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The real reason behind Sarah Ferguson's last-minute shoe change at Queen's funeral

Sarah, Duchess of York made a quick change

fergie funeral
Melanie Macleod
Melanie MacleodWellness Editor
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Sarah Ferguson looked poised at Queen Elizabeth II's funeral in a military-style coat dress.

READ: 'Heartbroken' Sarah Ferguson wears statement accessory for the Queen's funeral

Her dress featured a Peter Pan collar, waist-cinching belt, button-down design and flared cuffs, and she teamed the formal gown with a pair of elegant heels for the service at Westminster Abbey. However, eagle-eyed royal watchers noticed that Sarah underwent an outfit change on the day.

WATCH: Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie look after mum Sarah Ferguson

For Queen Elizabeth's committal in Windsor, Princess Eugenie and Beatrice's mother swapped into a pair of demure flat shoes, walking arm in arm with Princess Eugenie.

READ: Why Sarah Ferguson attended the Queen's funeral – but not Prince Philip's

MORE: Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie spark confusion at the Queen's funeral

Swapping from heels to flats is a well-practiced move among heel-lovers, but Sarah Ferguson had a particularly important reason for her shoe switcheroo.

In 2019, the mum-of-two revealed she had complex surgery on her feet to rejuvenate them after they were damaged in childhood. The Duchess went to the Bahamas to undergo regenerative stem cell therapy.

sarah ferguson funeral heels

Sarah Ferguson began the day in heeled shoes

"I think my toes were ruined by all the riding I did when I was young," Sarah Ferguson said. Her regenerating surgery involved the bone on her big toe being shaved.

READ: Sarah Ferguson and the Queen's sweet mother-daughter bond following royal divorce

"Then they implanted stem cells — 20 million of them taken from my midriff — into my feet to make new cartilage," she continued.

fergie flats funeral

Sarah Ferguson switched into flat shoes

The procedure takes a couple of weeks to recover from, and the effects tend to take up to six weeks to make themselves known, but the Duchess was thrilled with the procedure, saying she was able to walk perfectly in heels afterwards.

The results from the procedure only tend to last a year, and given that three years have passed since the surgery, it's likely the Duchess needs a top-up session to keep herself pain-free - hence why she switched into a comfortable pair of flat shoes. 

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