Prince andrew

You’ll want to claw your face off: Scoop reviewed

Scoop is a dramatised account of the events leading up to the BBC’s 2019 Newsnight interview with Prince Andrew. The one he imagined would allow him to put Jeffrey Epstein behind him, but instead put Pizza Express (Woking) on the map, made us want to claw our own faces off with the horror of it, and led to the Queen stripping him of all his royal and military titles. (I think you know you are in trouble with Mummy when this happens.) Although billed as a ‘film’, this isn’t especially cinematic. It’s more like a bonus episode of The Crown but it is phenomenally cast (Rufus Sewell is a revelation)

The Sam McAlister Edition

36 min listen

Sam McAlister is a producer and author of Scoops: The BBC’s Most Shocking Interviews from Prince Andrew to Steven Seagal. When she worked for Newsnight, she was the producer who secured the infamous interview with Prince Andrew, conducted by Emily Maitlis. This interview eventually led to Prince Andrew being suspended from public duties and stepping back from all of his patronages. McAlister is now being portrayed by the actress Billie Piper in a coming Netflix adaptation of the Prince Andrew interview. On the episode, she tells Katy about coming from a ‘grafting, entrepreneurial’ family and how that informed her competitiveness; her brief career in law; and the behind-the-scenes story of how

Prince Andrew will never learn his lesson

As the Princess of Wales draws plaudits for appearing at last night’s BAFTA awards in a subtly reused Alexander McQueen dress, and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex continue to keep the world guessing as to whether they will appear at the Coronation in less than three months, the younger members of the Royal Family are the ones who seem to have momentum behind them. Yet Prince Andrew is not to be outdone – even if the attention that he receives may not always be welcome. Not only was it recently announced that he would – flatteringly – be played by Rufus Sewell in a forthcoming dramatisation of his notorious

In defence of Fergie

My first reaction to anyone buying even a bog standard two-up-two-down terrace in London is a fake congratulations through gritted teeth. So when it was reported last week that the Duchess of York, ex-wife of disgraced Prince Andrew, had bought a £5 million mews house in Mayfair, I was surprised that I didn’t share the outrage of the general public. Sure, she does very little, spending her days lounging around in Royal Lodge, the Grade II-listed Windsor property she shares with her ex. But there’s a part of Sarah Ferguson that is totally relatable, and as she has tried – and often failed – to navigate the inner workings of the

The Prince Andrew conundrum

Prince Philip’s memorial service yesterday was an affecting occasion. The hymns, including Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer and Britten’s Te Deum In C were well chosen, and the Dean of Windsor’s well-judged sermon acknowledged both the Duke of Edinburgh’s sincere but never pious religious faith and his energetic, at times abrasive personality. The Dean suggested, rightly, that the Duke would never have wanted to be remembered as a plaster saint. After the low-key Covid-necessitated funeral service of last year, it was a public reminder that the royal family can still command both dignity and respect. So why, then, have today’s headlines been so dreadful? She was acting as a

Will Prince Andrew fuel a republican boom?

So that’s that then. After years of claims and counter-claims, Prince Andrew has settled with Virginia Giuffre for an eight-figure sum thought to be in the region of £12 million. This, for a woman he said he had never met. Hmm.  The humiliation for the disgraced royal isn’t over yet though: self-promoting Corbynista Rachel Maskell, the MP for York Central, has been quick today to demand his title as Duke of York be removed to avoid offence to the good people of God’s own county. And it seems that Labour backbenchers aren’t the only critics to whom Andrew is giving succour. For pressure group Republic, which campaigns for the abolition

Prince Andrew settles. What next?

In some ways, the news is a disappointment. Prince Andrew’s decision to settle the civil case filed against him by Virginia Giuffre has likely deprived the public of weeks of damaging revelations. After much lawyer-led bravado about how the Duke of York was going to fight the scandalous and defamatory claims against him, he has now decided not to. This can only be seen as a terminal blow to what little remains of his public reputation. The statement released by the lawyers suggests that Giuffre will be receiving an undisclosed financial settlement and that Prince Andrew will be making ‘a substantial donation to Ms Giuffre’s charity in support of victim’s

Prince Andrew’s royal excommunication is complete

Prince Andrew has been well and truly cut adrift. By his only family. From birth, he was styled His Royal Highness. He will go to his grave unencumbered by it. The removal of the style HRH, at the age of 61, will hurt a son of the Queen who doesn’t wear his royal status lightly. He remains a prince and a duke, but the Falklands veteran has no military titles. The uniform of an admiral he’d asked a tailor to run up will now remain in a wardrobe. Unworn in public. His patronages are gone too. Henceforth, he’s Prince Andrew, Duke of York: the non-royal, royal This is what a

Charles Moore

My new nickname for Putin

According to the new Chief of the Defence Staff, Admiral Sir Tony Radakin, the Russians wish to ‘put at risk and potentially exploit the world’s real information system, which is undersea cables that go all around the world’. Apparently, these carry 99 per cent of international communications. The cables which serve Britain are in the Atlantic, where Russian submarines are increasingly probing. This revelation resembles the plot of a book I loved as a child, The Pirates in the Deep Green Sea, by Eric Linklater, published in 1959. Timothy and Hew are two boys living, temporarily without their parents, on Popinsay, a Scottish island. Through the good offices of Gunner

Prince Andrew has no good options

It’s not a good look, aged 61, to be hiding behind your mother. The ninth in line to the throne joined the Queen at Balmoral, making it difficult for papers to be served in the Virginia Giuffre civil case. The Aberdeenshire estate may cover 50,000 acres, but it hasn’t provided refuge — a state of being that has eluded Andrew for the past six years. The Queen’s favourite son (and one of her blind spots) has a damaged reputation that continues to be pummelled remorselessly. It’s a process that has produced — on his part — one flawed strategy after another, from the disastrous Newsnight interview to trying to prove

The failed royal response to Prince Andrew’s Epstein scandal

The royals are dab hands at navigating crises. They’ve had no choice but to develop the necessary skills. Their armoury of responses include hunkering down, ensuring the stiff upper lip doesn’t quiver and – when all else has failed – taking firm, corrective action. In the past, this rule book has served them well, as they’ve weathered, survived, and thrived during the many decades of the Queen’s reign. The Epstein crisis – inflicted on them by the actions of a Prince who was once referred to by a senior diplomat as ‘His Buffoon Highness’ – is not responding to the normal Windsor treatment. For more than a decade, Prince Andrew

The royal redemption of Prince Andrew

Seventeen months is clearly long enough, as far as Prince Andrew is concerned, to spend in the royal wilderness. While mourning the passing of his father, he’s made tentative steps to reclaim his position as one of the public faces of the House of Windsor. His private status, close to his mother, has never been under threat. His first act, on this path to redemption, was an audacious one. He gave a television interview. Emily Maitlis was nowhere in sight and it passed off without incident. Indeed, it generated positive headlines with his account of how the Queen had described the death of her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh as