A New Theory About Princess Margaret and Peter Townsend’s Relationship Has Emerged
Their romance may have started earlier than was previously thought.
Here’s a bit of color to add to the lore of Princess Margaret. Thanks to an otherwise insignificant detail revealed to Margaret’s recent biographer, a hypothesis has arisen that the princess’s doomed romance with Peter Townsend may have actually started earlier than was previously believed.
According to the Daily Mail, an anonymous person approached Craig Brown—author of Ma’am Darling: 99 Glimpses Of Princess Margaret and Daily Mail columnist—while he was on his book tour with notes from “official papers” taken during a visit with 4th Earl Granville, governor of Northern Ireland, at Hillsborough Castle.
The short version: Princess Margaret had been in Belfast to launch the Union-Castle liner on October 16, 1947, a month before appearing as the bridesmaid in her sister, Queen Elizabeth II’s wedding. In the log book from that month, it’s stated that Townsend, who often looked after Princess Margaret at the request of King George VI, asked that he be moved to a different bedroom—the one adjoining Margaret. She was 17 at the time; he was 32, and married with children.
Townsend later admitted to developing feelings for Margaret four years after that trip, in 1951; it wasn’t until six years after that visit that their relationship was unceremoniously outed when Margaret famously removed a bit of fluff from Townsend’s lapel at the Queen’s coronation in 1953. The rest was history; eventually, their ill-fated affair would inspire the most heartbreaking storyline in The Crown Season 1.
The Daily Mail is raising its eyebrows at this new detail, but only in conjecture. It’s not even clear what sort of process was embarked upon to authenticate the papers, though Brown says they came from a curator of a National Trust castle. This is also the biography that insists Margaret once tried to rig her tumbler with matchboxes, so she could drink and light up a cigarette without missing a beat—so at best, its assertions should probably be taken with a large grain of salt. Still, like so many of the rumours surrounding the modish, controversial Margaret, it‘s ever-intriguing.
Source: vanityfair com
Tags: Princess Margaret and Peter Townsend, Princess Margaret, Peter Townsend