Prince Andrew ‘is plotting a Profumo-style comeback’: Friends insist the Duke of York could reinvent himself like the disgraced Tory minister who quit over 1960s Christine Keeler scandal
- Friends insist the Duke of York is plotting a John Profumo-styled comeback
- Prince Andrew still holding out hope of living a life ‘of public service’, they say
- Mr Profumo was ex-Tory war minister, whose affair saw his public life crumble
- Clawed his way back into favour and later redeemed himself with charity work
Friends of Prince Andrew said yesterday that he still believes he can live a life of ‘public service’ and could even try to reinvent himself ‘Profumo-style’ once his legal woes are concluded.
Insiders say the Queen’s son could model himself on John Profumo, the Tory former war minister, whose affair with Christine Keeler in the 1960s led to his resignation from Harold Macmillan’s government, although he was later able to redeem himself.
‘The duke still feels he can make a positive contribution in some way,’ a friend told the Daily Mail.
Although the duke will focus on ‘clearing his name’ for the foreseeable future, the source said charity work was ‘something he would like to be able to return to. He worked hard for many dozens of charitable organisations as a member of the Royal Family and believes he has many productive years ahead of him’.
A number of those charities deserted the duke after he stepped back from public life in 2019 and his remaining patronages were taken away this week.
Friends of Prince Andrew said yesterday that he still believes he can live a life of ‘public service’ and could even try to reinvent himself ‘Profumo-style’ once his legal woes are concluded
Insiders say the Queen’s son could model himself on John Profumo (pictured in Toynbee Hall, London in 1975) the Tory former war minister, whose affair with Christine Keeler in the 1960s led to his resignation from Harold Macmillan’s government, although he was later able to redeem himself
But the source added: ‘There are, hopefully, other ways he can continue to serve, in time.’
Profumo initially denied his affair with Miss Keeler, a 19-year-old showgirl and model, in a statement to the Commons in 1963, but weeks later a police investigation proved he had lied, damaging the Macmillan government’s credibility.
Public interest increased following reports that Keeler was also involved with Captain Yevgeny Ivanov, a Soviet naval attaché, creating a possible national security risk at the height of the Cold War.
Profumo remained silent about the scandal and devoted the rest of his life to charity work.
Buckingham Palace said in a statement: ‘With The Queen’s approval and agreement, The Duke of York’s military affiliations and Royal patronages have been returned to The Queen’
In a brutal two-line statement Buckingham Palace also forced Andrew to drop his HRH title and dashed his hopes of resuming public duties
He started washing dishes at Toynbee Hall, an east London charitable trust, before going on to become the charity’s chairman and, eventually, president.
His work with Toynbee Hall, which helps people facing poverty and injustice, helped to restore his reputation and he was given a CBE in 1975.
He died with his honour restored – having rubbed shoulders once again with the Queen – in 2006.