AN overwhelming majority of Scots believe Prince Andrew should be stripped of his Scottish title, a new poll commissioned exclusively for The National has revealed.

The Find Out Now survey found that a whopping 72% of the country thinks the scandal-hit royal should have his Earl of Inverness title removed.

Just 7% of respondents said Andrew should keep his Scottish title, with 16% responding don’t know and 4% opting not to say.

While he is widely known across the UK as the Duke of York, in Scotland the Prince has been known as the Earl of Inverness since 1986 when the Queen gave him the title on his wedding day.

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But following accusations of sexual assault – which Andrew denies – and his friendship with the late billionaire paedophile Jeffrey Epstein there have been mounting calls for the King’s brother to relinquish the honour.

A petition to have the Earl of Inverness's title removed from the disgraced royal received more than 11,000 signatures last year.

It followed the public trial in which the Earl paid out millions to settle a civil sexual assault case against Virginia Giuffre.

Giuffre sued Andrew for allegedly sexually assaulting her when she was 17 after she was trafficked by Epstein. Andrew denies the claims and says he has never met her.

Inverness MP Drew Hendry told The National that the public mood across the Highlands was clear.

The National: From left: Prince Andrew, Virginia Giuffre and Ghislaine MaxwellFrom left: Prince Andrew, Virginia Giuffre and Ghislaine Maxwell (Image: PA)

He said: "It's important to remember that his own mother, the late Queen, decided he was not fit to hold the titles he previously had, and she, herself, took most of these away.

“It would be very hard to find anyone in Inverness, or the wider Highlands, who thinks Andrew should hold onto his titles, especially 'Earl of Inverness'.”

The Prince has already had several of his royal titles removed after he stepped down from public life.

Last year the late Queen stripped him of all of his honorary military roles, including Colonel of the Grenadier Guards, and he gave up his HRH style.

Hendry continued: “He's already had an honorary position as President of Inverness golf club revoked, but there is no public power to take this Earl title away.

“It is entirely in his own hands. He should follow the example set by the late Queen and realise that it is not appropriate to retain these remaining titles"

The National: Prince Andrew has already had several of his royal titles removedPrince Andrew has already had several of his royal titles removed

Highland MSP Emma Roddick said the strength of feeling on the issue went beyond age and party lines.

The SNP politician said: “Most people will be unhappy that he is associated with Inverness and Scotland, perhaps even regardless of their wider view on the Royals.

“However, the monarchy by definition means that we do not get a say in who represents us, even who our head of state is.

“We must be able to vote people out when we want to.”

Graham Smith, CEO of the campaign group Republic, said the Prince is clearly “toxic” in Scotland.

He told The National: “It’s no surprise that Scottish people don’t want to be associated with Prince Andrew.

“He is toxic and his name has become a by-word for royal sleaze. He remains accused of serious offences and while he maintains his innocence, he has yet to fully cooperate with law enforcement.

“It’s been reported Andrew wants to return to public life, but clearly he should be instead be withdrawing further, losing those last titles he retains.

“I can’t imagine anyone in Inverness wants their town associated with this man, or for that matter anyone in Scotland.”

READ MORE: Politicians unite in fresh calls to strip Scottish title from Prince Andrew

The National poll comes amid reports in The Sun on Sunday and Mail on Sunday that the late Queen’s son is considering a legal bid to overturn Giuffre’s civil abuse case.

Andrew is reportedly “considering legal options” after Giuffre’s sex abuse case against US lawyer Alan Dershowitz fell apart.

LBC reported that the Prince is hoping such a move would allow him back into public life.

It also comes as disgraced socialite Ghislaine Maxwell said the well-known photo showing the Duke of York next to Giuffre is fake.

The National: Residents have described Prince Andrew's Scottish title as a 'stain' on the city of InvernessResidents have described Prince Andrew's Scottish title as a 'stain' on the city of Inverness

Maxwell, 61, who was convicted of sex trafficking, has previously cast doubt on the authenticity of the photo, said to be taken inside her Mayfair home, showing Andrew with his arm around Giuffre, and Maxwell in the background.

Speaking from prison in the US, Maxwell, who described Andrew as a “dear friend”, said she is “sure” the picture is not real.

But Our Republic, a group that campaigns for an independent Scottish republic, suggested Scots have already made their mind up on the Earl.

READ MORE: Anger over Prince Andrew's Scottish title amid Counsellor of State backlash

A spokesperson for the group said: “There aren't many things that you can get everyone to agree on, but Prince Andrew has managed to nail down one.

“After being gifted Inverness as a wedding present from his mum he has united the people of Inverness against him as he stained the reputation of the city by association.

“After all he has done it is probably too much to expect him to do the right thing and abandon his titles, but we should be able to expect his family to have some respect for the people they claim to lead by stripping him of them, and prevent the stain marring their communities any longer. Inverness deserves to be free of him.

“Cities are made by their people, and those people have a right to decide who represents them. Never again should the privilege of that station be traded between a fading aristocracy as gifts."

The polling was carried out by Find Out Now for Electoral Calculus on behalf of The National.

Between January 11 to 18 this year, 1098 Scottish adults were interviewed for the survey.

Buckingham Palace has been approached for comment.

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