Analysis: Will the royals try to bring Prince Andrew back to public life?

The latest sentencing verdict against the queen’s second son was handed down by councilors in the northern English city of York, who on Wednesday voted unanimously to deprive his prince of his Freedom of the City.

This honor was bestowed upon him in 1987, and its removal sends a strong message: Andrew, the Duke of York, is unwanted at the place from which he takes his royal title.

The initiative was backed by parties across the political spectrum. The largest group in the council, the Liberal Democrats, said in a statement: “We have made it clear that it is not appropriate for Prince Andrew to represent York and its people. The removal of this title sends the right message that we as an assistance to victims of abuse. “

Despite the conclusion of the civil case, Andrews long association with Epstein has ruined his reputation as a senior royal.

York councilor Darryl Smalley said the next logical step “would be for Prince Andrew to do the right thing and relinquish his title of Duke of York.”

That title was a wedding gift from the Queen, and it would require a vote in the UK Parliament to have it revoked. Nobody has made such a proposal yet. But if they do, and it goes through, Elizabeth must sign it into law in her role as head of state. It would be the ultimate indignity of the prince, who has already had to agree to stop using the title “His Royal Highness” after being deprived of his royal duties and protections by his mother.

Andrew walked with the Queen down the hall at his father's memorial service.

It may not get to that point. York Central MP Rachael Maskell has suggested that Andrew could voluntarily relinquish his title.

There is no suggestion from Prince Andrew that he plans to do so. If he did, his last remaining title would be “Prince,” which is a birthright for every son of the monarch. Again, a law would be required from Parliament to remove it.

Andrew was stripped of his military titles and charitable patronage in February. A royal source told CNN at the time that he would no longer use the style of “His Royal Highness” in any official capacity, adding that the decision was “widely discussed” among the royal family.

Neither Buckingham Palace nor Andrew’s personal spokesman had any comments on the vote in the York council, but the fact that the prince continues to snatch headlines ahead of the Queen’s Platinum anniversary celebration in June will be frustrating for those involved in the build-up.

And it is still unknown whether the royal family is inclined to relinquish pressure on Andrew or go the opposite way by gradually trying to reintroduce him into public life.

Although he no longer has an official role, he is still part of the family. Therefore, we saw Andrew at Prince Philips’ memorial service, which was televised, but which was primarily a family event. Eyebrows were raised as Andrew showed up and walked his mother down the hall to her seat – a reminder that public anger will not dictate every decision the palace makes.

The family will now consider whether or how Andrew should be integrated into the anniversary events. The current mindset is that he will not be involved in the more formal and official matters, but we can see him when the family makes his traditional appearance on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.

DON’T MISS IT

Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex visited a high school in St. Louis.  Lucia April 28, 2022.

Another tough royal trip in the Caribbean.

Prince Edward and Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, have become the second royal couple in a matter of weeks to face awkward questions about the monarchy’s place in the world while touring the Caribbean.

The Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda told the couple that the nation wants to “one day become a republic” at a face-to-face meeting on Monday, months after Barbados took the step and severed formal ties with the queen.

Edward, Queen Elizabeth’s youngest child, laughed nervously in response to the comments, according to the British news agency PA Media, which was on the trip.

Prime Minister Gaston Browne also raised the issue of compensation for slavery, an issue that has often emerged in protests in recent months.

Edward and Sophie faced small but consistent demonstrations on the fringes of their official engagements during the multinational tour. In St. Lucia chose a small group of activists a royal walk. A protester told the PA: “We want compensation now. The Queen of England has to apologize for the slavery.”

The couple already canceled one part of their tour at the last minute and suddenly announced last week that they would not be visiting Grenada. No justification was given for the postponement.

Royal tours have long attracted activists, but the tone of these demonstrations has changed in recent months as the concept of republicanism has moved into the realm of reality in some nations.

It would once have been extraordinary for a Commonwealth leader to tell senior royals in front of the press that they want to leave the monarchy. But Edward and Sophie must have expected the problem to show up this time.

Sophie and Edward pose at a performance in St.  Lucia.
Their journey follows a disastrous trip to the Caribbean by Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge in March. That visit was derailed by large protests and clumsy photo shoots of the couple. Although Wessex’s visit has not yielded the same setback, it does show the complex concerns that the royals have to navigate when touring the Commonwealth.
The royal family’s connections to slavery date back to the 16th century. Queen Elizabeth I provided slave trader John Hawkins with his own vessel “specifically for the purpose of capturing Africans on the West African coast,” according to an article in Britain’s national archives. Subsequent members of the royal family invested heavily in the slave trade, and many of the magnificent stately homes in Britain today were built on the profits of slavery and colonial exploitation.

Prince William spoke on the subject during his march in March, discussing Britain’s historic role in slavery in his only speech during the couple’s stop in Jamaica, condemning the “abominable” practice and expressing his “deep grief.”

But some protesters are demanding a more concrete response, such as a formal apology from the royals or compensation payments to the affected countries.

In parts of the Commonwealth, the legacy of slavery is still at the center, and as these issues continue, the global reach of the monarchy may decline further.

WHAT HAPPENS THERE?

The Queen is back in Windsor.

Elizabeth II was in a cheerful mood when she returned to Windsor Castle after a week-long break at her property in Sandringham. The Queen met with the President of Switzerland on Thursday and was able to attend the state opening of parliament in two weeks ahead of her anniversary celebrations in early June. Observers will be relieved to see her back at work. In the last few months, the Queen has suffered from Covid and was forced to withdraw from Easter due to mobility issues.

The Queen received the President of Switzerland at Windsor Castle on Thursday.

Charles pays tribute to journalists in Ukraine.

“You are incredible, but it can not be easy.” It told Prince Charles BBC reporters Lyse Doucet and Clive Myrie, who have spent several weeks in Ukraine covering Russia’s invasion while visiting London’s headquarters in London on Thursday. He was there to toast the 90th anniversary of the BBC World Service and praised journalists for delivering the “impartial truth” from conflict areas. “It takes a hell of a lot of courage,” he added, speaking to Doucet. The future of the BBC, and in particular its global production, has been called into question since the British government cut funding for the network in January.

Ed Sheeran and corgi dolls sign up to encourage the queen.

Details emerge of the public festival marking the Queen’s Platinum anniversary in June – and it sounds like an eclectic show. A musical tribute by Ed Sheeran will be included in the £ 15 million Platinum Jubilee Pageant, it was confirmed on Tuesday. A bunch of corgi dolls will also take center stage in what the organizers say will be a scene of “humorous chaos” at The Mall outside Buckingham Palace. Other highlights include singer Cliff Richard, an aerial artist suspended under a giant helium balloon, a group of maypole dancers and a moving wedding cake who will play Bollywood hits. We reserve the verdict until the big day.

PHOTO OF THE WEEK

Breaking news: Prince Charles and Camilla try to broadcast from the set of BBC News in London. Charles said he had seen journalists “shaking on the roofs” during their reporting from Ukraine.

“We defend those who need to defend. Service and sacrifice are in our blood and you will never forget it.”

Prince Harry

Prince Harry gave a powerful speech to the competitors to close the Invictus Games in the Netherlands. The tournament he founded was twice postponed due to the pandemic and finally held its fifth edition this month in The Hague.

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