Cops Apologise After Challenging Duke At Palace

The Duke of York has said he is "grateful" for an apology from police after officers challenged him in the Buckingham Palace gardens.

The Met confirmed he was ordered to verify his identity by two officers at around 6pm on Wednesday.

A police spokesman said: "The man was satisfactorily identified. No weapons were drawn and no force was used."

He was challenged after returning from an engagement in London's Piccadilly - at an event to support new business ventures.

The confrontation came less than 48 hours after a break-in at the palace where an intruder was able to scale a fence and get inside the building before being arrested.

A security review has been launched following Monday night's suspected burglary which happened when the Queen was not in residence.

Police said the man was found shortly before 10.30pm "in an area currently open to the public during the day" and arrested for burglary, trespass and criminal damage.

A second man was arrested outside the palace for conspiracy to commit burglary.

Both men have been bailed to return to a central London police station while enquiries continue.

Prince Andrew said in a statement: "The police have a difficult job to do balancing security for the Royal Family and deterring intruders, and sometimes they get it wrong.

"I am grateful for their apology and look forward to a safe walk in the garden in the future."

In response the Met said: "In light of media reports we can confirm that the man spoken to by officers was the Duke of York. We are making this public with HRH's permission.

"We are grateful to the Duke for his understanding and have apologised for any inconvenience caused."

The Queen made her traditional appearance at a Highland Games on Saturday as details of the break-in emerged.

She was joined by the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales at the Braemar Gathering in Aberdeenshire, where the royal party watched pipe bands and dancers perform to a large crowd.

The Queen has been spending her summer break at Balmoral Castle since the beginning of August and is not expected to return to the palace until October.