EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: Prince Andrew's public comeback with Falklands 40th

EDEN CONFIDENTIAL: Prince Andrew plots to use Falklands 40th anniversary tribute to fallen comrades next year for public comeback

Despite his current travails, no one can take away from Prince Andrew his heroic role as a helicopter pilot in the Falklands war.

And I hear the Queen’s second son plans to use his military career as a way to return to public life.

Next year is the 40th anniversary of the conflict in the South Atlantic, which claimed 255 British military lives, and the Duke of York will attend commemorative events in the summer.

‘The Duke is determined to take part in the Falklands commemorations,’ a source tells me. ‘The Falklands was a key moment in his life and he wants to honour his fallen comrades. He hopes this could help pave the way for a return to public life.’

Prince Andrew arrives to go riding In the grounds of Windsor

Today is the second anniversary of Andrew’s withdrawal from royal duties, after the overwhelmingly negative reaction to his Newsnight interview with Emily Maitlis about his ill-advised friendship with late sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Virginia Giuffre claims she was forced to have sex with the Duke on three occasions when she was 17.

However, earlier this month, a U.S. judge set a date in January for Andrew’s bid to have his accuser’s allegations thrown out.

Heroes’ return: Prince is met by the Queen following conflict

He has repeatedly and vehemently denied the claims.

My source tells me: ‘The Duke expects that the court action in New York will have been dealt with long before the Falklands events.’

A spokesman for one of the organisations Andrew is still involved with, the Falkland Islands Memorial Chapel Trust, tells me he will be welcome to attend. ‘We have a big commemorative service on June 12. It’s all about those who were lost, the veterans no matter who they were, those who were lucky enough to come home.’

A royal source is keen to make clear that Andrew would be attending events as a veteran, saying: ‘No invitation has been received for the Duke to attend events in an official capacity.’ Andrew’s spokesman declines to comment.

Has Kate given her catwalk career the boot?

She’s had one of the most successful careers in fashion, spanning three decades, but could Kate Moss finally be strutting away from the runway for good?

I ask because this week, the 47- year-old supermodel closed down the long-standing business through which she’s channelled her catwalk earnings, Skate.

Newly filed documents reveal that the company, which she set up in 2008, has officially ceased trading.

She’s had one of the most successful careers in fashion, spanning three decades, but could Kate Moss finally be strutting away from the runway for good?

At one point it had about £5million in assets. Her spokesman declines to comment but friends say she’s now focusing on the business she established in 2016 to manage the careers of fellow mannequins, the Kate Moss Agency.

‘I want people who can sing, dance and act,’ she explained at the time of the launch. ‘I want to create stars.’

The move comes after a removals lorry was spotted for two days in a row outside Moss’s house in North London, suggesting the reformed hedonist was quitting city life.

Moss also has a cottage in the Cotswolds, where she spent most of her time during the pandemic with daughter Lila, 19, and boyfriend Count Nikolai von Bismarck, 34. 

As the new boss of the landed gentry’s union, Mark Tufnell should be accustomed to sitting astride a horse as he hunts.

In a startling confession, Tufnell, who owns an estate in the Cotswolds, has, however, admitted he’s scared of all things equine.

And his fear prevented his becoming a vet.

‘I found I was terrified of horses — couldn’t go near them,’ the new president of the Country Landowners’ Association admits.

Let’s hope his members don’t gallop away…

Chelsea chocolate war set to end in sweet revenge for Chantal… 

Who knew that chocolate could leave such a bitter taste? Word reaches me of an unseemly feud in the genteel world of expensive treats.

At next week’s Chelsea Physic Garden Christmas fair, one stall will be manned by Chantal Coady, co-chair of the Academy of Chocolate, who will be officially launching her company, The Chocolate Detective.

Just across the lawn, West London’s well-heeled shoppers will find Rococo, the firm Coady founded and spent 37 years turning into a luxury brand adored by the Queen and Hollywood stars.

However, this stall will be operated by Rupert Morley, a Comic Relief trustee, now its sole owner.

Coady abruptly departed the company she loved so dearly in 2019. Morley invested in the company in 2017 when Rococo had five shops and had been valued at £10million.

To Coady’s dismay, she was gradually edged out of the business until it suddenly went into administration in 2019. Morley snapped up Rococo weeks later.

‘Losing Rococo has been utter hell for Chantal,’ a friend tells me. ‘She was wiped out financially and emotionally.

‘It has been desperately sad, but she is fighting back and starting from scratch again.’

Morley declines to comment, but I hope this war can have a sweet ending.

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