Liverpool Council has shunned government instructions to fly the Union Jack to mark the birthday of Prince Andrew.
The Duke of York turns 60 on February 19 and according to requests from the government all councils should fly the flag to mark the occasion.
But Mayor Joe Anderson has rejected the instructions, saying he doesn’t think it would be appropriate.
Wouldn’t be appropriate
Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, he said:
“This isn’t to do with being anti-royal, we have flown the flag for the Queen before.
“But Prince Andrew isn’t a major royal, he’s not a significant member of the Royal Family.”
Mayor Anderson also made reference to the fact Prince Andrew is facing scrutiny over his relationship with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein – the billionaire financier.
He added: “When you look at his behaviour – it wouldn’t be appropriate for us to mark his birthday.”
Crass and offensive
The order to councils to fly the Union flag on the Duke of York’s birthday has been criticised as “crass and offensive” by campaigners.
Republic, a campaign to replace the monarchy with an elected head of state, said councils had better things to worry about than “daft royal protocols”.
CEO Graham Smith said: “This is crass and offensive, and that even at the best of times it’s nonsense to be flying flags for Andrew’s or anyone else’s birthday.
“Councils are struggling to provide core services, they have better things to worry about than daft royal protocols.
“And to think we should be celebrating a man who has serious accusations of sexual assault hanging over his head is particularly appalling.
“It’s time we ended the whole nonsense of flying flags for royal birthdays.
“It’s inappropriate in a democracy and the public aren’t interested. I think we’d all rather see councils spend their time and money getting services delivered.”