Prince Andrew's support bubble is said to be wearing thin following news that he is set to face a civil case this year for his sexual abuse case.

The Duke of York now only has the support of his direct family, composed of ex-wife Sarah Ferguson and their two daughters Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie. As for the others, they are said to be distancing themselves from the scandal that he has brought upon the monarchy.

"Look, from what I hear his immediate family – Sarah Ferguson, his two daughters – are behind him. But other members of the Royal Family very much are not," royal expert Chris Ship said during an interview on "Good Morning Britain" on Thursday.

He said the other royals "are wanting to try and end this in whatever way they can in terms of the damage for the wider institution." Ship added, "The support he has amongst the wider family is very, very thin on the ground indeed." He also called Prince Andrew's sexual abuse case "such a huge distraction" especially with the upcoming Platinum Jubilee celebrations for Queen Elizabeth II.

Meanwhile, royal biographer Angela Levin said that Her Majesty must be "heartbroken" that Prince Andrew "let her down in this way when she should really be getting excited for the Platinum Jubilee."

"The problem is the court case has to be prepared for during the summer months. He can't win in any way - certainly not in public opinion which is very important to the Royal Family," she said.

New York Judge Lewis Kaplan refused attempts by the Duke of York's legal team to throw out his sexual abuse case. Instead, he decided that a court trial will happen sometime this year with both defendant and plaintiff expected to gather their witnesses and complete their depositions by July.

It is said that Prince Andrew wants to settle the case out of court. But Queen Elizabeth II and the rest of the British royals refuse to financially support him. Prince Charles and Prince William are said to be furious at the suggestion that the 95-year-old monarch could foot the bill. As such, the duke reportedly sold his Swiss chalet to help with the legal fees.

Prince Andrew
Prince Andrew has vehemently denied claims he had sex with Virginia Giuffre, and said he has no recollection of meeting her Photo: AFP / JOHN THYS