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English Duke who hosted Queen’s funeral gets driving ban


England’s oldest Duke, who hosted the Queen’s funeral, was banned from driving despite saying he needed his license to hold the coronation of King Charles III.

Edward Fitzalan-Howard, a 65-year-old aristocrat, was caught using his mobile phone and running a red light while driving his BMW in south-west London in April.

He admitted the offense but tried to avoid the six-month driving ban by citing “exceptional hardship” because of his responsibilities.

In his role as Duke of Norfolk, he helped organize the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II in September, which around 28 million Britons watched on TV.

Fitzalan-Howard, the senior member of the English peerage system, is also responsible for arranging the coronation of King Charles III next year.

The BBC reported that lawyer Natasha Dardashti told a London court: “He has to be mobile to achieve what he needs to achieve in this regard.

“His Grace must be able to organize what is a huge event.”

But magistrates imposed a six-month driving ban on the Duke, who had already recorded two speeding tickets, and ordered him to pay £1,200 (€1,347).

“We accept that this is a unique case because of the defendant’s role in society and in particular in relation to the coronation of the king,” said court bench president Judith Wray.

‘Hardship must be exceptional and although we see that inconvenience may be caused, we do not believe this is exceptional hardship.’

Fitzalan-Howard, who was educated at Oxford University, inherited the post of 18th Duke of Norfolk after his father’s death in 2002.

The title is linked to England’s historic peerage system and signifies that the Duke is responsible for organizing state ceremonies.

He was one of a handful of people who signed the Proclamation of Accession after the Queen’s death, which marked the transition of power to King Charles III.

euronews Gt

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