It is known that Ward, who was a gifted artist, painted a picture of the Prince. Pictured: The drawing
The Crown links Prince Philip to the Profumo Affair: Uproar as new series implicates Duke of Edinburgh in one of Britain's most damaging sex scandals
The new series of The Crown links the royal to the Profumo Affair in the early 60s
In one scene, the Queen confronts him about his relationship with Stephen Ward – the fixer who ‘procured women’ for leading members of the Establishment
Elizabeth is also shown conspiring to keep the details out of the public domain
By CHRIS HASTINGS FOR THE MAIL ON SUNDAY
PUBLISHED: 22:00 GMT, 25 November 2017 | UPDATED: 07:32 GMT, 26 November 2017
The new series of The Crown has provoked uproar by implicating Prince Philip in the Profumo Affair which scandalised Britain in the early 1960s.
In one fictitious scene, the Queen confronts her husband about the nature of his relationship with Stephen Ward – the high-society osteopath and fixer who ‘procured women’ for leading members of the Establishment.
Elizabeth – played by Claire Foy – is also shown conspiring to keep details of Philip’s involvement out of the public domain.
The new series of The Crown has provoked uproar by implicating Prince Philip in the Profumo Affair which scandalised Britain in the early 1960s. Pictured: Claire Foy as The Queen +6
The drama’s decision to implicate Prince Philip in one of Britain’s most damaging sex scandals comes just days after the couple celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary.
Historians last night accused the programme – made by American entertainment giant Netflix – of ‘crossing a line’.
The Profumo scandal of 1963 was sparked by the revelation that John Profumo, the then Minister of War, had had an affair with nightclub hostess Christine Keeler while she was also dating the Russian military attache, Yevgeny Ivanov.
Profumo resigned in disgrace and Ward, who had befriended Profumo, Keeler and her friend Mandy Rice-Davies, killed himself before he was sentenced for living off immoral earnings.
It is known that Ward, who was a gifted artist, painted a picture of the Prince. But the new series of The Crown, written by Peter Morgan, goes beyond historic fact in a scene where Philip reacts favourably to Ward’s offer of a weekend away with guests including Keeler and Rice-Davies.
The two men meet in April 1962 when the Prince seeks Ward’s help for neck pain. The pair quickly hit it off when they discover they have a mutual friend in Mike Parker, the Prince’s former Private Secretary who – according to The Crown – led the Prince astray on nights out and Royal visits.
Ward suggests the Prince joins them for a weekend party. Philip is drawn towards a portrait on a mantelpiece. When he asks whose portrait it is, Ward replies: ‘Oh Christine. She’ll be there and Mandy will be there too.’
Philip then replies: ‘Do you know my neck’s feeling better already.’
The episode then leaps forward to 1963 and the breaking scandal in the news. Rumours begin to grow that a ‘mystery man’ photographed with his back to the camera at one of Ward’s parties is Philip. The Queen’s worst fears are compounded when she learns that detectives found a portrait of Philip in Ward’s flat. When the Queen confronts Philip, he insists he never attended any of the parties.
Royal historian Christopher Wilson said the producers of the show were becoming ‘increasingly elastic’ with the truth. He added: ‘I think the show has crossed a line and stepped out of reality into fiction.’
Biographer Margaret Holder said rumours about Philip’s involvement in the scandal persisted to this day. But she said the episode had clearly gone beyond what was a matter of public record.
Christine Keeler was unavailable for comment. But a friend of Keeler said he was unaware that she had ever met Prince Philip.
A spokesman for Buckingham Palace declined to comment.
Duke of Edinburgh features in Profumo affair show
Prince Philip's connections to Stephen Ward, who killed himself over the Profumo affair, are to feature in Andrew Lloyd Webber's new musical.
Duke of Edinburgh features in Profumo affair show
The Duke of Edinburgh may find it hard to ignore the forthcoming show by Andrew Lloyd Webber about the Profumo aAffair
Tim Walker. Edited by Richard Eden7:30AM GMT 02 Feb 2013
The Duke of Edinburgh will, no doubt, overlook a one-woman musical opening on Saturday night, Pat Kirkwood is Angry, which quotes from private letters that he wrote to the late actress.
He will, however, find it harder to ignore the forthcoming West End show by Andrew Lloyd Webber about the Profumo affair.
Mandrake hears that the musical will feature claims about Prince Philip’s connections to Dr Stephen Ward, the society osteopath, who was accused of being a pimp. He killed himself on the last day of his trial on charges of living off the profits of prostitution.
Don Black, the Oscar-winning lyricist, who has written the musical with Lord Lloyd-Webber, claims of Ward’s prosecution: “It was all a put-up job by the Establishment to find a scapegoat and shut him up.
"He had a list of [osteopathy] clients that was like a Who’s Who of fashionable London – everyone from Prince Philip to top showbusiness stars. It was embarrassing for many at the top – he had to be shut up.”
Dr Ward boasted of a 15-year friendship with the Duke, whom he painted at Buckingham Palace in 1961.
The musical, which is due to be read for the first time this month to a select audience of West End figures, will tell the story of the 1963 downfall of John Profumo, who was the secretary of state for war in Harold Macmillan’s Conservative government.
Profumo resigned after admitting that he had lied to Parliament about his role in the scandal, which contributed to the Tories’ election defeat the following year.
Profumo was involved in a sexual relationship with Christine Keeler, a showgirl, who was also sleeping with Yevgeni Ivanov, the senior naval attaché at the Soviet Embassy. They were introduced by Ward.