Tuesday, 27 Jul 2021

Prince Edward WILL become Duke of Edinburgh ‘by 2029’, says Queen’s former aide

Prince Charles ‘has his own style’ says Richard Fitzwilliams

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The Queen’s former press secretary firmly believes Prince Edward will eventually become the Duke of Edinburgh after Prince Charles becomes King. He wrote on Twitter: “That Prince Edward will become The Duke of Edinburgh in the next reign was his father’s and is his mother’s wishes and Prince Charles won’t go against those.

“It won’t happen immediately but by 2029, when Edwards turns 65, it will.

“Time for speculation, without substance, to cease.”

In 1999, when Prince Edward married Sophie, Buckingham Palace announced the couple would take the titles of Earl and Countess of Wessex.

But, the Palace added, the Queen, Philip and Charles had “agreed that the Prince Edward should be given the Dukedom of Edinburgh in due course, when the present title now held by Prince Philip eventually reverts to the Crown.”

However, more than two decades later, insiders have claimed it is far from certain the Earl will become the Duke of Edinburgh.

A source told the Sunday Times: “The Prince is the Duke of Edinburgh as it stands, and it is up to him what happens to the title. It will not go to Edward.”

Another source added: “Edinburgh won’t go to [the Wessexes] as far as the prince is concerned.”

The Palace has remained tight-lipped on this issue, with Clarence House telling People magazine: “All stories of this nature are speculation and no final decisions have been taken.

“It would be inappropriate and disrespectful to the Queen to comment on matters of accession and we will be maintaining our long-standing policy of not doing so.”

Prince Philip was created Duke of Edinburgh by King George VI upon marrying then Princess Elizabeth.

Following his death on April 9, Prince Charles automatically inherited all the titles borne by Prince Philip.

Once he becomes King, all the titles Prince Charles currently has will either be passed on by him or held in abeyance.

Sophie recently recalled how it was the Duke of Edinburgh himself who asked Prince Edward to take on his title after his death.

Prince Philip asked the questions to the couple just a few days after their engagement.

Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, the Countess said: “We sat there slightly stunned.

“He literally came straight in and said: ‘Right. I’d like it very much if you would consider that.'”

Prince Edward also described possibly receiving the Duke of Edinburgh title as “bittersweet”.

He said: “It’s a very bittersweet role to take on because the only way the title can come to me is after both my parents have actually passed away.

“It has to go back to the Crown first.”

Edward added: “My father was very keen that the title should continue, but he didn’t quite move quickly enough with Andrew, so it was us who he eventually had the conversation with. It was a lovely idea; a lovely thought.”

In June, Prince Edward hinted the fate of the Edinburgh title lays in the hands of Prince Charles.

Speaking about taking over the title from his late father, he told the BBC: “Yes, it was fine in theory ages ago, when it was a sort of pipe dream of my father’s and of course, it will all depend on whether or not the Prince of Wales, when he becomes King, will do that so we’ll wait and see.”

When asked about the duties of the role, he replied: “Yes, it will be quite a challenge.”

Prince Edward already took charge of one of the most successful initiatives launched by Prince Philip in his lifetime – the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme – following his father’s retirement in 2017.

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