With the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations due to take place in 2022, the Royal Family are reportedly keen to maintain the focus on Her Majesty and to ensure that the civil case against Prince Andrew doesn’t “overshadow” the milestone moment. Former royal butler and commentator Grant Harrold told Express.co.uk that it is “very difficult” to know how Prince Andrew’s involvement in the Jubilee will take form, as he is currently facing allegations of s*xual abuse. The Duke of York has denied all claims made against him.
Speaking to Express.co.uk about Prince Andrew’s presence at the Jubilee, Mr Harrold said: “It’s very difficult to know how he would be able to go back doing normal duties until it’s resolved one way or another.
“One thing you can see on social media, there’s a lot of strong feelings about it from both sides and I think the dangerous bit and what you don’t want to do, they don’t like to overshadow this.
“It’s what they kept saying in Prince Philip’s funeral, the possibility that Meghan was going to come over and obviously concerns that that would take the focus away, and I think that’s the thing that no one in the family would try to do intentionally is try to take that away.
“I think what’s really important is…because there seem to be so many things that have gone wrong for them in recent months, I think when they have these special occasions, people normally rally around the Queen.”
When asked about the impact of the allegations on the reputation of the Royal Family, Grant Harrold said that the monarchy was aware that their future is not “guaranteed”.
He continued: “Everybody loves the Queen, even if you’re a Republican I think it’s safe to say you still have respect for the Queen, but these occasions are a chance for people to get together, to celebrate that we’re lucky to have a monarchy and obviously from their point of view, they’re very aware that in the world we’re living today, nothing is guaranteed.
“We hope and pray that we have a monarchy, but nothing is guaranteed.”
The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee is due to take place between the 2nd-5th of June, 2022, and will see the Royal Family take part in a number of celebratory engagements to mark her 70 years on the throne.
It is unclear yet if Prince Andrew will participate in the festivities.
The Duke of York has been accused of s*xual abuse on three occasions after his accuser filed a civil case against him under New York’s Child Victims Act.
Virginia Robert Giuffre is a former accuser of convicted s*x offender Jeffrey Epstein, who was a friend of the Duke’s during the 1990s and 2000s. Following his arrest in 2019, under the charge of s*x trafficking and s*xual assault, Epstein killed himself in prison.
Ms Giuffre is alleging that Prince Andrew s*xually abused her in the London home of former Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell, and twice at Epstein’s homes in Manhattan and the US Virgin Islands.
She claims that Prince Andrew acted in full awareness that she was 17 years old and that she was “a victim of s*x trafficking”.
In recent developments to the case, Prince Andrew’s legal team have acknowledged that legal papers have been served. They have until October 29 to formally respond to the lawsuit.
Prince Andrew has consistently denied all allegations made against him.
In 2019, he told BBC journalist Emily Maitlis that the alleged abuse “never happened”.
During the televised interview with BBC Newsnight, he said: “It didn’t happen. I can absolutely categorically tell you it never happened. I have no recollection of ever meeting this lady, none whatsoever.”
Source: EXPRESS CO UK