Unwelcome attention

Image copyright Getty Images

The timing of the news that Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson have bought a luxury Swiss chalet is unfortunate from the perspective of Buckingham Palace.

It focuses attention again on the life that Prince Andrew can afford to lead.

And on the relationship he continues to enjoy with a woman he divorced 19 years ago and who has declared that they are "the happiest divorced couple in the world".

The prince has a modest naval pension and is funded out of his mother's private income.

His ex-wife once had debts of five million pounds.

Together, they've managed to secure a mortgage and buy a Swiss chalet worth millions.

Those around the duchess are keen to stress that the couple haven't borrowed any money from any individuals.

Jeffrey Epstein, the registered sex offender, who once loaned Sarah Ferguson £15,000, hasn't bankrolled this purchase.

The Queen, with her substantial but never disclosed private wealth, may well have underwritten this loan, taken out by the parents of two of her grandchildren.