The Duke of Edinburgh to retire from public engagements

Photo Credit – Wikipedia, Photo by Aaron McCracken/Harrisons 07778373486

Sudden news of a Royal Household staff meeting scheduled for the morning of May 4, 2017 caused a night of speculation regarding the health of Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh.  In addition to staff in London, staff from Windsor Castle, Sandringham, and Balmoral were called to an emergency meeting at Buckingham Palace in London.   In the morning, Buckingham Palace released the following announcement:
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.
Prince Philip will celebrate his 96th birthday next month and has been supporting his wife in her duties since their wedding 70 years ago. He is the longest-serving consort of a reigning British monarch and the oldest-ever male member of the British royal family.  Like his wife, Prince Philip is a great-great-grandchild of Queen Victoria, but through her daughter Princess Alice who married Ludwig IV, Grand Duke of Hesse and by Rhine.  Prince Philip carried out 110 days of engagements in 2016, making him the fifth busiest member of the royal family.  He had carried out an engagement on May 3, 2017 at Lord’s Cricket Ground to open a new stand where he joked that he is the “world’s most experienced plaque unveiler”.
In 1956, Prince Philip founded The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award which recognizes young people for completing a series of self-improvement exercises modeled on Kurt Hahn’s solution to the “Six Declines of Modern Youth.”  The program now exists in 144 countries.  In recent years, Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex and his wife Sophie, Countess of Wessex have taken on most of the duties related to the program.
Prince Philip will accompany Queen Elizabeth II today, May 4, 2017, to a service for members of the Order of Merit at the Chapel Royal, St. James’s Palace. Afterward, they will host a luncheon for those attending the service.
The remaining engagements for Prince Philip on Buckingham Palace’s Future Engagements:

  • 9 May 2017: Her Majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will visit Pangbourne College, Pangbourne, Reading, Berkshire, to celebrate its Centenary.
  • 14 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh will present the prizes for the DAKS Challenge Trophy, at the Royal Windsor Horse Show.
  • 15 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, Chartered Management Institute, will attend the President’s Dinner at Banqueting House, Whitehall
  • 16 May 2017: Her Majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will give a Garden Party.
  • 17 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Honorary Cormorant, will attend the Cormorant Club’s 70th-anniversary Reception, at the Royal United Services Institute, Whitehall, London, SW1.
  • 18 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, the Pakistan Society, will attend a Dinner marking the 70th anniversary of the founding of Pakistan, at Mansion House, London, EC4.
  • 19 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, will hold a Dinner at Frogmore House, Home Park Windsor.
  • 21 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Colonel, Grenadier Guards, will attend the Regimental Remembrance Service at the Guards Chapel, Wellington Barracks, Birdcage Walk, London, SW1.
  • 22 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Colonel, Grenadier Guards, will attend the First Guards Club Dinner, at the Cavalry and Guards Club, London, SW1.
  • 22 May 2017: Her Majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will visit the Chelsea Flower Show at the Royal Hospital Chelsea.
  • 22 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Colonel, Grenadier Guards, will hold a Regimental Council Meeting at Buckingham Palace.
  • 24 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, will hold Receptions for young people who have achieved the Gold Standard in the Award, at Buckingham Palace.
  • 30 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, the Air League, will hold a Reception at St. James’s Palace.
  • 31 May 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, London Youth, will hold an afternoon Reception at Buckingham Palace.
  • 1 June 2017: Her Majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will give a Garden Party.
  • 7 June 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, will hold a Reception at The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace.
  • 8 June 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Honorary Member, Smeatonian Society of Civil Engineers, will attend a Dinner at 1 Great George Street, London, SW1.
  • 13 June 2017: Her Majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will attend Evensong at the Chapel Royal, Hampton Court Palace to celebrate the Centenary of the Companions of Honour.
  • 14 June 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron, Plan International UK, will hold a Reception to mark its 80th anniversary, at Buckingham Palace.
  • 16 June 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Colonel, Grenadier Guards, will hold the Senior Colonel’s Conference at Buckingham Palace.
  • 19 June 2017: Her Majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will attend a Service for the Order of the Garter at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle.
  • 27 June 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Honorary Fellow, Zoological Society of London, will present The Prince Philip Award for Contributions to Zoology, at ZSL London Zoo, Regent’s Park, London NW1.
  • 30 June 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Member, The Coaching Club, will attend a dinner at the Visitor Centre Restaurant, Sandringham House.
  • 3 July 2017: The Duke of Edinburgh, Honorary Member, Incorporation of Hammermen of Glasgow, will attend a Reception to mark the 50th anniversary of the Prince Philip Prize, at Trades Hall, 85 Glassford St, Glasgow.
  • 4 July 2017: Her Majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will give a Garden Party.
  • 12 July 2017 to 14 July 2017: Her Majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will host The King and Queen of Spain during their State Visit to the United Kingdom when they will stay at Buckingham Palace.

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