Minister refuses to confirm if taxpayer will still fund Andrew’s security

Damian Hinds said he could not comment on security matters.

The Duke of York
The Duke of York

A Government minister has refused to confirm whether the Duke of York will still receive taxpayer-funded security after the Queen stripped her son of his honorary military roles and HRH style.

Buckingham Palace said on Thursday that Andrew has had his remaining royal patronages removed.

And a royal source said the duke, who was born an HRH, will no longer use the style in any official capacity.

But security minister Damian Hinds could not confirm whether taxpayers will continue to fund Andrew’s security arrangements.

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The Duke of York has been stripped of his honorary military roles and HRH style (Jonathan Brady/PA)

Speaking on LBC, Mr Hinds said: “Our security forces, the police and others, do what they judge is necessary to protect our country, to protect people in it.”

He said it is a “long-standing – and I think correct – principle that we don’t talk about who and how in particular”.

When pushed, he said: “I know this is going to come across to you possibly, and possibly to some listeners, like me obfuscating and avoiding the question, and I suppose maybe even in some ways it is avoiding the question, but only because it is right to say that the police and our wider security forces do what is right and proportionate to protect the people of this country.

“And we don’t publicise exactly what that covers.”

The question of taxpayer-funded security for non-working royals was last raised when the Duke and Duchess of Sussex stepped down.

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The statement issued by Buckingham Palace saying that the Duke of York’s military affiliations and royal patronages have been returned to the Queen (Buckingham Palace/PA)

When Harry and Meghan made public their decision early last year, their website suggested that the Home Office, through the Metropolitan Police, should continue to provide protection for the couple and their young son, Archie.

But former Home Office minister Norman Baker called at the time for Scotland Yard to cap the annual expenditure on security for the couple to its 2019 level.

The Sussexes later signed multimillion-pound deals with Netflix and Spotify, with the duke telling Oprah Winfrey he had secured them to pay for his security.

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