4 May 2017

Prince Philip to stand down from royal duties

9:49 pm on 4 May 2017

The Duke of Edinburgh will retire from royal duties in August, Buckingham Palace has announced.

The Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, at his latest public engagement where he opened the new Warner Stand at Lord's Cricket Ground in London yesterday.

Prince Philip Photo: AFP

The decision was made by Prince Philip and supported by the Queen, a palace spokesman said.

He would attend previously scheduled engagements between now and August but would not accept new invitations.

The prince - who turns 96 next month - carried out 110 days of engagements last year.

He was the patron, the president or a member of more than 780 organisations and would continue to be associated with them, but "will no longer play an active role by attending engagements", Buckingham Palace said.

In the statement, the spokesman said the duke "may still choose to attend certain public events from time to time".

The palace said the 91-year-old queen would continue to carry out her full programme of engagements.

The pair celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary in November.

Speculation over staff meeting

The announcement followed widespread speculation about a staff meeting at the palace.

Queen Elizabeth, Britain's longest-reigning monarch, has generally been in good health in recent years, although she has cut down on travel and public appearances as she enters her tenth decade.

Both she and her husband had heavy colds over the British winter this year.

Prince Philip was made a member of the Order of New Zealand in 2012 to mark Queen Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee.

Across the ditch, he was also knighted by then-Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott in 2015, a move Mr Abbott later said was 'injudicious'.

- BBC / Reuters / RNZ

  • 'No cause for alarm' over Buckingham Palace staff meeting