Andrew’s role as patron at another institution under review

London Metropolitan University is to review the Duke of York’s role as its patron, saying it “opposes all forms of discrimination, abuse and human trafficking”.

Andrew’s position will be considered as part of the agenda at the university’s board of governors meeting next week.

The duke is facing the embarrassing prospect of charities and institutions he is associated with distancing themselves in the wake of his Newsnight interview in which he discussed his friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who took his own life in jail while facing sex
trafficking charges.

Andrew on Newsnight
The Duke of York in an interview with BBC Newsnight’s Emily Maitlis (Mark Harrison/BBC/PA)

KPMG’s sponsorship contract with Andrew’s Pitch@Palace – a mentoring scheme for tech start-ups and entrepreneurs – expired at the end of October and will not be renewed.

The student jury at Huddersfield University, where Andrew is chancellor, has also passed a motion to lobby the duke to resign.

AstraZeneca’s three-year partnership with Pitch@Palace is due to expire at the end of this year and is being reviewed.

Andrew is facing a barrage of criticism, with the royal accused of a lack of empathy with Epstein’s victims and a lack of remorse for his friendship with the disgraced financier.

A spokesman for London Metropolitan University said:  “We will be reviewing the position of Prince Andrew, Duke of York, as our patron at the next board of governors meeting on Tuesday 26th November.

“The university opposes all forms of discrimination, abuse, human trafficking and any activity that is contrary to the university’s values.”

Andrew took over the position from his father the Duke of Edinburgh in 2013.

The patronage of the university extends back to 1848 when Queen Victoria’s consort Prince Albert sponsored an annual exhibition of students work from the then Metropolitan Evening Classes for Young Men.

Lawyers for Epstein’s victims have urged the duke to tell US authorities what he knows.

During the interview, the duke, questioned by Newsnight presenter Emily Maitlis, twice stated his relationship with Epstein had some “seriously beneficial outcomes”, giving him the opportunity to meet people and prepare for a future role as a trade envoy.

The Duke and Duchess
Sarah, Duchess of York and The Duke of York (Adam Davy/PA)

Andrew denied that he slept with Virginia Giuffre, one of Epstein’s victims, on three separate occasions, twice while she was underage, and the alleged encounter in 2001 did not happen as he spent the day with his daughter, Princess Beatrice, taking her to Pizza Express in Woking for a party.

The American said the same alleged sexual liaison began with the duke sweating heavily as they danced at London nightclub Tramp.

But the duke said he had a medical condition at the time which meant he did not sweat.

He said he had no recollection of meeting Ms Giuffre.

Read Full Story

FROM OUR PARTNERS