Both Andrew and Harry have been stripped of their royal patronages and military titles amid the former’s ongoing court battle and the latter’s decision to quit ‘The Firm’ and move to North America with his wife Meghan Markle.
In a further blow to Andrew and Harry, they will also now both not be eligible for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee medal next month having lost their honorary military titles, according to the Daily Telegraph. The commemorative medal will be awarded on February 6 to mark the Queen’s 70 years on the throne and given to serving members of the Armed Forces, police, fire, emergency and prison services.
Members of the Royal Family holding honorary military titles will also be eligible – and the only veterans who receive the award will be recipients of the George Cross or Victoria Cross. Now that Harry and Andrew have lost their military titles, this means the duo will be treated like all other veterans and not receive the special medal. Last Thursday, the Queen removed Andrew’s honorary military roles and he gave up his use of the HRH style.
Andrew is thought to still be at his 31-room Royal Lodge home and allegedly hosted around a dozen family friends on Friday including Princess Eugenie and her husband Jack Brooksbank before a shoot at Windsor Great Park. The Queen’s move last week was a humiliation for Andrew and came one day after the lawsuit against him took a big step forward when a judge threw out his motion to dismiss the sexual assault case and ruled it can go to trial.
Andrew, who was born an HRH, will not use it any official capacity, and was also stripped of his remaining royal patronages in a decision which represented the Duke of York’s complete removal from official royal life. The dramatic move was also seen as an attempt to distance the monarchy from Andrew, who was once second in line to the throne as the spare to the heir, in the year of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
It comes as Andrew was accused of a ‘tone-deaf’ defence in his legal battle with Virginia Giuffre – who used to be known as Virginia Roberts – after his lawyers suggested she may have ‘false memories’ of her encounters with him. Meanwhile an security expert said yesterday that Harry should learn from his aunt Princess Anne, who gets police security only when on royal duties, an expert said yesterday.
The Duke of Sussex, who now carries out no royal engagements, has threatened legal action unless he gets Met Police security, which he would pay for, when he is back in the UK from California. Yesterday ex-royal protection chief Dai Davies said Princess Anne ‘doesn’t get full time protection now and yet in 1974 she was nearly kidnapped – her protection officer was actually shot’.
The ex-chief superintendent added: ‘Her security is now adapted according to risk. There just isn’t a large pool of officers to pick and choose from.’ Of Harry and wife Meghan he said: ‘They both have such egos that they expect the treatment. ‘The fact is, many senior royals are losing their protection. They’re not going to take officers away from other royals or other duties to protect him.’
Royal insiders say there is no backing for the prince’s demands at Buckingham Palace. Harry is now seeking a judicial review of the decision to strip him of his UK police protection team, claiming it is ‘too dangerous’ to visit without Scotland Yard bodyguards. Lawyers acting for Harry have written a ‘pre-action protocol’ letter to the Home Office, threatening to go to the High Court if his family are not provided with security while they are in Britain.
A government spokesman said the UK’s security system was ‘rigorous and proportionate’ and that it was long-standing policy not to provide detailed information about such arrangements It is also unprecedented for the judiciary to get involved in matters of royal protection, which are signed off by an independent committee and the Home Secretary.