Prince Andrew asked tax haven tycoons for £200,000

Prince Andrew asked tax haven tycoons for £200,000 to fix up the Queen’s chapel in Windsor, leaked papers reveal

  • Prince Andrew requested the loan from bank chief executive Jonathan Rowland
  • The Duke of York wanted the funds to spend on the Royal Chapel in Windsor 
  • Mr Rowland’s father David had earlier paid off a £1.5m loan for the Duke of York 

Prince Andrew sought a £200,000 loan to finance a building project at the Queen’s private church from the boss of a controversial bank that he has secretly promoted around the world.

Leaked documents reveal the Duke of York requested the money from Jonathan Rowland, chief executive of Banque Havilland, to spend on the Royal Chapel of All Saints, which stands in the grounds of his stately home in Windsor Great Park. Mr Rowland told the Duke he was sure ‘we can help on good terms’.

The revelation follows reports that property tycoon David Rowland, Jonathan’s father and a major Tory Party donor, paid off a separate £1.5 million that had been given to Andrew by Banque Havilland, which is based in Luxembourg and controlled by the Rowland family.

Prince Andrew sought a £200,000 loan from the son of Tory party donor David Rowland, left, to help fund work on the Queen’s private church in Windsor

Leaked documents reveal the Duke of York requested the money from Jonathan Rowland, chief executive of Banque Havilland, to spend on the Royal Chapel of All Saints, which stands in the grounds of his stately home in Windsor Great Park. Mr Rowland told the Duke he was sure ‘we can help on good terms’

The Prince has faced questions about his financial relationship with David and Jonathan Rowland since The Mail on Sunday exposed his secret business activities in December 2019, including how he plugged their bank while on official trade missions intended to promote UK business. Astonishingly, he also allowed the Rowlands to shoehorn meetings into his official trade tours so they could expand Banque Havilland and woo wealthy clients.

Now, the MoS can reveal that Andrew, who was known as ‘Client X’ by the bank’s staff, sought money from the Rowlands to pay for repairs at a church with emotional significance to the Queen.

Buckingham Palace and Andrew’s spokesman have refused to say whether he received the loan and – if so – whether he paid it back.

Located less than 100 yards from Royal Lodge, the Duke’s 30-room home, the Royal Chapel of All Saints acts as an informal parish church for residents and staff of Windsor Great Park. It is where the Queen worships when in residence at Windsor Castle.

It was the venue for Princess Beatrice’s marriage to Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi in July last year and the Queen Mother’s coffin lay before the chapel’s altar for two days in 2002 before being taken to London for her state funeral.

In a message to Jonathan Rowland, then chief executive of Banque Havilland, in June 2011, Andrew requested a four-year loan, indicating that he was unable to raise the cash from the church’s congregation. ‘I need to facilitate a loan of £200k for more work on my chapel in the garden of RL [Royal Lodge],’ he wrote. ‘I would like to know what you can do for me and what it would cost me to take a loan for £200k paid back over four years?

‘It is going to be difficult to raise that amount from the small congregation and friends in time to get it done before so my contribution would be the interest costs for four years.’

Jonathan Rowland, 46, replied: ‘OK. Come back to you. Sure we can help on good terms.’

Palace sources last night said no building work has been carried out on the chapel since the email exchange. The last work is understood to have taken place in 2008.

The Duke’s request for a loan came a year after David Rowland paid £40,000 to help clear debts amassed by Andrew’s ex-wife Sarah Ferguson. Four months before that, Andrew took the financier to the Queen’s Scottish estate in Balmoral, where he reportedly met the Monarch and Prince Charles.

Responding to the new revelations, Norman Baker, a former Minister who has written a book about Royal finances, said: ‘I find it extraordinary that Andrew should be seeking to pull in a favour from a financial friend for the Queen’s chapel. He needs to say whether he took the money that he requested and, if so, whether he paid it back.’

Last month, financial website Bloomberg reported that David Rowland, 76, transferred £1.5 million to Andrew in December 2017, days after the Queen’s second son borrowed a similar sum from Banque Havilland. A year later, Banque Havilland was fined €4 million for not having safeguards to protect against money laundering, one of the biggest fines ever levied by the Luxembourg regulator.

David Rowland, who has given the Tories £6 million, was announced as the party’s treasurer in 2010 but stepped down before starting the job after it emerged that he had been living as a tax exile in Guernsey.

A spokesman for Banque Havilland said: ‘The bank can confirm it has not and does not make loans on chapels. The bank categorically denies any wrongdoing.’

Prince Andrew and Jonathan Rowland declined to comment.

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