Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, has splashed out UKP20,000 on a birthday present for ex-husband Prince Andrew.
Sarah, who split from Andrew in 1992 after six years of marriage, has commissioned royal artist Basia Hamilton to paint a portrait of the couple’s two daughters, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie as she wanted “something different” to mark his 48th birthday on February 19.
Basia told the Daily Mail: “This painting is special because it’s for the prince’s birthday and was supposed to be a secret. I haven’t started painting them yet, but we are talking about when and where they can sit for me. They couldn’t do it this week because Eugenie has been ill.”
Basia, a close friend of the Duke of Hamilton, has previously painted portraits of the late Queen Mother and Pope John Paul II as well as the Sultan of Brunei.
Her agent Christopher Wood said: “Basia’s had an astonishing career painting various members of the royal family and she is great fun.”
A friend of the duchess said: “Basia has worked closely with the duchess’ Children In Crisis charity and has donated money from the sale of her paintings to the charity in the past.”