HRH The Prince Philip

HRH The Prince Philip

Duke of Edinburgh 

10th June 1921- 9th April 2021

It is with great sadness that we here record the death of HRH the Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. The congregation of St Swithin’s Church and the villagers and parishioners of Barston send their condolences to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth at this very sad time. He is at peace now and with His Lord above. 

 

Philip was born on the Greek island of Corfu on 10th June 1921. He was the only son and fifth and final child of Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark and Princess Alice of Battenberg. (He was a prince of both Greece and Denmark by virtue of his descent from George I of Greece and Christian IX of Denmark).  The family was exiled from Greece when Philip was an infant. They settled initially in Paris, where Philip attended an American school. In 1928 he was sent to the UK and attended Cheam School; he lived with his maternal grandmother and his uncle, George Mountbatten, Marquess of Milford Haven, at Lynden Manor in Bray, Berkshire. 

Philip’s secondary education was at Gordonstoun. He then trained at the Royal Naval College in Dartmouth. During the second World War he continued to serve in the British Forces. He was commissioned as a sub-lieutenant in February 1941; promotion to lieutenant followed in July 1942 – at the age of 21 he became one of the youngest first lieutenants in the Royal Navy. He had served in combat in the Mediterranean and the Pacific throughout the second World War.

He had met the Princess Elizabeth in 1934 when they began to correspond with each other. On February 28th1947, Philip became a British subject and renounced his right to the Greek and Danish thrones. He took his mother’s surname, Mountbatten. He and the Princess Elizabeth married in Westminster Abbey on the 20thNovember 1947. On the eve of this event, he was designated a royal highness and was created a Knight of the Garter, Baron Greenwich, earl of Merioneth and Duke of Edinburgh.

The couple’s first child, Charles Philip Arthur George was born on 1948. He was followed by Anne Elizabeth Alice Louise (1950), Andrew Albert Christian Edward (1960) and Edward Anthony Richard Louis (1964). 

Philip continued on active service with the Royal Navy, commanding the frigate Magpie until his wife’s accession on 6th February 1952, from which time he shared her official and public life. He attended an average of 350 engagements a year on behalf of the royal household. In 1957 her majesty  conferred on him the dignity of Prince of the United Kingdom, and in 1960 his surname was legally combined with the name of her family – as Mountbatten-Windsor. 

While much of his time was spent fulfilling royal duties, Prince Philip engaged in a variety of philanthropic endeavours. He served as President of the World Wildlife Fund from 1981 to 1996. He also established an International Award programme - this has allowed more than six million young adults to engage in community service, leadership development and physical fitness activities. 

In May 2011 the Queen conferred on her husband the title and office of lord high admiral, the titular head of the Royal Navy.

In May 2017 it was announced that Prince Philip – one of the busiest royals – would stop carrying out public engagements in August. Indeed, his last solo event took place on 2nd August 2017.