Prince Andrew stripped of York title after council meeting

An embattled Prince Andrew has been embarrassingly stripped of yet another royal honor following an extraordinary vote.

Prince Andrew has been stripped of another honor after the city of York agreed to remove his title as Honorary Freeman.

The royal was given the freedom of the city of York in a lavish ceremony in 1987, shortly after his marriage to Sarah Ferguson, but on Thursday, York City Council voted to remove his status as an Honorary Freeman in an extraordinary full council meeting.

The council took just 40 minutes to reach the decision to strip the Queen’s son of the title, The Sun reports.

One speaker described the Duke as an “utter disgrace who brings shame wherever he goes”.

“He needs to be declared persona non grata in York,” they said.

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This fresh humiliation could be the next step in the Palace facing calls for Andrew to give up his Duke of York title and remove all remaining connections to the city.

He is the first VIP to be stripped of his freemanship since BBC presenter Jimmy Savile posthumously had his Freedom of Scarborough removed in 2011, after revelations came to light of his sickening crimes including sexual assault and paedophilia.

York town hall chief Darryl Smalley said: “The removal of this honorary title sends the right message that we as a city stand with victims of abuse.

“The next logical step is now for Prince Andrew to do the right thing and relinquish his Duke of York title.

“If he fails to do so, the Government and Buckingham Palace must step in to remove his title to finally end Prince Andrew’s connection to York.”

It follows calls for Andrew to give up his Duke of York honor in the wake of the sexual assault case brought against him by Virginia Giuffre.

The case was settled out of court in February, with the Prince paying an undisclosed settlement said to be at least $21 million.

MsGiuffre, who now lives in Australia, claimed she was trafficked by paedophile Jeffrey Epstein and forced to have sex with Prince Andrew, a claim he has strongly denied.

Mr Smalley added: “The Honorary Freedom of York is the highest honor we, as a city, can bestow on those who represent the very best of York.

“The honor is held by many notable and accomplished people who carry it with pride and responsibly.

“Having been stripped of his military roles and royal patronages by the Queen, we believe that it is right to remove all links that Prince Andrew still has with our great city.

“I was pleased to see councilors of all parties support this motion and make it clear that it is no longer appropriate for Prince Andrew to represent York and its residents.”

Prince Andrew signed a settlement with Ms Giuffre earlier this year which contained no admission of liability.

It is the latest title that the Duke has lost after the Queen stripped her son of all his military and royal patronages shortly before his legal case came to a sudden end.

Prince Andrew sparked controversy last month when he walked the Queen into Prince Philip’s memorial service in a huge show of support.

He is also earmarked to accompany the Queen to the Derby on Platinum Jubilee weekend.

Insiders said the 62-year-old is set to chaperone his mother to the Epsom race meet in June.

A source said: “He was meant to stay invisible during the Platinum Jubilee so there is no way he will be at events like Trooping the Colour.

“But the Queen needs a chaperone on all occasions at the moment due to her mobility issues and Andrew has earmarked the Derby as the one he will accompany her at.

“He just doesn’t seem to understand the public outcry.”

No longer seen as a ‘person of distinction’

Councilors announced they would try to revoke Andrew’s freedom of the city of York in February, just days after the announcement of his settlement.

The decision was made during a meeting held at York Racecourse on Wednesday evening.

It was a far cry from the public warmth towards him when he received the honour.

More than 200,000 thronged the streets of the ancient city in 1987 for the civic ceremony which saw Andrew granted the Freedom of York.

A crowd gathered outside York Minster sang, “We want Fergie,” after every family in the city was invited to apply for tickets.

The honour, which dates back hundreds of years and recognizes notable service to the city by “persons of distinction”.

Mr Smalley said York’s links to the monarchy were an important part of the city’s “legacy and history”.

But he added: “The allegations and his associations with convicted abusers are incredibly serious and we are determined to explore all options available to ensure that his links to our city are severe.

“We will be reaching out to MPs to raise our concerns and discuss any possible ways of ending Prince Andrew’s connection to York.”

This story originally appeared on The Sun and was reproduced with permission

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