Prince Andrew could be stripped of freedom of York status with City Council to make decision tonight

Earlier this year, the Duke of York reportedly paid millions of pounds in an out of court settlement in the United States

Published

Tonight, York City Council will decide whether to remove Prince Andrew's freedom of the city.

Earlier this year, the Duke of York paid millions of pounds in an out of court settlement in the United States.

Virginia Giuffre sued the Queen's son for allegedly sexually assaulting her when she was a teenager.

The Duke of York reached an out of court settlement with Virginia Giuffre.
The Duke of York reached an out of court settlement with Virginia Giuffre.

Prince Andrew has always denied the allegations against him.The Honorary Freedom was handed to Prince Andrew in 1987 and is usually bestowed to recognise "notable service by distinguished people".

Sir Winston Churchill and Dame Judi Dench are among other recipients.If the motion passes tonight, Prince Andrew will be stripped of his freedom of the city, having previously lost his honorary military titles over his links to convicted sex offender, Jeffrey Epstein.

The Duke of York also agreed to stop using his 'HRH' title.Cllr Darryll Smalley from York City Council, who proposed the motion, points out the Honorary Freedom of York is the "highest honour" that they, as a city, can bestow.

In a statement, he said Prince Andrew's "associations with convicted abusers are incredibly serious and cannot be ignored".

Prince Andrew has faced calls for his Duke of York title to be removed.
Prince Andrew has faced calls for his Duke of York title to be removed.

Cllr Smalley has urged Buckingham Palace and the Government to remove Prince Andrew's Duke of York title.

But removing a royal title is not that simple.

There is no proof that Prince Andrew has done anything wrong. He has always denied the allegations against him, and the out of court settlement with Ms Giuffre did not include any admission of guilt or liability from the Prince.

Only an act of Parliament can strip somebody of a royal title.
Only an act of Parliament can strip somebody of a royal title.

Legally, the Queen does not have the power to strip somebody of a royal title. Only an Act of Parliament can do this.

The last members of the Royal Family to lose their titles was during the First World War when the 1917 Titles Deprivation Act removed royal titles from enemy German princes.

Today, such an Act could seriously damage the royal family's reputation and create an uncomfortable rift with politicians.MPs could be reluctant to overshadow Her Majesty The Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations, commemorating her 70 years of service to the nation.