United Kingdom

Prince Andrew working out 'how he can serve the monarchy' as he maps out return to royal duties

Prince Andrew is working out 'how he can serve the monarchy' as he maps out a return to royal duties, it was claimed last night.

The beleaguered Duke of York stepped back from his duties 'for the foreseeable future' following his car crash Newsnight interview with Emily Maitlis last year.

Since then, the 60-year-old has faced a series of controversies leading sources to brand him a 'busted flush' with a 'toxic' presence.

Prince Andrew, pictured on Saturday, is working out 'how he can serve the monarchy' as he maps out a return to royal duties, it was claimed last night

PRINCE ANDREW'S NAME WAS MISSING FROM MAXWELL'S COURT DEPOSITION 

The Duke of York's name was redacted from Ghislaine Maxwell's court deposition documents.

Alleged victim Virginia Roberts Giuffre has accused Prince Andrew of having sex with her when she was 17 years old.

More than 400 pages became public on Thursday for the first time. Maxwell is currently in jail in New York awaiting a sex trafficking trial.

Speaking in her adopted hometown of Cairns in Far North Queensland, American Ms Giuffre said while she was happy the documents were unsealed,  she questioned why several names including that of the Prince were redacted.

She told ABC: 'I feel very angry. 

'I don't understand why we are protecting someone who hides behind mummy's skirt and says "I didn't do it". His name should have been out there in the deposition.' 

In the November interview, he attempted to 'set the record straight' by speaking about allegations that he had sex with 17-year-old Virginia Roberts three times, which he has strongly denied. 

But he was widely condemned for showing a lack of remorse over his friendship with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.

The interview triggered days of catastrophic headlines and caused a string of businesses and charities to desert him.

In March, the Duke of York hired PR expert Mark Gallagher, nicknamed 'the backroom fixer', to deal with the fallout from the scandal.

Now, nearly 12 months on, it appears the Prince is determined to return and resume a public role at some point next year if legal issues with US authorities investigating Epstein, who died in prison, can be resolved.

A source told the Times: 'The duke is spending time working out how he can serve  his country and support the monarchy in the future, and what else he might want to do with his life.

'He's locked down at Royal Lodge [his home on the Queen's Windsor estate], thinking about his future service and public role. He has some clear thoughts.

'He's very sensitive to the public mood and acutely conscious that the public are the  most important stakeholder. He feels he has support from the family, very much so,  including all his siblings and his parents.'

Buckingham Palace, however, is said to have distanced itself from the claims, insisting there are 'no plans to review' the Duke's status. 

The beleaguered Duke of York stepped back from his duties 'for the foreseeable future' following his car crash Newsnight interview with Emily Maitlis last year

n the November interview, he attempted to 'set the record straight' by speaking about allegations that he had sex with 17-year-old Virginia Roberts three times, which he has strongly denied

Any potential comeback would first have to be thrashed out in talks with the Queen, the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Cambridge, palace officials and the government, according to the paper.  

Another source insisted conversations had taken place but admitted the prospect of Andrew resuming an official role would be unlikely. 

The Prince wore a face covering yesterday as he was seen for the first time since bombshell Ghislaine Maxwell files were released on Thursday.

It comes as Maxwell's family claimed she has been treated 'vindictively' and 'cruelly' by prison guards - leading to a bid to free her from jail.

The Duke of York was seen talking animatedly with a passenger as he drove his Range Rover away from his home in Windsor this morning.

On Thursday, a 418-page document was released detailing how Maxwell admitted she had an intimate relationship with Jeffrey Epstein. 

In the bombshell 2016 deposition she refused to discuss their sex life as she dodged questions about orgies, underage girls and Prince Andrew.

Buckingham Palace was approached for comment on claims the Duke was mapping out a return to royal duties.

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