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Camilla: expert in the “rude” message to Andrew Parker Bowles
Tonight, Channel 5 is broadcasting a documentary called “Princess Anne: The 7 Loves of her Life” which will delve into the love life of the Princess Royal. The program will detail his romance with Andrew, who Anne was dating in the early 1970s, around the time Charles first met Camilla. Anne and Andrew have been seen together on several occasions, but the couple were not to be, as Andrew is Roman Catholic and therefore their marriage was ‘out of the question’.
The princess, as the only daughter of Queen Elizabeth II, head of the Church of England, would not have been allowed to marry a Catholic, especially since at the time this would have meant that she would be removed from the line of succession.
The Act of Settlement of 1701 excluded Catholics or their spouses from becoming monarchs.
However, this obsolete rule was changed in 2013 with the Succession to the Crown Act.
The law removed the historic disqualification of a person who married a Catholic from the line of succession and removed the requirement for those outside of the first six people in line to the throne to seek the ruler’s approval to marry.
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Princess Anne and her friend Andrew Parker Bowles dated in the early 1970s
Andrew Parker Bowles married Camilla
At the time, Anne was fourth in line, but she is now 16th in line for the throne, recently pushed back by the birth of baby Lilibet.
The law also abolished male primogeniture, which gives preference to sons over daughters in the line of succession.
A Channel 4 documentary titled “The Real Princess Anne” previously explained that in the early 1970s the press was very interested in who Anne was dating and might end up getting married.
The narrator said: “Most members of the press kit were much more interested in the company she was running and if they could marry her.
Princess Anne married Mark Phillips instead
“Could it be Olympic gold medalist Richard Meade, who shared his passion for horseback riding, or more intriguing, Andrew Parker Bowles, 26, not yet married to Camilla?
“He and Anne were often seen together, but he was a Roman Catholic and for a royal, which effectively put marriage out of the question. “
Royal biographer Sally Bedell Smith added that Andrew was “an unlikely candidate for marriage to a member of the royal family” for the same reason.
The love quadrangle between Charles, Camilla, Anne and Andrew was a hot topic in the Netflix series The Crown, but the two couples eventually broke up.
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Princess Anne and Andrew remain friends to this day
Instead, Anne married Captain Mark Phillips in 1973, with whom she had two children, Peter Phillips and Zara TIndall – and she now has five grandchildren too.
However, Anne and Mark’s were a rather unhappy marriage that ended in divorce in 1992.
Meanwhile, Andrew married Camilla Shand in 1973 as well, having two children together, Tom Parker Bowles and Laura Lopes, but divorced in 1995 after the two had an affair.
Charles, of course, married Lady Diana Spencer in 1981, having Prince William and Prince Harry together.
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After an excruciating time known as the Welsh War, they finally broke up and divorced in 1996.
Charles and Camilla, who rekindled their romance while they were both still married, could finally talk openly about their relationship and get married in 2005.
Princess Anne, meanwhile, had an affair with the Commander of Queen’s Squire Timothy Laurence.
Their indiscretion was exposed when love letters from Tim were stolen from Anne’s briefcase and sent to the Sun in 1989.
She quickly separated from Mark and divorced in 1992, remarrying Tim later that same year.
Andrew Parker Bowles is Zara Tindall’s godfather
Although their romance does not work out, Anne and Andrew remain good friends to this day.
Ms Bedell Smith said: “Even when their romance finally ended, they remained lifelong friends.”
Anne and Andrew have a lot in common, including a shared love of horses and they are often pictured enjoying horse racing together.
Andrew is even the godfather of Anne’s daughter, Zara.
‘Princess Anne: The 7 loves of her life’ airs tonight on Channel 5 at 8 p.m.