Princess Margaret’s unexpected reaction to blunt remark from major star as she ‘bent to his will’

Princess Margaret’s unexpected reaction to a very direct statement from a musician was ‘almost the only time in her life’ she did this

Princess Margaret’s unexpected reaction explained. Seen here visiting the Royal Asscher Diamond Company in Amsterdam,
(Image credit: Photo by Les Lee/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Princess Margaret’s unexpected reaction to a blunt remark from a major star might surprise some as the rebel royal “bent to his will’.’ 

As the Queen’s sister, Princess Margaret moved in glamorous circles and was never one to shy away from enjoying life. From Princess Margaret’s romances that captured imaginations to Princess Margaret’s keeping guests waiting, she often forged her own path. But whilst her approach was regularly surprising, Princess Margaret’s unexpected reaction to a blunt remark from a major star is shocking in a totally different way. 

Sharing the revelation in Part 1 of the BBC’s 2018 documentary, Princess Margaret: The Rebel Royal, her unauthorized biographer Craig Brown discussed the moment Princess Margaret met The Beatles in 1965.

Princess Margaret meets The Beatles,

(Image credit: Bettmann via Getty)

“The Beatles were beating the Royal Family, in terms of celebrity,” Craig explained. “It was a moment in the 60s where, suddenly, you know, these lads from Liverpool had greater adulation than the Queen and her family.” 

Jane Stevens, the Princess’ friend and Lady-in-Waiting, recalled going to The Beatles with her, describing it as all “shouting crowds and masses of teenagers.”

She continued, “We went behind the stage afterwards, just spoke to them for a few minutes. I mean, it was Paul McCartney and John Lennon. It was very entertaining cos he was sort of bright, different and funny.”

Meanwhile, Craig Bown reflected upon a hilariously blunt interaction between Princess Margaret and George Harrison during this special meeting. And according to the biographer it was Princess Margaret’s unexpected reaction to a comment that handed the star a “great victory”.

Princess Margaret shakes hands with George Harrison

(Image credit: Photo by Getty Images)

“There was always this protocol that you weren’t allowed to eat before the Royal Family. George Harrison, not knowing of that protocol or not caring about it, and only 21, went up to her and said, ‘Sorry, I’m hungry and we’re not allowed to start eating until you’ve left’,” he declared. 

Craig added, “And Princess Margaret, almost the only time in her life, bent to his will and said, ‘In that case, we’d better be going.’ And they did actually leave, so it was a great victory for George Harrison and democracy.” 

Whilst some fans might’ve expected Princess Margaret to have been offended by George’s very direct comment, it seems she was “bent to his will” and didn’t seem to mind leaving him to eat in peace. Craig also expressed his belief that this was a very rare occurrence and “almost the only time” she’d done as she was asked by a star like this, making Princess Margaret’s unexpected reaction all the more significant.  

A Royal lunch in the Guildhall, London

(Image credit: Photo by Reg Speller/Fox Photos/Getty Images)

This protocol is one of many rules surrounding royal mealtimes. It’s understood that guests are supposed to mirror the monarch’s behavior and so when they stop eating, everyone else must too - even if they’re not finished! And it’s apparently signaled by a special button, according to royal author Bryan Kozlowski in his book, Long Live the Queen! 13 Rules for Living from Britain's Longest Reigning Monarch, citing former royal chef Darren McGrady. 

"Once the Queen puts down her cutlery, an ever-watchful page behind her presses a button on a handheld zapper, which sends a literal green-light signal to the kitchen, ushering in the next course," he explained. 

Emma Shacklock

Emma is a Royal Editor with eight years experience working in publishing. Her specialist areas include the British Royal Family, ranging from protocol to outfits. Alongside putting her royal knowledge to good use, Emma knows all there is to know about the latest TV shows on the BBC, ITV and more. When she’s not writing about the next unmissable show to add to your to-watch list or delving into royal protocol, Emma enjoys cooking, long walks and watching yet more crime dramas!