Prince Andrew ‘has no long-term future’ at his Royal Lodge home, King Charles ‘privately believes’ despite reports the Duke of York was allowed to stay there ‘indefinitely’
King Charles is privately convinced that Prince Andrew has ‘no long-term future’ in his Royal Lodge home, despite apparently giving him more time to raise the money to stay there.
It follows reports that the beleaguered Duke of York has been given permission by the monarch to stay at his Windsor mansion ‘indefinitely’ after they ‘settled a new deal’.
The pair are at loggerheads over Charles’s demand that Andrew and his ex-wife, Sarah, move the 30-room royal property – which has problems with damp and needs several million pounds worth of repairs – to a smaller site, such as Harry and Meghan’s old home, Frogmore Cottage.
The Mirror reported this week that Andrew, 63, had been granted a ‘stay of execution’ after Charles accepted that his brother would be given time to prove he can afford the upkeep of the mansion.
Buckingham Palace has refused to become involved in the issue. However, several well-placed sources in royal circles have told the Mail that the prince is not being ‘realistic’ about his financial situation after he was forced to step back from his public duties due to the Jeffrey Epstein scandal and was stripped of his annual allowance – believed to be around £ 250,000 lie – culled by the king.
The disgraced Duke of York is said to have spent more than £200,000 on roof repairs at the royal mansion this summer.
King Charles personally believes Prince Andrew has ‘no long-term future’ in his Royal Lodge home
Andrew, who took over the late Queen Mother’s long-term home, has poured up to £7million of his own fortune into renovations
A family friend said: ‘It’s all a bit cloud cuckoo land I’m afraid. No one, not least His Majesty, believes there is any realistic chance that the Duke of York can keep the roof of the Royal Lodge over his head in the long term.
‘It is a huge building and an estate that requires a huge amount of maintenance.’ Another added: ‘To be honest, I didn’t expect the Duke of York to live in Royal Lodge long term. If he could afford the upkeep, he would like to stay. But the chances of that happening are honestly slim.
“He and the Duchess… are rattling around in a huge property that they simply can’t afford.”
The King has no right to kick his brother out because Andrew took over the late Queen Mother’s Grade II listed building from the Crown Estate in 2004 on a long-term lease and financed many millions of pounds worth of renovations. If King Charles were to persuade him to move, the Crown Estate could even owe Andrew money.
But the sovereign lives not only by what it looks like for an unemployed ex-king to live in such palatial surroundings, but also by the lucrative income that Royal Lodge could bring in as a rental property on the open market.
“The Duke is clearly not going down without a fight,” an insider noted. “This will probably all end in tears. Most likely from him.”