Why Prince Andrew’s birthday will be hit with a major change this year

It follows the royal's decision to step back from official duties.

prince andrew birthday major change fly flags
(Image credit: Getty)

Prince Andrew’s birthday is set to be celebrated quite differently this year. The royal hit headlines with a controversial interview last year.

  • Prince Andrew’s birthday is set to be celebrated a bit differently this year after a change to government policy.
  • The royal hit headlines back in the autumn with a controversial interview that he took part in.
  • In other royal news, the Queen’s oldest grandson Peter Phillips has confirmed his split from wife Autumn after 12 years of marriage.

Prince Andrew’s birthday is set to be hit with a major change this year.

The royal hit headlines back in November when he gave a controversial interview surrounding the Jeffrey Epstein scandal.

Prince Andrew gave an interview to BBC Newsnight as he addressed his link to the convicted sex offender.

MORE: Prince Andrew’s interviewer Emily Maitlis reveals moment in the interview that ‘changed everything’

The ‘car crash’ interview saw the royal deny claims that he had forced accuser Virginia Giuffre (then Virginia Roberts) to have sexual relations with him when she was just 17 years old.

Following the backlash that the Prince was hit with, he went on to step back from royal duties just days later, taking himself out of the spotlight.

And now it has been revealed that a major change in protocol will be implemented for the Duke of York’s upcoming 60th birthday, which will take place on the 19th February.


British councils have been informed that they will no longer need to fly flags for royals’ birthdays.

According to The Guardian, government officials were considering changing the policy in “changing circumstances, such as when members of the royal family step back from their duties”.

This would include the Prince, as he stood down from royal duties back in November, and could also even affect the Duke and Duchess of Sussex now that they have stepped back as senior royals.

MORE: Princess Eugenie breaks Instagram silence since Prince Andrew stepped down with emotional post

The Government then revealed that there is now “no requirement to fly flags on the 19th February following the decision by the Duke of York to step back from public duties for the foreseeable future”.

There’s no word on if or when the Prince will return to public duties yet, and he is also expected to defer his military promotion, which originally would have implemented on his 60th birthday.

Aleesha Badkar
Aleesha Badkar

Aleesha is digital shopping writer at woman&home - so whether you're looking for beauty, fashion, health or home buys, she knows all the best places to splash your cash. She earned an MA in Magazine Journalism from City, University of London in 2017 after graduating from University of Leeds in 2014 with a BA in English and Spanish (which took her to Madrid for a fun Rioja and tapas-packed year). Aleesha has worked for woman&home since 2019, when she joined the team as their digital news writer. A year on the news team gained her quick and reactive writing skills and a love for breaking stories, invaluable insight into where to get the best lifestyle releases first, an AOP awards nomination and the nickname ‘crazy watch lady’ after she became so obsessed with the royals that she followed breaking news alerts on her Apple Watch.

Before joining the woman&home team, Aleesha wrote for their sister site GoodtoKnow, where she covered celebrity news, health advice and where to snap up the cheapest lifestyle buys. With a background in beauty, Aleesha has also written for Stylist and Women’s Health where she developed an understanding into what makes a stellar product and which brands are worth paying attention to. She never leaves the house without a slick of lip balm and a good slathering of SPF, cannot live without an eyelash curler by her side and is always on the hunt for new lipsticks to add to her ‘Lipstick of the Day’ Instagram story highlight (and color-coordinated collection).

But it’s not just beauty buys Aleesha can help you with. Social media savviness, strong PR relationships and a need to stay in the know mean she’s all about the latest fashions, clever gadgets and reliable lifestyle buys too. She loves indulging in an interior craze (with a bedroom drowned in prints, plants and pink), is a regular visitor to the Missoma and Edge of Ember 'New In' pages and can’t resist the allure of a kitchen gadget—just ask her three coffee machines.

When she’s not playing around with new products and testing anything she can get her hands on, Aleesha spends most of her time with her head in a current bestseller, catching up on the latest Netflix craze with her sister, trying out new recipes, drinking wine with her bestie and (in non-COVID times) has been known to be a bit of a jetsetter amongst her friendship group. Oh and she makes the most of her Disney+ subscription by watching the Marvel films on repeat (definitely not just for Chris Evans...).

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