Prince Andrew 'could be banned' from royal church service with The Queen this Christmas
5 December 2019, 10:32
The Duke Of York could miss out on the tradition following the Jeffrey Epstein scandal.
Prince Andrew could be banned from attending the traditional royal church service at Sandringham with The Queen on Christmas Day over fears there could be protests.
It is thought that campaigners may be planning to infiltrate the traditional crowds of royal fans who gather outside the Norfolk church, in response to the recent sex abuse scandal.
A source told The Sun: There are discussions about Christmas day and a desire from many courtiers for Prince Andrew to stay away from the church, where he would be pictured with the rest of the family.
“There are now genuine concerns over sex abuse campaigners planning to be part of the crowds to jeer the Duke publicly.
“They know the world’s media would be there and it would end up dominating headlines of the day.
“There is no real fear from officials about the protest turning violent. It’s more about the further embarrassment it would cause to the Royal Family.”
Prince Andrew's friendship with convicted sex-offender Jeffrey Epstein, who took his own life in prison in August, has been the source of huge scandal over the past few months.
The Duke Of York recently appeared on Newsnight to answer questions about his involvement with the billionaire, as well as respond to allegations that he slept with Virginia Roberts - who was one of Epstein's victims - in the nineties when she was 17 years old. He has denied her claims.
The interview has been dubbed a disaster by many, and he soon after announced that he would be stepping back from public duties 'for the foreseeable future'.
He wrote in a statement: "It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein has become a major disruption to my family's work and the valuable work going on in the many organisations and charities that I am proud to support.
A statement by His Royal Highness The Duke of York KG. pic.twitter.com/solPHzEzzp— The Duke of York (@TheDukeOfYork) November 20, 2019
"Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I may step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission.
"I continue to unequivocally regret my ill-judged association with Jeffrey Epstein. His suicide has left many unanswered questions, particularly for his victims, and I deeply sympathise with everyone who has been affected and wants some form of closure. I can only hope that, in time, they will be able to rebuild their lives. Of course, I am willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required."