Duke of Edinburgh thanked for ‘unstinting’ public service

The Dean of the Chapel Royal in Scotland has thanked the Duke of Edinburgh Prince Philip for his “unstinting” promotion of organisations across the country.

Prince Philip
Her Majesty the Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh arriving at St Columba's Church in London December 3 2015 for a service of thanksgiving to mark the 60th anniversary of the re-dedication of the building, which was destroyed during WWII.

Inspirational

The Duke of Edinburgh is retiring from royal duties this autumn, Buckingham Palace announced this morning.

The Duke, who turns 96 next month, will attend previously scheduled engagements between now and August but will not accept new invitations.

It is understood he last attended worship in Scotland at Crathie Kirk last September, which the Royal Family regularly visit when they are holidaying at nearby Balmoral Castle.

He is patron, president or member of more than 780 organisations and charities.

His Duke of Edinburgh’s Award scheme has inspired young people for more than 60 years in over 140 nations and is one of the UK's best known charities.

The Very Rev Professor Iain Torrance, Dean of the Chapel Royal in Scotland and Dean of the Order of the Thistle, said: “In Scotland we are so used to public events with our witty and eagle-eyed Duke of Edinburgh, wearing his kilt in Deeside, unmatched in his unstinting promotion elsewhere of the many organisations for which he is Patron, and always in steadfast support of The Queen. We salute him with great affection as he retires from these public roles and thank him with all our hearts.”

Well-deserved retirement

The Moderator of the General Assembly, Rt Rev Russell Barr, said: “Her Majesty the Queen has often spoken about the unwavering support she has enjoyed over the years from the Duke of Edinburgh and so the Duke’s decision to retire from public duties is not one which will have been taken lightly.

“Of all the many groups and organisations with which he has been involved, I have appreciated the leadership he has given to the Duke of Edinburgh scheme, something which has enhanced and transformed the lives of countless numbers of young people.

“Long past the normal age of retirement the Duke has continued to lead a full and active public life and, as well as offering him the Church of Scotland’swarmest thanks, let me assure him of our prayers for continuing health and strength in his well-deserved retirement.”

Last year Prince Philip had to pull out of attending a memorial service for the Battle of Jutland centenary atSt Magnus Cathedral in Orkney due to ill health.

The Duke’s only daughter Anne, HRH the Princess Royal, will be the Lord High Commissioner at this year’s General Assembly of the Church of Scotland which opens on May 20 in Edinburgh.