Royal Lodge, the official residence of Prince Andrew, recently faced an unexpected intruder who was graciously welcomed by the castle guards.

According to a report in The Sun, a smartly dressed woman arrived at Royal Lodge on Monday, telling security that she is engaged to the Duke of York, and has a lunch appointment with him. She even managed to convince the guards to pay her taxi fare, before she entered the castle grounds.

Explaining the error in judgement made by the guards, a source explained: "She was apparently very smartly dressed, in suit trousers, a yellow blouse and peach jacket, and had her hair done up and full make-up. She cut quite a glamorous figure and the guards were completely taken in by her."

"The woman demanded they pay her cab fare as she was a close friend of Prince Andrew, and they obliged before helpfully pointing her on her way towards the Royal Lodge. They had no idea this woman was a total stranger to Andrew and seemingly had a fixation with him," the insider clarified.

The woman went on to spend around 20 minutes roaming the gardens, before she entered the main residence, which Prince Andrew shares with his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, and asked a member of the staff to tell her the Duke's whereabouts as she had arrived to marry him. It is understood that the 61-year-old was also in the castle at the time. She was finally detained in the lobby after security officials realised their mistake.

The woman, who identified herself as Irene Windsor, was a 44-year-old Spanish national who arrived in the country on Saturday. Maps of the Royal Lodge as well as other royal residences including Buckingham Palace were also found on her. The police initially arrested her on suspicion of burglary, but she was later sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

A security review is being carried out at the royal residence in Windsor, which is just a short ride from Windsor Castle, where the Duke's mother Queen Elizabeth II's is currently staying. The unusual break-in comes months after Andrew's police protection was scaled back as a part of cost-cutting measures and his exit as a senior royal due to public uproar over his alleged involvement with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. The remaining private security at his residence is provided by the Privy Purse, the Queen's private income.

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Prince Andrew Photo: AFP / JOHN THYS