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Councillor writes to Queen asking for Prince Andrew to be stripped of his Earl of Inverness title

Prince Andrew with former RAF Lossiemouth station commander Al Monkman in 2008. Photo: DCT Media
Prince Andrew with former RAF Lossiemouth station commander Al Monkman in 2008. Photo: DCT Media

A Highland councillor has written to the Queen asking her give a commitment Prince Andrew will not use his Scottish title.

Councillor Ron MacWilliam has asked that Prince Andrew’s Earl of Inverness title is no longer used.

The Inverness Ness-side councillor – who also plans to write to the prime minister – said this should be the policy until a “more formal” arrangement can be reached.

Last week, Mr MacWilliam called for Inverness politicians to make their own feelings known about Prince Andrew continuing to holding the title.

Collage of Prince Andrew with Inverness politicians
Prince Andrew is under pressure to give up his Earl of Inverness title.

The majority called for the title to be revoked. Margaret Davidson, leader of Highland Council, said it was a matter for the palace.

‘This is very much a political matter’

In his letter, Mr MacWilliam says that he intends to write formally to both the Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as well as a letter to Drew Hendry MP for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey.

Speaking to The Press and Journal, he said: “This is very much a political matter and it must be resolved as soon as possible.

“I want to impress on the palace and on our MPs that this situation will not be tolerated by the people of Inverness.

“As far as I understand it, the title must be removed by an Act of Parliament.”

Prince Andrew, Duke Of York, heading into Windsor Castle (Photo: Kelvin Bruce/Shutterstock)

‘No desire to burden you further’

In his letter to the Queen, on Highland Council-headed notepaper, Mr MacWilliam, an SNP member, writes: “I have no desire to burden you further on the sensitive matter of recent events concerning your son.”

Mr MacWilliam wrote to her majesty after the prince’s out-of-court settlement in an American court. The settlement was made with a woman who had accused him of sexually assaulting her when she was 17.

He writes: “The steps you have recently taken to protect both institutional and state interests have not extended to protecting the interests of my city.”

The Queen is currently on “light duties” after contracting Covid.

Mr MacWiliam said he understands it is not within the gift of The Queen to revoke the earldom.

He asks her majesty to make an “informal commitment” that the title will not be “used publicly”.

Collage of Ron MacWilliam and Prince Andrew
Councillor Ron MacWilliam wants Prince Andrew to give up his Earl of Inverness title. Photo: Sandy McCook/DCT Media

City must not ‘suffer’

Mr MacWilliam added: “Inverness is a city held in high regard both domestically and internationally.

“[It is known] for such merits as its incredible natural beauty, innovative local economy and as a high-quality visitor destination.

“It is vital to our economic and cultural interests that the reputation of the city remains focused on these valuable assets.

“And that we do not suffer disrepute by association to the current holder of the peerage.”

A similar call has also been made in York, for the duke’s title to be removed from the prince.

A spokeswoman for Buckingham Palace said it was a “political matter”.  And therefore, not appropriate for the palace to comment.

The prime minister previously said the matter of removing titles was one for the palace.

 

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