The Queen informed Prince Andrew he would be stripped of his royal privileges in a 90-minute meeting, according to royal insiders.
- The Queen told Prince Andrew that his royal privileges would be revoked in a 90-minute meeting, according to a palace insider.
- The Duke of York learned that he will no longer take on public duties and will defend his sexual abuse case as a private citizen during the intimate discussion.
- In other royal news, here's why Princess Anne moved out of luxury London flat after just a few months.
The Queen explained to Prince Andrew how his royal privileges would be withdrawn in a 90-minute meeting at Windsor Castle on Thursday morning, a royal insider has revealed.
The bombshell decision was confirmed to the public later that afternoon, in a terse 42-word post on the monarch's official Twitter page.
"With The Queen's approval and agreement, The Duke of York's military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to The Queen," the statement said. "The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen."
Prince Andrew is currently facing allegations of sexual abuse from Virginia Giuffre, one of the most prominent survivors of Jeffrey Epstein's sex trafficking ring. The Australian-American campaigner has accused the 61-year-old of "committing sexual assault and battery" against her when she was a teenager and is now suing the disgraced prince for damages in a US civil suit.
A New York judge has rejected an appeal from the Duke's lawyers for the case to be dismissed, meaning he could face trial in autumn 2022.
It's understood that the Firm is now determined to fan the flames of the unfolding scandal, especially in the run-up to the highly-anticipated Queen's Platinum Jubilee. Her Majesty is set to mark 70 years on the throne with a fun-filled extended bank holiday weekend this June, but fears are now growing that her second youngest child could overshadow the celebrations.
Concerns over the Royal Family's endangered reputation prompted the Queen to take drastic action last week, but only after consulting with other senior members of the clan on the subject.
“Conversations have been going on for a while,” a palace source told The Times. “The family were always clear that some of the duke’s advisers were too optimistic and these decisions were always going to have to happen.”
It's understood that the Queen summoned Prince Andrew from the Royal Lodge to Windsor Castle on Thursday morning to tell him the life-changing news. The Duke spoke with his 95-year-old mother for an hour and a half, before returning to the 31-bedroom mansion he shares with his ex-wife, Sarah Ferguson. He was accompanied by his lawyer, Gary Bloxsome, for the three-mile car journey each way.
The insider added that "everyone" was involved in the process, with the Queen, Charles, and William's private secretaries sorting out the fine print.
As for Prince Andrew's reaction to the shunning, it's understood that he has accepted it as a necessary move for the Royal Family.
“He is quite sanguine about it. He was mindful of the intense pressures building on the institution and recognized it was the right thing to do," an insider said.
The Queen has been facing demands from the public to renounce Andrew's royal privileges ever since the allegations were first made by Giuffre in 2015, and the pressure has only escalated in recent months.
On Thursday, the Queen, who is the Commander-in-Chief of the Army, Navy, and Air Force, received an open letter from more than 150 British veterans asking that the Duke's honorary military roles be "dishonorably discharged." The Queen has also been hit by widespread demands from the public to revoke the prince's title, the Duke of York, which was created when he married Sarah Ferguson in 1986.
Emma is a news writer for woman&home and My Imperfect Life. She covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health or lifestyle story. When she's not reporting on the British monarchy and A-list celebs, you can find her whipping up vegan treats and running the roads to cheesy '90s pop music...but not at the same time, obviously.
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