City of York Councillors are set to vote on a motion presented at an Extraordinary Full Council meeting to remove Prince Andrew’s Honorary Freedom of the City of York.
The honorary freedom is bestowed by the city to recognise notable service by local residents, to distinguished people; and to Royalty. Prince Andrew was presented with the honorary title on 23 February 1987 by the then-serving councillors.
Previous recipients of the honour include the Duke of Wellington, Sir Winston Churchill, John Barry, Dame Judi Dench, Dame Janet Baker, Professor Sir Ron Cooke, Dr Peter Addyman and Dr Richard Shephard.
This follows the calls made for Prince Andrew to relinquish his Duke of York honour in the wake of the sexual assault case brought against him, which has now been settled out of court.
Prince Andrew has been contacted in advance of the meeting to inform him of councillors intention to seek to remove the honorary freedom
Councillor Darryl Smalley, City of York Council’s Executive Member for Culture, Leisure & Communities, who will be proposing the motion, commented:
“The Honorary Freedom of York is the highest honour we, as a city, can bestow on those we feel have given notable service. We feel that is no longer appropriate for Prince Andrew to hold this ambassadorial title that is intrinsically linked to our city.
“Having been stripped of his military roles and royal patronages by the Queen, we will be seeking to remove this link that Prince Andrew still has with our great city.
“York’s unique connection to the Crown and the Monarch is and will remain an important part of our city's legacy and history. However, the allegations levelled at Prince Andrew as well as his associations with convicted abusers are incredibly serious and cannot be ignored. As a Council and city, we stand with victims of sexual abuse and are working to end violence against woman and girls.
“I hope councillors across all parties will support the motion. The next logical step will then be for Buckingham Palace and the Government to act to remove his Duke of York title to finally end Prince Andrew’s connection to York.”