Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip to retire from royal engagements in September
By Sewe Ishola
Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, who is the 95-year-old husband of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II, will retire from carrying out royal engagements later this year, Buckingham Palace confirmed on Thursday.
The prince, who has been by his wife’s side throughout her 65 years on the throne, has decided he would cease public duties from autumn (September), the palace said in a statement.
“Prince Philip will attend previously scheduled engagements between now and August, both individually and accompanying The Queen,” the statement said.
“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 announcement was made following a meeting of senior royal staff at Buckingham Palace, news of which prompted speculation about the health of the royals.
The couple, who are due to celebrate their platinum, or 70th, wedding anniversary in November have been cutting their workload in recent years, passing on many responsibilities to son and heir Prince Charles, and grandsons, Princes William and Harry.
While her father, George VI, died at 56, her mother lived until 101 and was still appearing in public almost up until her death in 2002.
Philip underwent “an exploratory operation following abdominal investigations” in 2013.
He was also hospitalised for a bladder infection during the queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations the year before, and spent Christmas 2011 in hospital where he underwent an operation to clear a blocked heart artery after suffering chest pains.
Both carried out official duties on Wednesday, with Elizabeth meeting Prime Minister, Theresa May to formally agree to the dissolution of parliament ahead of June’s election while Philip opened a new stand at Lord’s Cricket Ground in central London.
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