Prince Charles and Prince William Want Prince Andrew to Stay Away From Royal Duties

Published November 25th, 2019 - 10:01 GMT
Britain's Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, and Britain's Prince Andrew, Duke of York stand with other members of the Royal Family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. (AFP/ File Photo)
Britain's Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Britain's Queen Elizabeth II, and Britain's Prince Andrew, Duke of York stand with other members of the Royal Family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. (AFP/ File Photo)
Highlights
Duke of York facing backlash over his friendship with paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.

Prince Andrew is to ‘stand back’ from his charity patronages in a sign of his deepening humiliation over the Jeffrey Epstein scandal, it was revealed yesterday.

Aides to the Duke of York said he would step aside temporarily, but sources suggested his older brother Prince Charles and nephew Prince William would oppose any future return to royal duties.

Charles is expected to fly home to Britain today after a tour of New Zealand, raising the prospect of a showdown between the brothers over Andrew’s disastrous decision to speak publicly about his relationship with convicted paedophile Epstein.

A new poll found six out of ten people believed it had damaged the reputation of the Royal Family and a slim majority believed he should be banned from public events such as Trooping the Colour and Remembrance Sunday.

Plans for a glittering reception at Buckingham Palace to mark Prince Andrew’s 60th birthday in February have been mothballed following public revulsion over the Newsnight interview.

Representatives from his charities, business sponsors and military affiliations would have been invited to the party, but many have attempted to distance themselves from him since the programme was shown.

During the BBC interview, Andrew denied claims he had sex with a 17-year-old girl, Virginia Roberts, but admitted he had ‘let the side down’ when he visited Epstein’s home in New York – two years after the billionaire financier’s conviction for soliciting a minor for prostitution.

The decision to go ahead with the interview was initially said to have been sanctioned by the Queen, but a royal source told the Sunday Times she had not given her approval and Andrew had not told her anything about what he planned to say.

The Queen was said to be ‘deeply frustrated’ that the scandal had overshadowed the rest of the Royal Family’s work although she remained ‘privately supportive’ of her second son, according to the source.

She effectively sacked him from royal duties last week after her heir Prince Charles and second in line to the throne, Prince William, asked her to intervene.

A source told the Sunday Times William had spoken to the Queen and Charles about Andrew’s future and believed his removal from public life was ‘the right thing to do’. They said: ‘William is becoming more and more involved in decisions about the institution [the monarchy] and he’s not a huge fan of his uncle Andrew.’

Andrew agreed to withdraw from public duty but initially wanted to remain a figurehead for some 200 charities and other affiliations. But he was forced to back down after many made it clear they no longer wanted his backing.

At least 23 organisations have either dropped him or accepted his resignation, including the English National Ballet, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Outward Bound Trust.

Several sponsors have also dropped their backing for his Pitch@Palace business initiative and the project has been told to find offices outside of Buckingham Palace.

There were calls for the duke’s business dealings and private finances to be scrutinised by the public finance committee, Parliament’s financial watchdog.

A spokesman insisted he would continue to work on the venture, now rebranded as Pitch. She added: ‘The duke will be stepping back from public duty and temporarily standing back from his patronages. The duke will continue to work on Pitch and will look at how he takes this forward outside of his public duties, and outside of Buckingham Palace.

‘We recognise there will be a period of time while this transition takes place.’

Andrew still remains a figurehead for several military organisations, including as honorary Colonel for the Grenadier Guards. Sources said some regiments felt ‘awkward’ about him featuring on their Christmas cards, but his military affiliations are expected to remain in place for now – although the Palace has said he would not take part in any events.

Royal biographer Penny Junor said she believed Andrew would be unable to return to royal duties after the scandal. ‘He’s absolutely finished, she told the Sunday Times. ‘If he is no longer representing or supporting the monarch in any capacity, or doing good charitably, what’s the point of him?’

She effectively sacked him from royal duties last week after her heir Prince Charles and second in line to the throne, Prince William, asked her to intervene.

A source told the Sunday Times William had spoken to the Queen and Charles about Andrew’s future and believed his removal from public life was ‘the right thing to do’. They said: ‘William is becoming more and more involved in decisions about the institution [the monarchy] and he’s not a huge fan of his uncle Andrew.’

Andrew agreed to withdraw from public duty but initially wanted to remain a figurehead for some 200 charities and other affiliations. But he was forced to back down after many made it clear they no longer wanted his backing.

At least 23 organisations have either dropped him or accepted his resignation, including the English National Ballet, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Outward Bound Trust.

Several sponsors have also dropped their backing for his Pitch@Palace business initiative and the project has been told to find offices outside of Buckingham Palace.

There were calls for the duke’s business dealings and private finances to be scrutinised by the public finance committee, Parliament’s financial watchdog.

A spokesman insisted he would continue to work on the venture, now rebranded as Pitch. She added: ‘The duke will be stepping back from public duty and temporarily standing back from his patronages. The duke will continue to work on Pitch and will look at how he takes this forward outside of his public duties, and outside of Buckingham Palace.

‘We recognise there will be a period of time while this transition takes place.’

Andrew still remains a figurehead for several military organisations, including as honorary Colonel for the Grenadier Guards. Sources said some regiments felt ‘awkward’ about him featuring on their Christmas cards, but his military affiliations are expected to remain in place for now – although the Palace has said he would not take part in any events.

Royal biographer Penny Junor said she believed Andrew would be unable to return to royal duties after the scandal. ‘He’s absolutely finished, she told the Sunday Times. ‘If he is no longer representing or supporting the monarch in any capacity, or doing good charitably, what’s the point of him?’

This article has been adapted from its original source.


© Associated Newspapers Ltd.

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