Prince in strip club gaffe

2010-03-12 20:10

London - Queen Elizabeth II's gaffe-prone husband Prince Philip proved that at 88 he is as undiplomatic as ever, when he asked a young sea cadet if she worked in a strip club, newspapers reported on Friday.

The former naval officer, infamous for his colourful off-hand remarks, was visiting cadets in Exeter, southwest England, when he put the question to Elizabeth Rendle.

The 24-year-old, who works as a barmaid in a nightclub, was asked what she did for a living.

"I just said that I worked in a club and then he asked, 'oh, what, a strip club?'", she told The Daily Telegraph newspaper. "Obviously I said 'No' and then he said 'Oh, it's a bit too cold today anyway'.

"I was quite surprised but I think he was just trying to lighten the mood. It was a joke and we were all laughing which drew everyone else's attention to us.

"I don't think he put his foot in it, it was a joke and I didn't take any offence. I think he was just putting people at their ease."

The Duke of Edinburgh's comments are usually intended to put the other person at ease when meeting royalty but they have often landed him in hot water on foreign visits.

Past royal outtakes include: "Still throwing spears?" – when quizzing an Australian Aborigine during a 2002 visit and, to a 13-year-old boy dreaming of flying in a spacecraft: "Well, you'll never fly in it, you're too fat."

During a state visit to China in 1986, he warned a group of British students: "If you stay here much longer, you'll all be slitty-eyed."