Prince Edward has spoken out about his father’s recent announcement that he is stepping down from full-time Royal duties, insisting The Duke of Edinburgh will not be ‘disappearing into the background’ nor
Speaking to Sky News, The Earl of Wessex said: “I don’t believe that he’s going to be putting his feet up completely, disappearing into the background and never being seen again.”
“He’ll pick and choose what he wants to do, how he wants to do it and decide what’s sensible and what’s practical.”
The news came as something of a surprise to many, as it was expected Philip – like The Queen – would continue working for as long as physically possible, and both are in robust health.
The Duke of Edinburgh will undertake a handful of engagements each year, but will select these events himself. He will almost certainly still be seen at Trooping the Colour and the Order of the Garter ceremony each year, although 2017’s service has been cancelled due to the rescheduled State Opening of Parliament.
Not undertaking regular Royal duties means he will have more time for his hobbies, which include carriage riding, painting and shooting.
Edward, 53, said that it the announcement made it ‘absolutely clear’ to organisations linked to the Prince Consort that he will no longer necessarily accept invitations to their events.
The Earl also joked that the move ‘is quite good for the rest of us’, showing it might actually be possible to retire as a working Royal; although Prince Philip is 95!
The Royal was attending the Royal Windsor Jaguar Festival, where timeless cars were on public display in aid of the Prince Philip Trust Fund, which raises money for young people living in the borough of Windsor and Maidenhead.
He was asked if anyone in particular would be taking over his father’s patronages and work, to which Prince Edward responded: “It’s always a team effort, and that’s what we do. If an actor retires from a show, guess what? The show goes on – everybody shuffles round and we all fill in the spaces and keep it going.
“We support each other constantly. It’s been the case that if anybody has ever fallen ill that we’ve done our best to fill the gap and to keep the show going.”
Talking of his father’s lengthy career, Edward said: “He has always been immensely helpful and jolly. The great thing about my father is that nobody has ever forgotten meeting him.
“They’ve all got their stories. Wherever he’s been, wherever in the world – people still remember him, and will continue to remember him. You can’t really get a better accolade than that.”