The decision that Prince Andrew should be removed from his public duties would have been a discussion across three generations of the royal family, including Prince William, according to royal experts.
Andrew has been forced to pull back from his royal duties, and has also been axed as royal patron by a number of charities following allegations he slept with a teenage girl trafficked by Jeffrey Epstein.
Virginia Giuffre claims she was forced to sleep with Andrew when she was a teenager, which he categorically denies.
A Nato summit hosted by the Queen at Buckingham Palace in early December was the first high-profile royal event where Andrew was persona non grata.
Discussing who would have been behind the decision to remove Andrew from public duties on Yahoo UK’s Royal Special, royal commentator Omid Scobie said: “It would have been a discussion across all three generations” – the Queen, Prince Charles and William.
Former Daily Mirror royal editor Victoria Murphy agreed, saying something “that big” wouldn’t involve just one member of the Royal Family – it would be a “committee decision”.
While the Queen has dealt with most situations, this one in particular would probably have left her struggling to know what to do, said The Sun’s former royal editor Duncan Larcombe.
“What we’ve found with this particular story unfolding is the fact that we always talk as royal correspondents, or ex-correspondents, about the Queen knowing everything, having seen everything before,” he said.
Citing the fact that she had dealt with everyone from Winston Churchill to John F Kennedy, he said: “All that experience, all that wisdom, it’s very difficult to try and guide Her Majesty because literally she has spent her life doing this.
“But I think in this case, she would have sat there and thought, ‘oh my goodness me, what do we do here?’ And that probably speaks volumes more than anything about just how serious a position Prince Andrew’s managed to land the entire Royal Family in.”
Scobie, who is royal editor at large for Harper’s Bazaar, said the decision to remove Andrew from public duties also meant more work for other members of the Royal Family.
He said: “I think it’s a difficult time for the Queen because I think she’s already been passing work down to the other generations and relying on members of the Royal Family almost to pick up what she’s stepping away from.
“And so to have one member of the Royal Family basically losing 130-something royal charity patronages puts a lot of pressure on the other members of the Royal Family to pick [them] up and do more work.”