Prince Phillip, who will be 96 next month, has decided to retire from royal duties this fall, according to an announcement by Buckingham Palace.
The Queen is said to support his decision. He will still attend anything that has been previously scheduled, but no new engagements are going to be added to his schedule from now on.
The Queen of England will still be carrying out all of her regular duties, but her workload will be slightly lightened.
The Prime Minister, Therese May, said that she offers “deepest gratitude and good wishes” in his retirement.
This sudden retirement has brought about rumors that Prince Phillip and the Queen are dead, and now, the palace has had to issue a formal statement saying, “You could safely assume the Queen and Prince Phillip are not dead.”
Although no one should really bat an eye at someone retiring at the ripe old age of 96, it must seem odd when Queen Elizabeth II, at 91, is still chugging on.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn wished the duke “all the best in his well-earned retirement”, saying: “He has dedicated his life to supporting the Queen and our country with a clear sense of public duty.
“His Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme has inspired young people for more than 60 years in over 140 nations.” Prince Philip set up the awards in 1956 and they have become one of the UK’s best-known youth programmes, with young people carrying out challenges to earn bronze, silver or gold awards.
Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron said: “Perhaps 30 years later than most people retire, the Duke of Edinburgh is announcing that that is what he is intending to do, and I think it is a moment to celebrate and take stock of the enormous achievements that he has made in his life so far.” Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said the “steadfast support” the duke had given the Queen was “hugely admirable”.
“He has always served with enthusiasm and a healthy sense of humour,” she said. “I have always thoroughly enjoyed any time that I have spent in his company.”