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Andrew plans to tell all
Prince Andrew is talking to American authors about getting some help to write his autobiography, with sources telling the Mail on Sunday to expect “Spare 2.0”—a reference to Prince Harry’s dish-filled tell-all. Andrew apparently wants to “set the record straight” after the fallout of his association with pedophile Jeffrey Epstein left him with no public royal role and an appalling reputation.
Two weeks ago we reported that Andrew was considering writing a memoir, with a source telling us: “It’s being talked about regularly. Sarah (Ferguson, his ex-wife) has had real success with her books and has great publishing contacts. Harry’s book has proved that there is no shortage of appetite for stories about the royal family. Why shouldn’t Andrew tell his side of the story now his mother is gone?”
Last year, Andrew paid Virginia Roberts Giuffre millions of dollars in an out-of-court agreement; Giuffre claims Andrew sexually assaulted her three times when she was underage and being sexually trafficked by Epstein. Andrew emphatically denied the claims, and any memoir will surely include his side of the story (lawyers, prepare yourselves), although one would also think King Charles would want Andrew to bring no more shame and embarrassment to his own door, and to that of the Palace more generally. For Andrew, the calculation may be much more brutal: he has nothing left to lose.
A source said: “Andrew was the original spare and there’s plenty of material. Compared to Harry, he has a far greater depth of history to draw from. Writing a book would give him the opportunity to fully explain his association with Jeffrey Epstein and the resulting fall-out. But it would also be a fascinating insight into the inner workings of the Royals and their relationships.”
“Everyone close to him is telling him it’s a stupid idea and he should just forget it.”
— Royal insider
There’s another sentence likely to strike fear into Charles’ heart, after Harry’s relentless dirty royal laundry washing-and-airing in Spare.
Indeed one insider told the Sun on Sunday: “Everyone close to him is telling him it’s a stupid idea and he should just forget it.”
Biographer Daphne Barak is one name rumored to be attached to the project, although the paper say says she is working on another royal-related book. Two “leading publishers” are said to be interested—good news for Andrew as another motivation is allegedly money. He has told friends he received no inheritance when his mother, Queen Elizabeth died, and who may have to quit his Royal Lodge home unless he can stump up the cash for much-needed repairs.
A source told the Mail on Sunday: “Andrew needs to find ways of making money and supporting himself. It would be a huge wrench to leave Royal Lodge. But mainly he wants to set the record straight. If he doesn’t change the narrative, no one else will.”
Expect more royal Monopoly
King Charles’ recent moves in the big game of royal Monopoly—chucking Harry and Meghan out of Frogmore Cottage while also looking to give Andrew the boot from palatial property Royal Lodge—are “just the start” of economies he will inflict on his family as part of a five-year modernization plan, with aides briefing: “The King is not some sort of housing association for distant relatives.”
The remarks were made to Charles’ biographer Robert Jobson, writing for the Evening Standard.
Jobson reports that Vice-Admiral Sir Tony Johnstone-Burt, Master of the Household, and the Keeper of the Privy Purse Sir Michael Stevens, who holds the royal purse strings, will be in charge of delivering the changes—while Queen Camilla is “overseeing the fine detail,” Jobson says.
A particular target of the new cutbacks is said to be members of the extended royal family getting subsidized palace accommodation, and then allowing the apartments to be used by their children as “London pads.”
The source said: “Over time, that is going to change. Properties will be let at commercial rates going forward and to people outside the family. Where it is in a palace environment they will of course be security vetted…A lot of practices that have evolved during the last reign will be changing. The king is not heartless or reckless, but if the family members are not part of the core family and not working for the crown, it is fair for them to house themselves and fund themselves.”
It is not just family who may find themselves out on their ear. Angela Kelly, the late queen’s dresser, is one of those facing the boot, as we report below.
Queen’s dresser fears losing home
Angela Kelly, the late queen’s confidante, dresser, and gatekeeper, fears losing her grace-and-favor home, the Mail on Sunday reports. Kelly thought she had the home, within the Windsor estate, for life, but the paper said sources believed Kelly had to vacate her home “within weeks.”
A source told the paper: “She’s been told she will soon have to move out. It’s a nice little place on the Windsor Estate and it was convenient for seeing her grandson, who was at college nearby. But the King has made it clear that under the new reign people will have to cut their cloth. The King is clearly not in the habit of providing homes for those no longer working for the monarchy.”
A Palace insider told the paper the “writing was on the wall” for Kelly after the queen’s death. “Within days, the locks had been changed on all the cupboards to which she held keys.” However, the paper says, having written two books about her unique position (with the queen’s permission), Kelly’s publishing deal includes writing a third—and who know what she might tell, especially if she feels aggrieved.
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Plus ça change
As The Daily Beast has been reporting this week, King Charles’ first state visit, to France, was cancelled after violent riots broke out across the country in response to French moves to raise the pension age from 62 to 64. Charles had been due to visit to Germany after France, and this engagement has remained in place, with the king arriving in Berlin on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, palace insiders have been briefing the Sunday Times that face time with the British monarch is still a hot ticket, with one source close to the king saying: “World leaders really want to come and meet him. The transition has provoked enormous fascination, on a human and geopolitical level, people want to come and hear from him. There will be a lot of world leaders at his coronation.”
King Charles will get an early night the day before his coronation, with a self-imposed 6pm curfew. “He doesn’t want to do anything in the evening in case it tires him out. There will be no partying,” a source told the Telegraph. Unlike his mother, who had a massive banquet on the eve of her big day, Charles has reportedly set himself a 6 p.m. curfew on the night before the coronation. Well, he is 74—and she was 26.
Henri Paul’s friends and family defend Diana’s chauffeur
The best friend of Henri Paul, the chauffeur who was blamed for the car crash which killed both him and Princess Diana, has said he still does not believe his friend was drunk on the night of the accident.
Businessman Claude Garrec was speaking to MailOnline to defend his former best man after it emerged Netflix has created a mocked-up version of Diana’s post crash Mercedes as a prop for the new series of the show, filming now.
Garrec said: “We were very close. We’d meet up three or four times a week. Whatever anyone says, I know he was not responsible for the crash. I am willing to admit that Henri had a reputation as a bon vivant, but he was someone responsible. I can’t see him getting drunk all evening and then driving. If he took the wheel it was because he knew he could take it, he would not have endangered the lives of others…Henri was made the scapegoat.”
Henri Paul’s brother, Alain, said: “I don’t want to have to see the wreckage of a car that my brother died in over and over again. It’s inhumane. Yet again people are trying to profit from the death of my brother and of Princess Diana. I don’t know how they can call this entertainment. For them it is simply business. And as it’s only business for them they should send me a cheque. But they won’t. They didn’t even have the decency to inform me about it.”
This week in royal history
Today, eight years ago, some long overdue royal progress: the Succession to the Crown Act (2013) became law, establishing gender-blind succession.
Is Andrew really writing a tell-all memoir, or using the threat of it as a useful bargaining chip as his brother King Charles considers evicting him from Royal Lodge, or indeed play any future royal role?
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