, Windsor.

Later, Sarah even stood next to her former father-in-law Prince Philip in the couple's official wedding portrait, possibly signalling the end of their long-running feud.

But barely a week later, Fergie found herself mired in controversy again, this time because of a flurry of tweets with some very curious timing.


"So proud of Eugenie and Jack," read one tweet from Fergie written less than an hour after Meghan Markle and Prince Harry announced they were expecting a baby.

But she didn't stop there, also firing off a thank you to her dress designer and tweeting another photo of Eugenie at her wedding.

Soon unflattering headlines claimed Fergie was annoyed at the Duke and Duchess of Sussex for stealing Eugenie's thunder, with The Sun reporting that Meghan and Harry had committed a major faux pas by announcing their baby news to the family at the wedding.

While a public Twitter beef may seem wild when it comes to the royal family, it pales in comparison to the scrapes Fergie has found herself in over the years.


When Sarah Ferguson married Prince Andrew in 1986 she was instantly popular with both the public and the royal family — or so it seemed to the outside world.

But Fergie told Harper's Bazaar in 2011 she was only able to see Andrew for "40 days a year for the first five years of our marriage".

"Actually, one of the people (at Buckingham Palace), who shall remain nameless, said, 'Oh, for heaven's sake, you're just a naval wife. Put up with it. Everyone else has to.' I would say, 'No, I'm going to be with him,"' Fergie said.


"Two weeks after the wedding, the royal courtiers told Andrew, who thought he'd be stationed in London, 'You have to go to sea.'"

"I spent my entire first pregnancy alone.

"When Beatrice was born, Andrew got 10 days of shore leave and when he left and I cried, they all said: 'Grow up and get a grip.'"

The long-distance nature of their marriage took its toll on the couple, with Buckingham Palace announcing their separation in early 1992.

Just months after their split was announced, photos emerged in British tabloid of Fergie holidaying in St Tropez with new lover, financier John Bryan.

Shots showing Bryan sucking on the Duchess of York's toes made headlines around the world and saw Fergie well and truly ousted from the royal family for the rest of the 1990s.

Despite divorcing in 1996, the couple have continued to act more like a married couple. In 2008 Fergie moved in with Andrew and their daughters at the Royal Lodge in Windsor and this November the pair refused to rule out that they would one day remarry.

"So many people have asked me that, but we're so happy with the way we are right now," she told the Daily Mail in November.

The Duke and Duchess on their wedding day. Photo / Getty Images
The Duke and Duchess on their wedding day. Photo / Getty Images

"We enjoy each other's company; we allow each other to blossom. I know it sounds like a fairytale but that's the way we are,"

Fergie told Harper's Bazaar in 2011 she didn't regret their marriage and would have fought harder for Andrew to stay in the UK if she had to do things a second time.

"I love him. He's my soulmate. It's actually what we said in front of God at the altar: We honour and respect each other until death do us part. The only thing is, he has girlfriends and I have boyfriends," she said.


Fergie admitted in 2011 that she had "little" understanding of money thanks to her lavish — but restrictive — life as a member of the royal family.

"I went to Buckingham Palace and lived on the second floor and suddenly you have to remember to tell someone if you're leaving, then you have to order your food in time because the kitchen is two miles away, you have to not open your curtains, you have to have so many restrictions,' she told Hello! magazine.

"I got to a point where I didn't know what to do. When we got divorced I just had to get on with it but I didn't understand things about money, probably because I never had to."

As her marriage to Andrew fell apart, Fergie built up an overdraft of ₤5 million with the Queen's bank Coutts, according to the Daily Mail.

Her staggering debt and reportedly small divorce settlement saw Fergie become a real working royal.

The Duchess of York raised eyebrows within royal circles when she decided to taking on speaking engagements and signing a multimillion-dollar ambassador contract with Weight Watchers in the US.

Fergie told Harper's Bazaar in 2007 she had chosen a small divorce settlement in order to stay on good terms with the Queen, with her decision to divorce a financial one.

"I wanted to work. It's not right for a princess of the royal house to be commercial, so Andrew and I decided to make the divorce official so I could go off and get a job," she said.


Despite the best intentions her financial troubles continued into the 2000s, with Fergie's lifestyle company Hartmoor collapsing in 2009 after just three years in operation.

Princess Beatrice the Duchess of York and Prince Andrew in 2016. Photo / Getty Images
Princess Beatrice the Duchess of York and Prince Andrew in 2016. Photo / Getty Images

According to The Telegraph, Hartmoor had more than $US1 million in debts when it closed, with an insider saying it "was not run well".

Fergie's money troubles eventually saw her embroiled in a scandal of epic proportions in 2010, when UK tabloid The News Of The World secretly filmed the Duchess reportedly selling access to her ex-husband to a fake Indian businessman for ₤500,000.

She later told Oprah Winfrey that she had been drinking and had substantial debts when the video was filmed, but strongly denied her ex-husband had any prior knowledge of her meeting.

"I was in the gutter at that moment," Fergie said. "I'm aware of the fact that I've been drinking, you know — that I was not in my right place."

During her 2011 US TV series Finding Sarah, Fergie revealed her life would probably be a lot different if it wasn't for Andrew, who she openly admits paid off her debts.

"It's just because my ex-husband's so nice that he lets me be a guest at his house. If I didn't have him I'd be homeless," she said.

But it seems despite the scandals, 2018 has seen Fergie welcomed into the royal clique once again, with an invite to Harry and Meghan's May wedding as well as a starring role at her daughter Eugenie's nuptials.

But Fergie herself admits she still gets into "endless trouble", blaming it on her childlike energy.

"It's who I am. It gets me into endless trouble. People think you're impossible or difficult if they can't relate to you, if you don't take life seriously. But the key to me is that I look at life with a child's sense of excitement and joy," she told the Daily Mail.