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Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson excluded from Princess Beatrice's wedding pictures

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PALAVER: This official wedding photograph of Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi outside the Royal Chapel of All Saints at Windsor with Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip

PALAVER: This official wedding photograph of Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi outside the Royal Chapel of All Saints at Windsor with Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip

PA

PALAVER: This official wedding photograph of Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi outside the Royal Chapel of All Saints at Windsor with Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip

It was, by any measure, a royal wedding like no other.

On the side of tradition, there was a beaming couple, a chapel laden with flowers, and the bride's beloved grandparents at its heart.

But in almost every other respect, the wedding of Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi was unrecognisable as a British royal wedding. As the royal family adhered to Covid-19 rules, the princess and her beau wed in lockdown, with a handful of socially distanced family members, no hymns nor national anthems sung - though they were played.

And as official photos of the newly-weds were released, there was another notable difference: the conspicuous absence of the mother and father of the bride in commemorative pictures.

Prince Andrew, aka the Duke of York, walked the princess down the aisle, but in the wake of the Jeffrey Epstein scandal, he did not appear in photos released to the public.

Sarah, aka the Duchess of York, read a poem during the ceremony - but she too was missing from the official pictures.

Instead, Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh were the only members of either family captured for posterity.

In a touching tribute to "granny", Beatrice wore a vintage dress by Norman Hartnell, lent by the queen for the occasion. Remodelled and fitted by Angela Kelly and Stewart Parvin, the queen's dressmakers, it is understood to have first been worn by a young Elizabeth in the late Fifties. Clearly conscious of making the wedding day a special occasion despite the doubly difficult circumstances, the queen also loaned the Queen Mary diamond fringe tiara, which she wore on her own wedding day. Originally made for Queen Mary by Garrard & Co in 1919 from a diamond necklace given by Queen Victoria for her wedding, it has deep royal history.

The wedding had been kept a secret from all but a close-knit few. The only guests were the queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, the couple's parents and siblings, including Princess Eugenie, and the groom's three-year-old son. The boy, known as Wolfie, proudly took the role of best man and page boy.

"The bride was walked down the aisle by her father," Buckingham Palace confirmed. Both best man and father-of-the-bride were spared the traditional challenge of delivering a reception speech by virtue of lockdown, with the duke likely to have instead spoken of his pride in Princess Beatrice during a small family gathering at Royal Lodge.

Despite their 1992 separation and divorce four years later, Andrew and Fergie vowed to remain amicable for the sake of their own two princess daughters - Beatrice and Eugenie. So their exclusion from their eldest child's official wedding photographs, amid a continuing scandal over the duke's links to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, will cut like a knife.

With her father's car crash Newsnight interview casting a dark cloud over their engagement, announced six weeks earlier last September, Beatrice had never intended her wedding to Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi to be a high-profile affair. The global pandemic put paid to their original plan to marry on May 29 at St James's Palace with a reception afterwards at Buckingham Palace hosted by the queen.

But it wasn't just the coronavirus crisis which prompted the couple to hold the first royal wedding behind closed doors in 235 years.

Although Andrew was able to put his troubles aside to walk his beloved daughter down the aisle at All Saints' Church in Windsor last Friday, that he and his ex-wife do not appear in the images released by Buckingham Palace yesterday speaks volumes.

It seemingly wasn't enough for the ceremony to be held in secret - effectively sparing the beleaguered prince from appearing in public.

The powers-that-be had clearly decided it was probably not a good idea for him to feature in the historic pictorial record of the event either. It is undoubtedly a spectacular fall from grace for the 60-year-old royal who had gained a reputation for leaving no one in any doubt of his status as the sovereign's second-born son.

┬ęTelegraph

Telegraph.co.uk