Prince Andrew Likely to Make His Return at Big Royal Event Next Week

The Duke of York was notably absent at the recent Trooping the Colour — but he is poised to be back in a public way

Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee then and now
Prince Andrew with his daughters Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie . Photo: Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty

Prince Andrew is set for a public comeback of sorts.

The controversial royal, 62, is likely to attend the Order of the Garter ceremony on Monday, one of the key events in the annual royal calendar. As a knight in the order — the oldest order of chivalry in the world — he will join most of the rest of the royal family at Windsor, those close to him confirm to PEOPLE.

The event could see him walking with fellow knights — including his older brother Prince Charles and nephew Prince William — and former British Prime Ministers down the hill from Windsor Castle to the annual service at St. George's Chapel.

Andrew was previously made a knight as a member of Queen Elizabeth's family, and he keeps that title irrespective of the other patronages and military titles he was forced to step away from in recent years. Andrew's fall from grace amid his association with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein became complete in February when he reached an out-of-court settlement with Virginia Giuffre in her sexual assault lawsuit against him.

His appearance on Monday could overshadow that of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, who will be invested in the order at a ceremony earlier in the Throne Room at the castle. Camilla, 74, was announced as a new member of the order in December — another step on her road to the most senior of royal roles.

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge
Prince Charles, Kate Middleton and Prince William at Order of the Garter in 2011. Arthur Edwards - WPA Pool /Getty

The order — which is nearly 700 years old — was awarded to Camilla by Queen Elizabeth and is a further sign of Camilla's importance in the family. The announcement seemed to herald the statement from the Queen, 96, in February that it was her wish that Camilla be titled Queen Consort when her husband Charles, 73, becomes king.

The palace is not commenting on whether the Queen will be able to make it to the event. Palace aides have made it a practice to only confirm her attendance at events in the hours beforehand.

Garter Day at Windsor, which sees knights wear long velvet robes and a hat decorated with white ostrich and black heron feathers, is the first day of a festive week for the Queen. Her favorite Royal Ascot horse race meeting begins on Tuesday, but it is unknown whether ongoing mobility issues will allow her to attend some or any of the days.

Queen's Platinum Jewels
The Queen attending the service. Getty

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair will also be invested in the order on Monday. The service hasn't been able to take place for the last two years because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Can't get enough of PEOPLE's Royals coverage? Sign up for our free Royals newsletter to get the latest updates on Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle and more!

Andrew was notably absent from Trooping the Colour on June 2, deciding not to attend after he was barred from appearing on the balcony of Buckingham Palace because he is no longer a working royal. The next day he missed the National Service of Thanksgiving, citing COVID positivity.

Related Articles