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Palaces & BuildingsThe Yorks

Northern Ireland’s Parliament to no longer fly flag for Prince Andrew’s birthday

Northern Ireland’s Parliament will no longer fly a flag in honour of Prince Andrew’s birthday on 19 February.

The union flag was set to be flown at Stormont next week to mark Andrew’s 62nd birthday. Instead, the flag will be flown on 1 July to mark the Battle of the Somme anniversary. During the World War I battle in 1916, British and French forces launched a frontal attack against an entrenched German army north of the Somme River in France. On the first day of battle, the British army took over 57,000 casualties, marking the bloodiest day in British military history. The same decision on flying the flag in honour of Andrew’s birthday was taken by Belfast City Council earlier this month.

Earlier this year, The Queen removed the Duke of York’s military titles and HRH status following the decision by a US judge to proceed with his sexual assault civil case. In the move, the 61-year-old also lost his patronages.

The Prince is accused by Virginia Giuffre of sexually assaulting her when she was 17-years-old, a claim he has consistently denied. The Duke and his lawyers argue that a 2009 deal she signed with late-financier and convicted sex offender, Jeffrey Epstein, prevented her from taking action against the Prince as she had agreed not to pursue any other “potential defendants.”

A spokesperson from Buckingham Palace said: “With The Queen’s approval and agreement, The Duke of York’s military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to The Queen.

“The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen.”

It is understood other members of the Royal Family will now take on Andrew’s former patronages.

The Duke will now face a civil trial in the US, but it is not expected to take place before this autumn. The Duke has denied the accusations made against him.

About author

My name is Sydney Zatz and I am a University of Iowa graduate. I graduated with a degree in journalism and sports studies, and a minor in sport and recreation management. A highlight of my college career was getting the chance to study abroad in London and experiencing royal history firsthand. I have a passion for royals, royal history, and journalism, which led me to want to write for Royal Central.