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Prince Charles axes senior aide poached from Queen

In an unprecedented move in royal circles, Prince Charles has suddenly chucked out one of his most senior staff members just three years after "poaching" him from the Buckingham Palace.

world Updated: Aug 22, 2009 13:13 IST

In an unprecedented move in royal circles, Prince Charles has suddenly chucked out one of his most senior staff members just three years after "poaching" him from the Buckingham Palace.

Andrew Farquharson was in charge of the Queen's entertaining for ten years before joining Prince Charles' residence as Deputy Master of the Household in February 2006.

The 44-year-old courtier said to be 'deeply shocked' by his dismissal has refused the prince's offer to work his six months' notice and walked out, the Dailymail reported.

"Yes, your story is true but I cannot comment any further. I can't afford to blot my copybook, but it's kind of you to ask," Farquharson was quoted by the paper.

A Clarence House spokesman on Friday said that the axing was simply a cost-cutting measure but agreed that Farquharson is the only person to be made redundant so far.

"Like any large organisation we are continually reviewing our resources and how they are employed and we concluded that Andrew's post was no longer required," he said.

The move is surprising because Farquharson was considered to be very close to the Prince.

"If the prince sneezed, Andrew employed the flunkey to provide him with his handkerchief. There was no pie he didn't have a finger in and that's why the prince's decision is so surprising", a Clarence House source said.