Princess Anne’s ex-husband, Captain Mark Phillips, was accused of having an affair with a journalist that forged a close friendship with them.

Decades ago, Angela Rippon became so amused with Phillips’ expertise as an equestrian that she decided to write a book about him. Princess Royal and her ex-husband hosted Rippon at the Gatcombe House.

When the reporters caught up with Rippon’s latest venture at that time, they started spreading rumors that Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip’s only daughter was having an affair with Phillips. During a previous interview, Rippon called the reporters who spread lies about her as “dirty-minded.”

“I went through the most dreadful time. It was so sexist – the worst of the tabloids at work. But it was deeply embarrassing and incredibly upsetting. I was there doing a professional job,” she told The Telegraph.

Rippon’s book on Phillips, titled “Mark Phillips: The Man and His Horses,” was published in 1982. Ten years later, Princess Anne and Phillips’ divorce was announced.

The royal couple’s marriage was a tumultuous one. Very early on, Princess Anne didn’t want the public to know that she was dating the professional equestrian. As such, she came up with a trick to keep him hidden while they are out in public.

In the Channel 4 documentary “The Real Princess Anne,” it was revealed that Princess Anne didn’t also tell anyone about her plans to marry Phillips until much later on.

Robin Ludlow, the Queen’s former press secretary, asked Princess Anne a couple of times if she was planning on marrying Phillips, and she said no. As such, when the press asked Ludlow about Princess Anne’s plans, he also said that there won’t be a proposal anytime soon.

But to everyone’s surprise, Princess Anne and Phillips suddenly tied the knot. And by the looks of it, even Her Majesty was surprised by their decision. The royal couple’s marriage ended eventually due to both parties’ alleged infidelity.

Princess Anne
Pictured: Princess Anne Princess Royal, Admiral of the Royal London Yacht Club is seen during the Royal London Yacht Club Champagne Party at Lendy Cowes Week at the Royal London Yacht Club on August 6, 2018 in Cowes, England. Getty Images/Chris Jackson