Andrew makes surprise appearance at Sandringham – but expert says he'll 'never be working royal' – Daily Mail

By Jamie Phillips For Mailonline


Prince Andrew made a surprise appearance as the Royal Family enjoyed their annual Christmas walkabout at Sandringham – but an expert has insisted he will ‘never be the working royal he once was’.
The Duke of York, 62, walked behind senior royals as crowds lined the road outside the St Mary Magdalene Church for the traditional Christmas Day service on the Norfolk estate.
King Charles was joined by Camilla, the Queen Consort, at the head of the group, while the Waleses walked just behind them alongside their three children George, nine, Charlotte, seven, and Louis, four.
Also present were Andrew’s daughters Beatrice, 34, and Eugenie, 32, and their husbands Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi and Jack Brooksbank.
Prince Andrew, Duke of York attends the Christmas Day service at Sandringham Church
The disgraced duke waves towards crowds who lined the road to get a glimpse of the royals on their traditional walk
Andrew’s invitation was seen by some as a potential olive branch towards the disgraced duke.
But royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams said his appearance is unlikely to mark a return.
He told MailOnline: ‘Andrew’s appearance at the St Mary Magdalene Church at Sandringham today, comes a day after it was reported that he is now not allowed to have an office in Buckingham Palace, retain a small staff or use it as an address. 
‘He is clearly on his own and may recruit his own team as he battles to be rehabilitated.
‘He is still a member of the Royal Family hence his appearance. However, he is not and will never be a senior working royal as he once was. King Charles has made this clear. 
‘He has reportedly also recently been stripped of his taxpayer-funded security detail. The Queen Consort now holds the post of Colonel of the Grenadier Guards which was removed from him, it was previously held by his father Prince Philip.
‘His ratings are at rock bottom and public appearances for him are toxic for the Royal Family. His banishment from the Palace makes that clear enough.’
Another royal biographer said Charles was wanting to make his mark by emphasising ‘tolerance and family harmony’ in the wake of Harry and Meghan’s Netflix series.
The Sussexes were not present for the walk today, nor were they mentioned in the King’s speech. 
‘Charles has invited the Duchess of York for the first time since her divorce from Prince Andrew,’ Sally Bedell Smith said.
‘The Duke of Edinburgh had been the main obstacle to Fergie’s inclusion, and the Queen had arranged for Fergie to stay [at] nearby Wood Farm so she could see her daughters Beatrice and Eugenie after the celebrations at Sandringham.’
King Charles was joined by Camilla, the Queen Consort, at the head of the group, while the Waleses walked just behind them alongside their three children George, Charlotte and Louis
The Waleses arrive at the Christmas Day church service at Sandringham earlier. Pictured left to right: Catherine, Princess of Wales; Princess Charlotte; Prince George; Prince William
Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank pictured walking to the traditional Christmas Day church service 
Princess Beatrice smiles with her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi and her stepson Christopher in Sandringham this morning
The duke pictured outside the church with senior royals during their traditional Christmas walkabout
Andrew speaks outside St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham as he joined other royals
It comes after Charles told Andrew he’s ‘on his own’ in the wake of the scandal over his associations with the late paedophile financier Jeffery Epstein, a source has claimed. 
The Duke of York was told to no longer use Buckingham Palace as an office space, effectively severing his final tie to his old life as a working royal, according to The Sun.
‘Any presence at the Palace is officially over,’ a source told the newspaper. ‘The King has made it clear. He isn’t a working royal. He’s on his own.’
As part of the King’s decision, Andrew will not be able to use the address for any future correspondence. The skeleton staff retained since he stepped down from public duty three years ago now reportedly face being put out of work.
As part of the royal shuffle, the Princess of Wales was promoted to her first Army role, taking over as Colonel of the Irish Guards from her husband.
Prince William will become Colonel of the Welsh Guards instead.
Andrew inherited the position of Colonel of the Grenadier Guards from his late father, the Duke of Edinburgh, when he retired from public life in 2017.
King Charles III laughs as he greets the public in Sandringham on Christmas Day, meeting them as monarch for the first time as he attends the Sandringham service
Following his disastrous BBC Newsnight interview in 2019, he was forced by the Queen to step down from official royal duties.
Up until this year, he’d kept ten military affiliations, including colonel of the Grenadier Guards, while he worked to clear his name amid the scandal of his association with Jeffery Epstein.
He was finally stripped of the ceremonial title earlier this year in the aftermath of his decision to settle a civil lawsuit with one of Epstein’s victims, Virginia Giuffre, who had also accused him of assault.
A settlement was agreed last year, believed to have been in the region of $12million (£9.8million). He has always strongly denied any wrongdoing.
Earlier this year, the Duke of York was left ‘bereft’ and ‘tearful’ when Charles told him, in no uncertain terms, that his days as a working royal were over.
At the time, a source told the Mail on Sunday that ‘Andrew was totally blindsided’ and ‘utterly bereft’, adding: ‘He always believed there was a way back’.
Published by Associated Newspapers Ltd
Part of the Daily Mail, The Mail on Sunday & Metro Media Group


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