The seeming exodus from the Royal Family over the past six months could come with a serious penalty for those who chose, or were forced, to step down.
As Harry and Meghan begin their period of ‘transition’ into non-senior royals, the disgraced Duke of York is also laying low having retired as a full-time member of the royal family, and it turns out all three stand to lose a major privilege associated with the crown.
Senior royals enjoy round the clock security protection from the metropolitan police, but now the British Home Office is considering downgrading the Prince after his early retirement.
The home office has conducted a review into the arrangement with a decision said to be pending.
“A review was ordered into the Met’s protection of HRH The Duke of York once it was announced he was stepping down from royal duties in November,” a source told The Evening Standard.
“Those in charge of royal security cannot write a blank cheque for anyone who does not have a public role for the foreseeable future. Round-the-clock armed protection is very expensive. The Met is obliged to review the position to ensure it is justified.”
The final decision resides with senior government figures and is an issue Harry and Meghan have also been reportedly facing in the wake of their shock step down.
The pair removed a statement on their website earlier in the week claiming they are entitled to security going forward.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are classified as internationally protected people which mandates this level of security,” the original statement read.
In the same boat to Prince William, the pair would not be automatically allowed access to taxpayer-funded security if they resign as members of the royal family.
Prince Andrew stepped down from public duties in November 2019 after being engulfed in a scandal involving convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
Andrew, Queen Elizabeth's second son, denies any allegation that he had sex with a 17-year-old girl procured for him by his friend Epstein, the financier who killed himself in a US prison while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges.
The scandal has escalated since Andrew's rambling explanations in a disastrous BBC TV interview which aired on Saturday, which left many viewers incredulous, and his apparent lack of compassion for Epstein's victims drew widespread condemnation.
Got a story tip or just want to get in touch? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org