Sarah, Duchess of York and Princess Beatrice of York attend the wedding of Britain's Princess Eugenie of York to Jack Brooksbank. Picture: Toby Melville
Sarah, Duchess of York and Princess Beatrice of York attend the wedding of Britain's Princess Eugenie of York to Jack Brooksbank. Picture: Toby Melville

Fergie opens up on daughters’ disabilities

Former royal Sarah Ferguson has spoken about how her daughters were challenged by their disabilities despite their "luxury upbringing".

The Duchess of York is the mother of Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie who she raised with her ex-husband Prince Andrew.

The Duchess made the comments at an event for her charity Street Child which aims to give vulnerable children in Africa and Asia an education.

She told the Press Association her work had helped keep her "feet on the ground".

She added: "(It's) kept me realising how lucky that my children - Eugenie, as you now know, is disabled with 1 inch metal rods down her back; Beatrice is dyslexic with special needs at school - and yet they had an education.

"So why isn't any other child allowed that same luxury. And why is it a luxury?"

Princess Eugenie has previously written about having scoliosis which is a curvature of the spine. She was diagnosed when she was just 12.

"This was a scary prospect for a 12-year-old; I can still vividly remember how nervous I felt in the days and weeks before the operation.

"During my operation, which took eight hours, my surgeons inserted eight-inch titanium rods into each side of my spine and one-and-a-half inch screws at the top of my neck.

"After three days in intensive care, I spent a week on a ward and six days in a wheelchair, but I was walking again after that."

The princess said staff at London's Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital made her feel "comfortable and relaxed" throughout the procedure.

Last month Eugenie married her partner Jack Brooksbank at Windsor Castle with her mother and father by her side.

The ceremony was widely seen as an entente cordial between Sarah and the royals who have had a rocky relationship since her divorce.


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