Princess Anne’s dress ripped open as she ‘somersaulted’ during failed kidnap
Princess Anne was held at gunpoint in 1974 by three men who tried to kidnap her but ended up just tearing her dress open.
A video of the much-loved royal being interviewed about it has gone viral on social media nearly 50 years later.
Anne, Princess Royal, survived her kidnapping attempt back in 1974 after an Escort driver, Ian Ball, attempted to capture the Princess who had just visited Buckingham Palace with her at-the-time husband, Mark Philips.
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Her car had come to a stop and Ball jumped out brandishing a pistol, with personal protection officer to the Princess Royal, Inspector James Beaton, attempting to detain Ball.
He suffered a gunshot wound to the arm after his Walther PPK jammed and Ball opened fire.
Two other men were injured by Ball including Anne's chauffeur and a nearby journalist who had attempted to intervene.
Ball then approached Anne and told her he intended to kidnap her and hold her ransom, with various sources citing anywhere between £2million to £3million.
He claimed to want the hostage money to give to the National Health Service to fund its mental health treatment, and told Anne to get out of the car, to which Anne allegedly responded: "Not bloody likely."
Boxer Ronnie Russell, who happened to be passing at the time, attacked Ball and bought the Princess Royal some time for police to arrive, and as a reward he was given a medal and the mortgage on his home was paid off by the Queen.
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And given the country's love for Princess Anne, who is often seen as one of the most well-respected Royals around, a video of her being interviewed by Michael Parkinson a few years later has once again gone viral.
Posted by Andrew Cusask, he called her a “bad a*s”.
In the video, she gives her no-holds-barred account of what happened, in her own special way.
She said: “In the process of getting the (car) door open, the back of my dress split and the shoulders went.
“I lost my rag at that stage.
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“I could reach the door handle behind my head, and I opened the door and literally pulled my feet over my head and did a backwards somersault onto the road.
“I waited . . . I got back in the car and shut the door – he legged it off into the park and was smothered by the local rugby team.”
The video clip prompted another outpouring of love for Anne.
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One wrote: “Yeah, they really picked the wrong Royal.”
And a second posted: “The sang-froid of Princess Anne would chill a stadium's worth of gins and tonic, and yet warms with unflappable self-possession.”
A third added: “What a Queen she would have made!!”
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