Sunday, 3 Mar 2024

Andrew ‘fears’ being forced out of his £30m Windsor mansion

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Prince Andrew was facing an uncertain future yesterday as he celebrated his 63rd birthday amid claims he could be forced out of his £30million home. The King is slashing his brother’s annual grant, which is said to be £249,000. It is understood Royal Lodge, on a sprawling 98-acre estate within the grounds of Windsor Castle, requires extensive work on top of high running costs.

The grant is set to be slashed from April and Andrew has told friends it could lead to him effectively being evicted by September after nearly 20 years.

Andrew stopped receiving public funds when he stepped down from royal duties in 2019 following allegations of sexual assault – which he has strenuously denied.

The late Queen stepped in to support him with private funds from the Duchy of Lancaster, which is now overseen by Charles.

But it has been reported that members of the family have been ordered to tighten their belts.

Andrew fears he will be particularly hard hit as his only other income is a pension from the Royal Navy, although he received a substantial inheritance following the deaths of his parents.

Andrew bought the former home of the Queen Mother after she died in 2002, paying £1million on condition that he carried out significant refurbishments – which have already cost millions.

He lives there with his exwife Sarah Ferguson, also 63. Despite his fears, insiders insisted the King – who went to church in Wiltshire yesterday – would continue to support Andrew.

A source said: “He is not going to leave his brother homeless and penniless.”

Another reportedly added: “This is about Charles telling Andrew that he can use his own money to pay for things. The same goes for other members of the family, such as Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie.

“And while there is leniency with working members of the family, who have offices funded by the Sovereign Grant, there have been other examples.”

Prince Edward’s daughter Louise inherited Prince Philip’s carriage “but Charles doesn’t feel like he should pay for the upkeep of the ponies to pull the carriage”.

The Grade II listed mansion, which has a pool and its own driving range for golf-mad Andrew, holds fond memories for the family. Eugenie, 32, held her wedding reception there.

Andrew had previously lived in nearby Sunninghill Park, which was given to him as a wedding present by the Queen. He sold it for £15million to a Kazakh billionaire.

But he has spent millions of pounds reaching a no-fault settlement with sexual assault accuser Virginia Giuffre.

Buckingham Palace did not comment.

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