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Princess Eugenie’s dress tribute to hospital after childhood back surgery

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The low back feature was specifically requested by Princess Eugenie, who had surgery at the age of 12 to correct scoliosis, a Palace spokesman said.

Princess Eugenie requested a low back for her wedding dress following an operation on her back when she was 12 (Steve Parsons/PA)

Princess Eugenie requested a low back on her wedding dress to show the scar from a childhood scoliosis operation as a tribute to the hospital where she was treated.

The dress, designed by by British-based Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos, featured a neckline that folds around the shoulders to a low back that drapes into a flowing full length train, Buckingham Palace said.

The low back feature was specifically requested by Eugenie, who had surgery aged 12 to correct scoliosis, a spokesman added.

Princess Eugenie wedding
The low back on Princess Eugenie’s wedding dress reveals the scar from her surgery for scoliosis to treat a curvature of the spine at the age of 12 (Toby Melville/PA)

The princess has spoken of the importance of showing “people your scars” and is a patron of the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital Appeal.

Eugenie was diagnosed with scoliosis when she was 12 years old and received treatment at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital (RNOH), undergoing a successful operation to straighten her spine.

The Queen’s granddaughter invited representatives from the RNOH NHS Trust to attend her wedding to Jack Brooksbank on Friday.

The couple tied the knot at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle, with members of the public and charity representatives on the guest-list for the grounds.

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The Duke of York walks his daughter Princess Eugenie down the aisle for her wedding to Jack Brooksbank at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle (Danny Lawson/PA)
The Duke of York walks his daughter Princess Eugenie down the aisle for her wedding to Jack Brooksbank at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle (Danny Lawson/PA)

Ahead of her big day, the princess reflected on the surgery and the importance of the charity during an interview with ITV’s This Morning.

She told host Eamonn Holmes: “I’m patron of their appeal and I had an operation when I was 12 on my back, and you’ll see on Friday, but it’s a lovely way to honour the people who looked after me and a way of standing up for young people who also go through this.

“I think you can change the way beauty is, and you can show people your scars and I think it’s really special to stand up for that.

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“So that’s one really important one.

“But separate to that, other organisations that are there, it’s just very important that they get a chance to be honoured for the work that they do constantly, so it’s lovely that I can share this special day with them.”

Princess Eugenie dress was designed by British-based Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos (Victoria Jones/PA)
Princess Eugenie dress was designed by British-based Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos (Victoria Jones/PA)

The princess is also patron of the European School of Osteopathy, a world-renowned provider of undergraduate and postgraduate level osteopathic education.

Among the guests watching on from outside St George’s Chapel was Andrew McNamee, whose daughter Sadie, 9, is due to undergo surgery for scoliosis in January.

The policeman, 42, from Manchester, said: “She is a source of inspiration for my daughter.

“She has always been into her princesses but to have a real life princess who is a source of inspiration, is going to help her through the this time.”

He added: “That is exactly the dress my daughter wanted to see today.”

Lauren Oram, who joined Mr McNamee, his daughter and others as guests in Horseshoe Cloister opposite the steps of the chapel, had an operation for scoliosis aged 14.

She said she was glad to see the princess making a “statement” with the low back of her dress on her wedding day.

The hairdresser, 18 and from Worcestershire, said: “I think she should just be proud of her scar and others should be too. By her doing that she is making a statement.

“It was so beautiful and elegant.”

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