A wedding, a pregnancy and an outcast. Although it might sound like the premise for a new film, they are in fact the words which accurately sum up the year 2020 for the York Family.
For every citizen of the globe, the start of the new decade certainly hasn’t been straightforward due to the coronavirus pandemic. Perhaps this was, however, a saving grace for the Duke of York, who didn’t have to worry about turning up at engagements. But for every cloud, there is sadness, as the 60-year-old’s favourite restaurant Pizza Express had to temporarily close their doors.
A secret wedding
2020 will be remembered by most families for all of the wrong reasons, but for Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, it was the year they came together in holy matrimony.
Beatrice and her fiancé were due to wed on May 29 in the Chapel Royal at St. James’s Palace, London.
Unfortunately, Covid-19 scuppered their plans at the UK was in the middle of a nationwide lockdown. The law at the time stated that the number of people attending church weddings should be limited to a legal minimum of five – the priest, bride and groom, and two witnesses.
It was expected that as the granddaughter of a monarch, Beatrice would have married in front of around 800 guests in the same fashion as her sister, Princess Eugenie.
Following the announcement of the postponement of the wedding by Buckingham Palace, it wasn’t expected that anything else surrounding Beatrice’s nuptials would be revealed until a new date could be arranged.
However, on 17 July, it was made known that Beatrice and Edoardo had secretly married that morning at the Royal Chapel of All Saints – a church opposite to the residence of the Duke and Duchess of York.
Very few guests attended the wedding due to government guidelines, however, both The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh travelled to the chapel to see their granddaughter marry.
The Duke of York also attended the service alongside Sarah Ferguson, although they were notably absent from any wedding photos.
The Pariah Prince
The Duke of York attended zero official engagements in 2020 and was also absent from all major events including Trooping the Colour and the Cenotaph Remembrance Service.
Certainly, in the case of Trooping, Covid was the reasoning behind the Duke of York’s absence. But be in no doubt, Andrew is now an outcast from The Royal Family and is unlikely to ever recover favour with the British public.
Prince Andrew’s fall from grace was due to his friendship with convinced child sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
Andrew’s fate as Public Enemy No. 1 was sealed in November 2019 during a calamitous interview with BBC Newsnight in which he showed little remorse for continuing his friendship with Epstein, and had little empathy for the disgraced financier’s victims.
Whereas all other members of the Royal Family were seen partaking in various Zoom meetings and virtual engagements, Andrew was nowhere to be seen.
Despite sources saying it is the Duke’s intention to one day return to public duties, is is clear that this is a fanciful prospect.
The remainder of Prince Andrew’s life in the public eye will no doubt be as quiet as the year just gone by.
A new arrival in 2021
In September, it was revealed that Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank are expecting their first child together.
The baby, which will be born in the first part of next year, will be 11th-in-line to the throne.
This will be a ninth great-grandchild for The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, who are also expecting to welcome their tenth great-grandchild in the new year as Zara & Mike Tindall are expecting.
As the baby will be born down the female line of the Royal Family and Mr Brooksbank has no royal status, the child will have no royal title and will be known simply as Master or Miss Brooksbank.