Prince Andrew enjoys a horse ride in Windsor – after it emerged the Duke was considering life in US
Prince Andrew has been spotted out on a horse ride in Windsor amid rumours the sidelined royal is eyeing a move stateside.
According to insiders the Duke of York, 62, has been watching Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s progress across the US ‘very closely’.
The second son of the late Queen was spotted riding a horse on Saturday before going for a drive around Windsor.
The 62-year-old was stripped of his royal titles and roles last year but insiders claim he is ‘less bothered’ about the situation than people believe.
A source close to Andrew told The Sun that he has been following the Sussexes’ journey as he considers ways to ‘forge a new career.’
But the disgraced prince is understood to be plotting a comeback that will restore his tarnished reputation, including legal action against his sex abuse accuser Virginia Giuffre.
The Duke was spotted riding in Windsor on Saturday as friends say he is ‘less bothered’ about the loss of his roles than the public might think
Prince Andrew was then seen going for a drive around the historic market town as he weighs up a move stateside
Andrew is seemingly impressed at how Harry and Meghan were able to ‘set up a new working life away from the Royal Family’ in California, friends told The Sun.
The insider claimed he is ‘very interested’ in ‘business and charity’ but unlike his nephew, would be shying away from Netflix-style projects.
The royal is also reportedly reassembling a team of his own. He is understood to have recently lost his communications officer of two years.
MailOnline has approached Andrew’s representatives for comment.
Andrew was forced to step back from Royal duties in November 2019 over alleged sex abuse, but has always strongly denied the claims, made in a US civil court case.
The Mail on Sunday reported last month that he is now considering trying to overturn a multi-million-pound settlement he made with Ms Giuffre.
The furore surrounding the case led to him being stripped of his honorary military titles and any return to public life seems improbable.
Discussions are taking place behind the scenes about what role – if any – Andrew might perform during the King’s Coronation.
Andrew was forced to step back from Royal duties in November 2019 over alleged sex abuse and is unlikely to play a formal role in the upcoming coronation as rumours dog his reputation
The Duke of York paid an estimated £12million settlement to Ms Giuffre after she made claims he had sex with her when she was 17
A source closed to Andrew claims he has been following Harry and Meghan’s (pictured in 2017) journey ‘very, very closely’ as he considers ways to ‘forge a new career’
King Charles is said to feel it would not be appropriate to include him in an official position.
Andrew is still a Knight of the Garter, the ancient order of chivalry dating back to 1348, and, traditionally, Garter Knights have performed significant roles during Coronation ceremonies.
Despite remaining a Garter Knight, Andrew was banned from last year’s annual public procession.
Instead, he joined other Garter Knights for the private part of the day.
Meanwhile, Andrew’s alleged bid to pursue a life in America follows reports that his lawyers are making moves to disclose legal documents involving Ms Giuffre in the hope that it will ‘demolish’ her story and restore his reputation.
The Duke of York paid an estimated £12million settlement to Ms Giuffre after she made claims he had sex with her when she was 17, which he has denies.
Prince Andrew with his arm around the then-17-year-old Virginia Roberts (now known by her married name Giuffre)
Andrew paid Virginia Giuffre (pictured in November 2022) a reported £12million out-of-court settlement last year to get her to drop the civil claim in the US
Prince Andrew (pictured in 2019) has been ‘keeping an eye’ on Harry and Meghan’s life in the US as he plots a comeback to public life, it has been reported
His legal team have sought access to papers from a lawsuit between Ms Giuffre, 39, and US lawyer Alan Dershowitz, whom she formerly accused of abuse but later admitted she’d made a mistake, The Sunday Times reported.
The prince was stripped of all royal duties and his military titles in the fallout from his 2019 BBC Newsnight interview, in which he was unrepentant about his friendships with Ghislaine Maxwell and convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
A film is being made of the bombshell interview, with presenter Emily Maitlis due to be played by Gillian Anderson, while Rufus Sewell will take on the mantle of playing the Prince.
Scoop is also set to feature Keeley Hawes as Prince Andrew’s then private secretary and Billy Piper as the trained-criminal-barrister-turned-producer Sam McAlister, who set up the extraordinary interview.
He has insisted Ms Giuffre’s claim of a sexual encounter in 2001 ‘didn’t happen’, and questioned the validity of a photograph of them both taken at Maxwell’s Mews house.
Royal analysts believe he was left a substantial inheritance by the Queen and this has provided him with the security — should he wish — to mount the legal challenge against Ms Giuffre.
Others suspect Andrew, who was recently branded one of the most unpopular royals, may pen a memoir to try and clear his name after having consistently denied Ms Giuffre’s allegations.
The Duke also recently claimed to friends that a ‘mystery development’ will restore his disgraced reputation within the coming months.