It is with very great sadness that we have heard of the death of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.
It was in Devon as a young naval officer, training at Britannia Royal Naval College, that Prince Philip met and later married Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. Not surprisingly therefore the County has been important to them both throughout their lives and they have visited us here many times.
Prince Philip held many senior ranks and positions in his long life which included being the Lord High Steward of Plymouth, a post that he held from March 1960. He was also awarded an honorary degree from the University of Plymouth in 2012. Plymouth and nearby Bickleigh and Lympstone near Exeter, were regular destinations for him in the County until he retired from public duties in 2017. This is because His Royal Highness was the Captain General of the Royal Marines, a post he held for 64 years and in which capacity he visited many times, both publicly and in private. The Duke was also Colonel-in-Chief of successive Regiments that have made up The Rifles since 1953.
Prince Philip was also the Patron and President of many of our county charities and they will all be very sad to hear of the news of his death. He had a particular interest in conservation of the environment, in scientific and technological research and in the encouragement of sport. He is perhaps best known however for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award which he founded 64 years ago and has become the world’s leading youth achievement award and is now in 140 countries around the world.
He was a great man who contributed hugely to our Country and our County; a constant and loyal support to her Majesty and he did all this while demonstrating a genuine interest in people and with a wonderful sense of humour which was so often on display.
We give thanks for a wonderful life. May he rest in peace.
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