Prince Andrew resigns as patron of the Outward Bound Trust

The prince announced he was stepping back from his duties amid the fallout of his Newsnight interview

Prince Andrew (Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP via Getty Image)
Prince Andrew (Lillian Suwanrumpha/AFP via Getty Image)

Prince Andrew has today resigned from his role at the Outward Bound Trust in the wake of his interview with the BBC’s Newsnight programme, as more charities consider their relationship with the prince.

The trust, which takes young people into the wilderness on adventure and learning trips, issued a statement this afternoon after a board meeting called to discuss the prince's role as patron.

It said in a statement afterwards: "The board has today accepted the resignation as patron of HRH the Duke of York following his announcement yesterday that he will be withdrawing from public duties for the foreseeable future.

"The board thanks HRH the Duke of York for his support over many years."

The trust became the second charity today to accept the prince's resignation.

The University of Huddersfield Students' Union, a charity that represents students, earlier issued a statement saying it had received confirmation that the prince had stepped down as university chancellor with immediate effect.

The union had begun discussions with the vice-chancellor of the university to lobby the prince to resign.

"We know that students will welcome this decision," the union said in a statement.

In a statement made yesterday, the prince said the Queen had given him permission to "step back from public duties for the foreseeable future" after the Newsnight interview in which he discussed his friendship with the convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Epstein committed suicide earlier this year while in prison awaiting trial in the US on sex-trafficking charges.

Prince Andrew’s statement said: "It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein has become a major disruption to my family’s work and the valuable work going on in the many organisations and charities that I am proud to support."

A spokeswoman for the royal household said that, although the prince would not be undertaking any public duties on behalf of charities, he did not intend to resign his roles.

According to the royal household website, Prince Andrew is involved with 198 charities, many of which are small organisations, including numerous golf clubs.

The list, however, is out of date: for instance, it still describes the prince as a patron of the NSPCC and an honorary member of the Friends of Imperial War Museum, roles he relinquished in 2009 and 2017 respectively.

Many charities that are listed on the website as having the prince as a patron were reluctant to discuss the matter when contacted today by Third Sector.

The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra issued a statement saying: "A press statement from our organisation will be forthcoming. We have no further comment at this time."

A spokeswoman for Action on Hearing Loss said: "We still don’t have any comment right now."

The Royal Free Charity, which supports the work of London's Royal Free Hospital, said: "Please contact the royal family media centre for queries on this matter."

The NSPCC declined to say whether it planned to contact the royal household asking it to remove any reference to the prince's former role with the charity from its website.

The royal household has said the prince will continue to be involved with Pitch@Palace, his charitable initiative to help entrepreneurs.

According to media reports, Pitch@Palace has lost the support of some private companies in recent days, but the organisation did not respond to inquiries from Third Sector.

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