Prince Andrew’s role in the Royal Family is to be “played down” at Prince Philip’s 100th birthday celebrations, according to a source. Among the events in the making to mark Prince Philip’s milestone birthday next June, there is an exhibition being organised by The Royal Collection Trust.
And people working on this event have been asked not to feature prominently pictures of Prince Andrew, the insider claimed.
They told the Sun: “There is a warning from up high to play down Andrew.
“He will be included as little as possible.
“It’s not whitewashing history because you can’t leave him out entirely.
“But it will not make a big deal of his relationship with the Duke of Edinburgh over the years.
“This is obviously proving difficult because he is his son and it’s playing down his role in the family.”
The Royal Collection Trust said: “Plans are not yet confirmed.”
Almost ten years ago, the Trust, which looks after British royal residences and their art pieces, organised a special exhibition to mark the Duke of Edinburgh’s 90th birthday.
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This event took place at the Inner Hall at Windsor Castle between February 2011 and January 2012 and featured pictures and portraits of Prince Philip taken during his early years, his time in the Navy and royal duties.
The exhibition also included memorabilia such as models of satellites, maps and passes to events.
Prince Andrew stepped back from public duties in November last year, a few days after his disastrous interview with Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis.
The Duke of York wanted to set the record straight on his relationship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
However, after the interview aired, he was hit by backlash from commentators and the public for saying he did not regret “as a whole” his association with the former financier.
Prince Andrew was also accused of not expressing sympathy for the victims of Epstein.
The Duke, who wholly denies any wrongdoings, announced on November 20 in a personal statement he would temporarily step back from royal duties.
Explaining the reasons behind this move, Andrew said: “It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein have 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.
“Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I may step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission.”
Since November, the Duke has been seen in public only a handful of times and never at official events.
Most notably, Prince Andrew was not included in the pictures of Princess Beatrice’s private wedding shared by Buckingham Palace.
Speaking about the father-of-the-bride absence from pictures of the Royal Wedding, the Queen’s former press secretary Dickie Arbiter said: “A wedding day is always special to the bride, but it’s also a huge event for their mother and father too.
“So it’s tragic for Beatrice that neither of the two official images feature her parents, to whom she is so close.
“But it’s a sign of how far Prince Andrew has fallen.”
Describing the decision not to include Andrew in the official pictures as “highly unusual”, the expert added: “His absence from his eldest daughter’s private wedding photographs was perhaps to be expected, if highly unusual.
“Presumably this was in deference to public opinion.”