Having relinquished his military affiliations and royal patronages and agreed not to use the style Royal Highness, Prince Andrew has – through his lawyers – issued 41 denials, rejecting all allegations of wrongdoing in response to Virginia Giuffre’s accusations. They stated a further 40 times that their client ‘lacks sufficient information to admit or deny’ other claims.
This official rebuttal came after a motion to dismiss the case on a legal technicality was denied. ‘Prince Andrew hereby demands a trial by jury on all causes of action asserted in the complaint,’ his legal team has said. The duke’s deposition has to be submitted before the 14 July deadline set by the judge and Giuffre’s lawyer, David Boies; Boies has never met Andrew but will travel to London to do so. He is adamant that for his client, Giuffre, ‘it isn’t about the money’.
‘What’s important for Virginia,’ he says, ‘is to vindicate herself and the other victims. Not to let someone escape responsibility, just because of their wealth and power. To hold Prince Andrew to account. But how that vindication is accomplished is still open.’
None of this makes happy reading, especially for the Queen, but her platinum jubilee celebrations are taking shape and no one wishes to spoil a unique moment in British history.
Without the dukes of York and Sussex other members of the royal family are picking up their lapsed patronages. Soon after passing her 40th birthday milestone the Duchess of Cambridge accepted the patronages of the Rugby Football League and the Rugby Football Union, both of which sit well with her longstanding passion and skill at many sports. Formerly they were with Prince Harry, who had to relinquish them when he moved to the US.
At her debut the duchess joined in a training session with referees, coaches and players at Twickenham Stadium. Catherine had been there several times with Prince William, who is patron of the Welsh Rugby Union. It was not her first public foray into playing rugby, as during a 2017 trip to Paris she displayed her talent at throwing a rugby ball around with young players while wearing a coat dress and high heels.
In Her Majesty’s very personal eve of Accession Day message she humbly thanked everyone for their support over the years and asked for that same support to be given to her son Charles and his wife Camilla when ‘in the fullness of time’ he becomes king. She said she wished that when that time comes Camilla will be known as Queen Consort. This is something the Queen obviously felt strongly needed to be sorted out during her own reign.
In his statement acknowledging the Queen’s anniversary Charles wrote fulsomely: ‘We are deeply conscious of the honour represented by my mother’s wish. As we have sought together to serve and support Her Majesty and the people of our communities, my darling wife has been my own steadfast support throughout.’
He added: ‘The year of this unprecedented platinum jubilee brings an opportunity for us all to come together in celebrating the service of the Queen, by whose example we will continue to be led in the years to come.’