It has just been announced from Buckingham Palace that Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, will retire from royal duties later this year.
The Duke made the decision himself, and has the support of his wife, The Queen.
The announcement was made after a staff meeting was called at the Palace, with staff coming from Balmoral and Sandringham, hinting it was going to be a personal announcement.
Philip, who turns 96 in June, will end his Royal duties for ‘retirement’ in the autumn, and will carry out his scheduled summer engagements. He will choose to attend a handful of public events, but will not be ‘accepting new invitations’ and will remain patron of more than 700 organisations.
A statement said:
His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh has decided that he will no longer carry out public engagements from the autumn of this year. In taking this decision, The Duke has the full support of The Queen.
Prince Philip will attend previously scheduled engagements between now and August, both individually and accompanying The Queen. Thereafter, The Duke will not be accepting new invitations for visits and engagements, although he may still choose to attend certain public events from time to time.
The Duke of Edinburgh is Patron, President or a member of over 780 organisations, with which he will continue to be associated, although he will no longer play an active role by attending engagements.
Her Majesty will continue to carry out a full programme of official engagements with the support of members of the Royal Family.
The Duke is the oldest consort in British history, and has had a long ‘career’ supporting The Queen, so it is not surprising he is choosing to stop work – more that 30 years beyond the average retirement age.
More details as they come.