I’m not sure temporary this early retirement of Prince Andrew is.
He’s been allowed to present his standing down from royal duties as temporary, but I’d say the chances of him coming back from this one are pretty slim. I’m not sure we’ll ever see Andrew doing royal duty again.
The key here is Charles’ involvement. The word is that Charles is behind this decision. He’s of course here in New Zealand at the moment but he’s been on the phone to the Queen and between the two of them, they decided it was time to act.
And obviously you can put that down to just too many days of bad publicity. Too many charities and businesses and organisations cutting ties with Andrew, and then there is the fact that this scandal started becoming political.
It’s of course election time in the UK. There was a TV debate yesterday morning our time, and both Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn were asked about it, and that is a no no.
The monarchy is not supposed to draw any attention during UK elections and the fact that they were meant the senior royals had to act.
So Charles and the Queen were, in a way, forced to draw a line under this. It was the right thing to because this is the biggest PR disaster the royals have faced since Diana’s death.
But what happens when it blows over? When all the headlines die down, does Andrew come back?
Well, he might have a reasonable case. The American authorities look into his links with Epstein and cleared him, but that only saves him legally. It doesn’t save him from the fact that he’s now perceived as arrogant, selfish, and entitled.
And even if he can restore his reputation, there might not be a place for him by the time he does that.
Charles has made it quite clear he wants to do a Sweden on the royal family. He wants to trim the numbers right back, just like the royal family in Sweden have done.
And if you look at who appeared at the Queen’s jubilee celebrations back in 2012, when you would’ve expected the entire family to be there, it was actually just a few: The Queen and Philip, then Charles and Camilla, and then the next generation - William, Kate and Harry.
That is clearly what Charles wants. He wants to avoid the public getting grumpy at paying for too many hangers on. And Andrew has just given him an excuse, and a really good reason, to do a Sweden.
So, chances Andrew will get his job back? At this stage, very low.