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The Queen

The Queen arrives at engagement in London just minutes after her son retires from public life

Picture by Stephen Lock / i-Images

The Queen has arrived at Chatham House in London for an engagement just a few minutes after her second son, the Duke of York, announced that he is stepping back from public life.

According to royal correspondent Emily Nash, Her Majesty was back on duty just 18 minutes after Prince Andrew released his unprecedented statement.

Her Majesty is conducting this engagement to present the Chatham House Prize to Sir David Attenborough and Dr Julian Hector, the head of the BBC’s Natural History Unit.

Sir David and the BBC are receiving the award in recognition of the “the galvanising impact of the Blue Planet II series on tackling ocean plastic pollution.”

Shortly before leaving Buckingham Palace to attend this engagement, The Queen gave permission for the Duke of York to step down as a working royal “for the foreseeable future.”

Prince Andrew has been forced to step down following the heavy criticism he has received over an interview he granted to BBC Newsnight.

Prince Andrew’s statement in full:

“It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein has become a major disruption to my family’s work and the valuable work going on in the many organisations and charities that I am proud to support.

“Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I may step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission.

“I continue to unequivocally regret my ill-judged association with Jeffrey Epstein. His suicide has left many unanswered questions, particularly for his victims, and I deeply sympathise with everyone who has been affected and wants some form of closure. I can only hope that, in time, they will be able to rebuild their lives. Of course, I am willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required.”