Buckingham Palace is one of the best-protected places in the world, and the Queen has armed guards follow her just about everywhere, so how did Michael Fagan get a very private audience with the Queen back in the 1980s? The incident was one of the worst security breaches in British history, and yet it didn’t happen once. Fagan managed to gain entry to her rooms on two separate occasions.
If you’ve seen The Crown and watched the season four episode “Fagan”, you’ll be aware of the story, but you won’t know all the facts. On July 9th, 1982 Fagan managed to break into Buckingham Palace at around 7 am. He’d been drinking the night before, so this wasn’t a skilful entry into the property like some cat burglar. He just climbed a drainpipe and got in through an unlocked window. He took his time wandering around the palace. He perused King George’s stamp collection and managed to trigger an alarm. Thankfully for him, the security guard dismissed the alarm as a glitch.
There are a lot of details that didn’t make it into The Crown season 4 maybe because they’re just too odd. In an interview with The Independent, Fagan said, “I found rooms saying ‘Diana’s room’, ‘Charles’s room’; they all had names on them. But I couldn’t find a door which said ‘WC’. All I found were some bins with ‘corgi food’ written on them. I was breaking my neck to go to the toilet. What do I do? Pee on the carpet? So I had to pee on the corgi food. I got into Charles’s room and took the wine off the shelf and drunk it. It was cheap Californian.”
Sat on the throne
Apart from looking at stamp collections and drinking wine and relieving himself, he also sat on the throne. “I was loving it. It was like Goldilocks and the Three Bears; I tried one throne and was like ‘this one’s too soft’. I was having a laugh to myself because there was one right next to it, so I tried another…I liked the picture and thought I’d look at it till someone comes, but nobody came.”
Image – Shaun Jeffers - Shuttershock