The Duke of York was at one stage second in line to the throne behind brother Prince Charles until the birth of Prince Harry and Prince William. According to one courtier, Prince Andrew grew up with “a pompous level of self-importance based on being second in line to the throne. “Of course, the arrival of his nephews William and Harry pushed him down the succession, and he felt it.” The Daily Mail highlighted in their 2016 report that the Queen “has always tried to help him in this respect, by making sure he has a ‘role’, not always, it must be said, with success”.
The report said that Prince Andrew upset locals in Lockerbie when he went there in the aftermath of a plane crash in 1988.
The Queen decided she should not go, and sent her son instead.
But when he said that the tragedy was “much worse for the Americans” and added that it had been “only a matter of time” before a plane fell out of the sky, the people of Lockerbie were not impressed.
The Queen later told Fellowes: “I was wrong [about Lockerbie] — I wish I had gone.”
Whether she had Andrew’s faux pas in mind is unknown.
Prince Andrew was also criticised in his role as trade envoy for the UK.
The Duke of York served as the UK’s special representative for trade and investment for 10 years – a spell that ended in July 2011 as his suitability for the job came under question.
He came under fire for his style of diplomacy in the role, which he held for 10 years.
As The Guardian reported, this was apparent in 2010 after a US Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan hit out at the prominent royal’s conduct while meeting in the country’s capital of Bishkek.
The two-hour engagement, which happened in 2008, reportedly saw Andrew attack Britain’s corruption investigators in the Serious Fraud Office for what he called “idiocy”.
He is also said to have launched a tirade against journalists and the French during an “astonishingly candid” performance at an official engagement that shocked a US diplomat.
Tatiana Gfoeller, Washington’s ambassador to Kyrgyzstan at the time, recorded in a secret cable that Andrew spoke “cockily” at the brunch with British and Canadian business people, leading a discussion that “verged on the rude”.
Prince Andrew also denounced reports by the Guardian investigating bribery as “journalists who poke their noses everywhere”.
In the cable from the US embassy to Washington in October 2008, Ms Gfoeller wrote: “Rude language à la British … [Andrew] turned to the general issue of promoting British economic interests abroad.
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“He railed at British anti corruption investigators, who had had the ‘idiocy’ of almost scuttling the al-Yamamah deal with Saudi Arabia.”
She added that the Duke of York “was referencing an investigation, subsequently closed, into alleged kickbacks a senior Saudi royal had received in exchange for the multi-year, lucrative BAE Systems contract to provide equipment and training to Saudi security forces”.
Her dispatch added: “His mother’s subjects seated around the table roared their approval.
“He then went on to ‘these (expletive) journalists, especially from the National [sic] Guardian, who poke their noses everywhere’ and (presumably) make it harder for British businessmen to do business. The crowd practically clapped.”
Another reason Prince Andrew’s suitability for the role came under scrutiny was his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein.
Epstein was due to stand trial for sex trafficking last year before he killed himself in prison.
The Duke of York has also been accused of having sex with alleged trafficking victim Virginia Roberts Giuffre on three separate occasions.
Buckingham Palace and Prince Andrew have vehemently denied these allegations, and said they were “false and without foundation”.
US prosecutors have claimed Prince Andrew has not cooperated with their requests for an interview. The Duke’s lawyers have disputed those claims