Like her beloved sister, the late Queen Elizabeth, Princess Margaret’s influence lives on after her death.
Princess Margaret, known for her glamorous lifestyle but troubled love life, died aged 71 on 9 February 2002 after months of ill health.
“The Queen, with great sadness, has asked that the following announcement be made immediately. Her beloved sister, Princess Margaret, passed away peacefully in her sleep at 6.30 this morning at King Edward VII Hospital.said then in an official announcement from Buckingham Palace.
After suffering several strokes and a period of declining health that left her partially paralyzed and with vision problems, her final stroke the day before her death proved fatal. She was taken to hospital from her home in Kensington Palace. There she died surrounded by her children – Lord Linley and Lady Sarah Chatto.
For many, she is a royal rebel who prefers a party lifestyle. She smoked and was known for her wit and sometimes cruel remarks. But according to biographer Theo Aronson, her reputation didn’t bother her in the least. She once told the French poet and director Jean Cocteau: “Disobedience is my joy”.
However, she always remained loyal to her sister Elizabeth, who became queen when Margaret was 22 years old. Shortly after her sister’s coronation, Margaret announced her engagement to Captain Peter Townsend, but the marriage never took place. The reason is that the royal family cannot allow a divorced man so close to the line of succession.
In May 1960, Margaret married the socialite photographer Anthony Armstrong-Jones, and the glamorous couple, long a fixture on the social scene, had two children: David Albert Charles Armstrong-Jones, known as David Linley, and Sarah Frances Elizabeth Armstrong-Jones, known as Lady Sarah Chatto. After a long stormy marriage, the two divorced in 1978.
Spending much of her time in Mustique, where she has made a home, her lady-in-waiting Lady Anne Glenconner says they have had the best times together wherever they are in the world.
“Often when we were doing formal things, funny things happened”Glenconner told People magazine. “Once we were alone, we could laugh. I’ve never laughed so hard. We were roaring with laughter.”
The royal family asked anyone making donations in Margaret’s memory to direct them to one of the charities she was a patron of: the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, the Guides Association and the Royal Ballet.