Geri Halliwell broke royal protocol by patting Prince Charles on the bum

During the mid 90s, five young British women took the world by storm when they formed to create chart-topping band, The Spice Girls.

Victoria Beckham, Emma Bunton, Melanie Chisholm, Melanie Brown and Geri Horner, formerly known as Geri Halliwell, embodied the true definition of female empowerment and of course, girl power.

As well as their global success and millions of album copies sold worldwide, the Spice Girls displayed an unrivalled level of cheekiness, charm and sass with some members taking all three to the next level.

Known for her fiery red hair and bold personality, Geri was one member who was never afraid to push the envelope, and she certainly did just that when she met Prince Charles.

Being the confident young woman that she was, Geri hit headlines in lightning speed when she broke protocol during her brief engagement with the Royal.

So to celebrate the Prince's birthday, Daily Star has revisited the moment Geri met Charles.

Royal encounter

According to publication Time, the Spice Girls first met Prince Charles at a charity gala for the Prince’s Trust Charity in May 1997.

Although the meeting was relatively brief, it goes down in history for being incredibly scandalous.

The magazine reported that Mel B and Geri both kissed the prince on the cheek, which is a "breach of royal protocol".

Although the pair left evident signs of red lipstick on his face, confident Geri took things a step further which left everyone in the room giggling in surprise.

Geri initially told Prince Charles she found him "very sexy." Then she went on to touch the prince’s behind.

At the time the incident took place, it was widely reported that Geri pinched the Prince's rear, however the Spice Girl strongly refuted the claims years later.

She said: "I didn’t pinch Prince Charles’s bum, as was reported. I patted it.

"Patting him on the bottom was against royal protocol but we’re all human. It was the premiere of our film, Spice World, in the late Nineties. There was a lot of nervous energy – young women, happy antics."

Nelson Mandela meet

Despite the controversy, Prince Charles took his first encounter with Geri and the Spice Girls on the chin and didn't appear to harbour any ill feelings.

In November 1997, Prince Charles and the Spice Girls met again following a charity concert in South Africa.

Charles happily posed alongside the ladies and South Africa’s then-president, Nelson Mandela.

The late President Mandela and Prince Charles were both happy to be amongst The Girls and were happy with their contribution at the event.

The Guardian reported that President Mandela said: "These are my heroes. I don’t want to be emotional, but this is one of the greatest moments of my life."

Prince Charles also shared similar feelings and said: "It is the second greatest moment in my life. The greatest was the first time that I met them."

Personal message

According to the BBC, Prince Charles sent Geri a personal note on May 31, 1998, which was the day after she parted ways from the group to pursue a solo career.

The Prince said: "The group will not be the same without you. What will I do without your wonderfully friendly greeting?"

He also went on to thank her for her charitable work and assistance during her time in the band.

"I really wanted you to know how deeply I’ve appreciated your great generosity to my Prince’s Trust and how much I wish you well for whatever the future holds," he wrote.

Geri was reportedly "very touched" by the letter which received from the Royal at the time.

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