PRINCE Andrew has completed a daredevil abseil down the Shard in London to raise £300,000 for charity. The Duke of York scaled down the outside of Europe’s tallest building as part of a group of 40 supporting The Outward Bound Trust and the Royal Marines Charitable Trust Fund.

The 52-year-old royal, who started from the 87th floor and finished on level 20, said afterwards: ‘I will never do it again.’

Once he was safely back on the ground, the Prince said: ‘The charity is close to my heart given my time in the Navy. It’s about getting young people to face challenges.’

He added that the hardest part was scaling the 1,016 ft building ahead of his abseil. He said: ‘You have a moment to realise what you are doing and where you are going to go.

‘The training I had done over the summer with the Royal Marines in Arbroath gave me the confidence to step out over the edge without too much trepidation.’

He added: ‘I’m not even going to say that was a piece of cake or not. I will never do it again. ‘I have to say, the most difficult bit was walking up the stairs.’

Andrew said he came up with the idea of abseiling down the Shard as a fundraising opportunity last year, when the skyscraper was being built.

The money raised for Outward Bound will be used to fund outdoor activities and learning for children who live in inner cities.

Asked what the Queen thought about his descent, the Duke of York said: ‘When I spoke to her last at Balmoral she was interested in why we were doing it and when I spoke to her about all the safety and the activities that were going on around it, about the teamwork... she understood what all the risks were and, like the incredible monarch she is, she was entirely happy.

‘But this is not about me, this is about young people, this is about young people’s future, this is about changing people’s lives and giving them the opportunity.’

After Andrew completed the first descent of the day, he was followed by Foreign Secretary William Hague’s wife Ffion, who is Outward Bound’s deputy chairman.

Mrs Hague described abseiling from such a height as ‘scary, exhilarating and truly terrifying’ and said her husband thought she was mad when she first mentioned the idea.                                       –MO