Sir David Suchet recalled that the invitation to lunch with the Queen was a “hoax”, as he paid homage to her “sparkling” demeanor.
The veteran actor, best known for playing Hercule Poirot in the long-running detective series Agatha Christie, was invited to a private lunch at Buckingham Palace on his birthday in 1990.
Suspecting it was a prank by a friend, his wife of about 40 years, Sheila Ferris, called the number provided in the invitation and was answered by staff at the Palace.
Sir David, who was knighted in the 2020 Birthday Honors for services to drama and charity, recalled the story on ITV’s Good Morning Britain on Sunday.
The 76-year-old said: “My great memory, of all the times I find myself at their company, is actually 1990 on my birthday.
“Just before my birthday, I received an invitation to have lunch with His Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh during one of her ‘meet people’ lunches.
“My wife and I thought it was a hoax because it was my birthday, which was May 2.
“Sheila called and rang for a mate and the man at the end said ‘Buckingham Palace’ and she slammed the phone down and said, ‘It’s true, this is real!’
“So I went and had lunch at the Palace and it was unusual because I had met her before on the mission and this was off-duty.”
Sir David described the late king as “very relaxed, very smiley and sparkling – and it was a very happy occasion”.
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He added that it was during this meeting that the Duke of Edinburgh taught him how to peel and eat mangoes, a technique he used in the 1991 episode of Poirot Theft Of The Royal Ruby.
Sir David said: “It was the famous occasion where the Duke of Edinburgh taught me how to peel a mango.
“And that mango peeling became a Poirot episode.
“In fact, in the episode, I was asked as Poirot, ‘Where did you learn that?’ and I said, ‘A certain duke taught me’. “
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/david-suchet-recalls-thinking-birthday-invite-to-lunch-with-queen-was-a-hoax-41997952.html David Suchet recalls thinking the invitation to a birthday lunch with the Queen was ‘a hoax’