As part of the Duke’s lease for Royal Lodge, he is responsible for the refurbishment costs of the historic building, which are now understood to be vast.
But since his allowance from the Duchy of Lancaster was cut by the King in his effort to create a value-for-money, “slimmed down” monarchy, Andrew has indicated he can no longer afford the upkeep.
Frogmore Cottage, the former Windsor home of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, has been earmarked by the King as an alternative for Prince Andrew.
The monarch asked the Sussexes to vacate the five-bedroom Georgian cottage around the time that Spare, Prince Harry’s memoir, was published in January, but was understood to have given them until after his coronation, which Harry attended last weekend without his wife.
Meanwhile, questions have been raised about where the Duchess of York – Prince Andrew’s estranged wife – will live if the couple are forced to vacate Royal Lodge.
The couple currently live in separate wings of the Windsor house and it is unlikely they would both live together at the considerably smaller Frogmore Cottage.
It is understood that Buckingham Palace had initially said the Duke and Duchess of York must leave the property by September, but that they now accept such a quick turnaround is unrealistic.
The King is believed to have guaranteed Prince Andrew a reduced income and a home, and is understood to have agreed to pay privately for the Duke’s security, estimated at £3 million a year, after the Home Office axed his Scotland Yard bodyguards.
Royal sources insisted that the monarch would not leave his brother “homeless or penniless”.
The Duke of York is understood to be frustrated that he cannot deal with the issue directly with his brother while negotiations over the Windsor property continue.
A friend of Prince Andrew’s suggested to the Mail on Sunday that face-to-face talks might be more successful in order to reach a compromise.
One told the newspaper: “If Charles wants Andrew to play ball and help the family through these difficult times, aren’t there better ways of going about it?
“Why not do the decent thing, sit down and talk? If they need the house for William, perhaps Andrew should be told,” they added.
Buckingham Palace declined to comment.
The Telegraph, London
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