- Prince Andrew shares the £30million mansion with just his ex-wife Sarah
The Duke of York is refusing to leave his home during building works for fear he ‘might never get back in’.
It comes amid a stand-off between himself and his brother King Charles, who is keen for Prince Andrew to quit his long-term Windsor home Royal Lodge in plans to scale down the monarchy.
The royal, who no longer has official duties after being forced to quit over the Jeffrey Epstein scandal, shares the 30-room, £30million mansion with just his ex-wife Sarah, Duchess of York.
The King believes the property could be better re-purposed but Andrew, who took over the house from the late Queen Mother on a long-term lease and has ploughed up to £7million of his own fortune into renovations, is refusing to budge.
The Mail understands some necessary works are being carried out later this summer which will include roof repairs paid for by Andrew himself.
Royal Lodge has seven bedrooms across the two uppermost floors. It would make sense, sources say, for the prince to temporarily move to nearby Frogmore Cottage – Harry and Meghan’s former home which the King has suggested Andrew could permanently ‘downsize’ to.
But the source also claims that Andrew – rightly or wrongly – fears he could be permanently evicted if he were to leave the property, even temporarily. ‘It’s become farcical,’ they said. ‘Andrew has roof repairs scheduled later this summer which will take several months to complete and has been advised that staying in the house during those renovations could prove problematic. But he is reluctant to leave.’
Buckingham Palace declined to comment, however another source insisted there was no need for the Duke of York to move out.
The Mail understands that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, now based in California, still hold the tenancy of Frogmore, which runs out in July.
It was confirmed earlier this year that they have also been given notice to quit their Windsor home, given to them by the late Queen.
Princess Eugenie is currently living in the comfortable five-bedroom home with her husband and two children. She gave birth to her second son last week and the arrangement allows her to be close to her parents and ensure Frogmore remains occupied.
Another source added that despite the dramas surround Royal Lodge and the costs needed to repair it, the Duke of York is adamant that he will remain in his home and not become Frogmore’s new resident.
‘They originally wanted Andrew out of Royal Lodge so that the property could be renovated and prepared for new lodgers,’ the source said.
‘But he is adamant that, as he has so many years left to run on his lease and he spent millions from his own fortune doing up the place that he is not going to leave his home. He feels very strongly, perhaps with some justification, that they are moving the goalposts suddenly and it is hugely unfair.
‘No one knows how it will be resolved but Andrew is insistent. It was clearly convenient for Harry and Meghan to leave Frogmore as they were paying for a property they don’t really use. But Royal Lodge is the Andrew’s home.’
It has long been rumoured that the Prince and Princess of Wales, who are currently living in four-bedroom Adelaide Cottage in Windsor with their three children, might move in.
But it is believed that the Crown Estate wouldn’t rule out renting the Royal Lodge commercially either in order to get the best return.
It has been rumoured that the Prince and Princess of Wales, who live in Adelaide Cottage, Windsor, with their children, may move in. But it is thought the Crown Estate wouldn’t rule out renting out the Royal Lodge commercially.
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