Amanda Thirsk: Where is Prince Andrew’s Chief of Staff Now?

Image Credit: Peter Mountain/Netflix

In Netflix’s ‘Scoop,’ we witness the process of bringing together different forces that lead to a sensational interview that changes everything for the people involved. At the center is Prince Andrew, who landed in controversy when Jeffrey Epstein’s crimes as a sex offender came to light, and the Prince’s friendship with him put the member of the Royal Family in a bind. It was clear that he would eventually have to come forward and give a statement to the public.

It wasn’t something he could ride out with his silence, which is why his private secretary at the time, Amanda Thirsk, thought it would be better for him to speak out about it and clear the air before the public’s fingers were pointed at him. In hindsight, many would argue it wasn’t a smart decision and only accelerated the downfall of the Prince’s public image. But what happened to his private secretary? What is Amanda Thirsk up to today?

Amanda Thirsk Works in the Private Sector

A resident of London, England, Amanda Thirsk — Prince Andrew’s former private secretary — now works at JD dot com or Jingdong, an online retailer and one of the biggest e-commerce groups in China. She is employed in a senior business development role at the company and was recently reported to have been involved in the discussions and plans about her employer’s potential takeover of a London-based electrical goods chain called Currys. Born in July 1965, Thirsk graduated from the University of Cambridge, where she studied law.

Image Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire

A mother to three children, she started her professional life as a banker and eventually came into employment with the Royal Family in 2004. Initially, Thirsk joined the team of Prince Andrew’s staff to take care of his financial affairs, given her background in banking. By 2012, she had landed the job of his private secretary, taking care of the Prince’s day-to-day affairs while also making sure that his public image was intact, a task that proved rather challenging once the Jeffery Epstein scandal broke out. It was also noted that while Thirsk was dedicated to her job and had earned her way up, she didn’t have any history of working in public relations or any prior experience dealing with the media.

Once the interview with Newsnight came out and Prince Andrew found himself at the receiving end of the public backlash, immediate steps were taken by the Palace. While the Prince was asked to step away from public duties for the foreseeable future, his staff was also significantly cut down, including the removal of Thirsk. Reportedly, the decision to end her employment came directly from the late Queen. Eventually, a legal settlement was reached between Thirsk and the Palace, where she received a five-figure payout and was allowed to serve as the CEO of Pitch@Palace Global Limited, the endeavor that the Prince founded to bring together entrepreneurs and investors.

Thirsk was also put in charge of iDEA, the Duke of York Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award. Reportedly, she also received $450,000 by PACT for her role as a trustee. A while later, she moved on from Pitch and accepted the job offer at JD, where she is currently employed. Described as “the epitome of professional” by Sam McAlister, Thirsk is said to have received the axe from her duties as the Prince’s private secretary for not only letting him do the interview with Newsnight but actually insisting and encouraging him to go forward with it, even when, reportedly, concerns were raised by other members of the staff about her decision.

The Prince’s ex-wife, Sarah Ferguson, also blamed Thirsk, believing that her ill judgment led to what is described as the car crash of an interview. Whether or not Thirsk is to blame for the interview, everyone attests to her unwavering loyalty to the Prince. Reportedly, her faith in the Prince’s ability to revive his image to the public through the interview was based on her own belief that her employer really was innocent of the things he was being blamed for and that once he received the right platform, he would successfully explain away all the doubts and questions surrounding his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein. Perhaps she was caught up in this blind spot in her loyalty.

No matter how things turned out with the Prince, Amanda Thirsk has now moved on from the Royal Family and is continuing her life in a different direction. Since she left the Prince’s employment, she has heavily limited her engagement with the media and prefers to remain away from the spotlight and enjoy her privacy, dedicating more time to herself and her family.

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