Daily Mail

Ephraim Hardcastle

- Email: john.mcentee@dailymail.co.uk

WHY did Charles summon Andrew for a dressing down before the Queen died? The Birkhall meeting left Andrew in no doubt that his return to the royal fold was never going to happen. A source whispers that Charles had been tipped off by the Queen’s senior staff that Andrew’s persistent lobbying of the ailing monarch to restore him as a ‘working royal’ was taking its toll. Andrew knew that if his mother didn’t rehabilita­te him then all hope was gone. A crucial question posed by Charles was, in the event of Andrew’s restoratio­n, which charity would want him?

WILLIAM could be spared a Prince of Wales investitur­e after Welsh Senedd speaker Elin Jones called for the ceremony to be ‘consigned to history’. He certainly won’t be replicatin­g his dad’s Ruritanian experience wearing an ornate gold coronet with an orb on top that was actually a table tennis ball painted gold. Charles’s head had been wrongly measured by the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths with the Queen remarking: ‘It extinguish­ed him like a candle-snuffer.’

APPEARING at the Cenotaph, the Duke of kent had a brass button missing from his field marshal’s greatcoat. It’s not the first time he’s suffered a wardrobe malfunctio­n. On the Buck House balcony in June, alongside the Queen for what would be her last Trooping the Colour, he wore the sash of the Order of St Michael and St George on the wrong shoulder. Does the duke, one of the oldest members of the Royal Family at 87, need a new valet?

EMMA Thompson was awestruck at her first Hollywood party after winning an Oscar for

1992’s Howards End. ‘Anthony Hopkins, Faye Dunaway and Jack Nicholson were there. All these people knew each other and were used to stepping over Robert Mitchum drunk on the floor. I felt so dislodged and out of it like a geography teacher from north-west London.’ How did Emma, pictured at the Oscars, navigate the comatose Mitchum?

DElIVERANC­E director John Boorman was asked by U2 manager Paul McGuinness to help promote the band before they were famous. ‘He came up and played me some of U2’s music and asked if I could make a pop video for them,’ recalls Boorman, 89, who is quitting Ireland for Surrey after 50 years. ‘The music didn’t appeal to me at all so I declined.’

APPROVING of handsome actor Jonny Lee Miller’s casting as her ex-lover Sir John Major in The Crown, Edwina Currie enthuses: ‘Goodness me, if Mr Major had wanted to pick a particular actor he couldn’t have done better.’ Your turn at the tap end Edwina!

MEETING the Queen at the Royal Academy of Arts, Sir Rod Stewart wasn’t tongue tied. ‘I said “Ma’am, I picked up my knighthood today”. She asked who did it and I said William and she said, “Did he get it right? Because if he didn’t, I shall tell him off”.’

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