The Duchess of York yesterday enjoyed her first night out since her operation for breast cancer at a gala dinner to mark the opening of The Wolseley restaurant in the City, London’s legendary business centre.
“I have always faced adversity and happiness with the same attitude: put your front foot forward and recognise that whatever happens I am so lucky, and so many face bigger challenges,” she told The Independent.
In June, Sarah Ferguson revealed that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer following a routine mammogram and had undergone a mastectomy. She has shared on social media an update on her treatment and recovery often praising the support of her daughters Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie.
“I feel blessed to be well and to have looked cancer in the eye and not blinked. I know that I am so lucky and that I still want to celebrate life,” the duchess said, while mingling with London’s great and good.
She was joined by rock stars Nick Mason from Pink Floyd and Duran Duran’s Nick Rhodes and iconic film director Gurinder Chadha who directed the classic romcom Bend it like Beckham, the most widely screened British film, even in North Korea.
Also there were Nadira Naipaul, journalist and widow of a Nobel laureate VS Naipaul. “It is great to be out tonight and to see a great name in hospitality have such a spectacular first night,” the duchess added.
Other big City names at the first night were Sean Doyle, CEO of British Airways, Ken Murphy, CEO of Tesco, Tim Steiner, CEO of Ocado, Anabel Kindersley, CEO of Neal’s Yard, and hairdresser to Bollywood’s biggest stars, Dar.
The new restaurant is seen in the City as an indicator of optimism in difficult economic times with the five star £10m restaurant opening next to Bank tube station, just by the Bank of England. It mirrors the design and menu of the original Wolseley restaurant in Piccadilly. It takes the place of the House of Fraser boutique, in the heart of the City.
Other luminaries at the first night included Sir Nicholas Coleridge, the retiring chairman of the Victoria and Albert Museum who has been appointed the new Provost of Eton College and actor John Standing, co-star Michael Caine in the new film The Great Escaper, Also at the new eatery were the editors of the London Evening Standard Dylan Jones and Tatler Richard Dennen.
Three new British film stars in the limelight were Genevieve Gault, Esme Lonsdale and Hannah Howland, who play young versions of the veteran co-stars Diane Keaton, Patricia Hodge and Lulu in the new Sky film, which will be released next month.
Arthur’s Whisky is a charming, feel-good comedy about living in the moment. When Hodges’s husband in the film dies, she discovers he had invented an anti-aging elixir that literally takes the years off.
The Duchess of York revealed she is in the middle of talks for a new royal book and documentary about Prince Albert’s parents with revelatory twists and turns about Queen Victoria’s consort.
“I am so thankful to feel well and be well. there is so much to celebrate and be thankful for which is why I came out tonight to celebrate with friends, she said.