Sunday, 25 Jul 2021

Prince Philip title row: Prince Charles set to snub Edward to achieve long time goal

Prince Philip: Sophie Wessex on 'hole' Duke left in royals' lives

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Prince Philip signalled in 1999 he wanted Prince Edward to take on the mantle of Duke of Edinburgh once the position reverted back to the Crown at Prince Charles’ accession to the throne. The Prince of Wales automatically inherited the title when Philip died in April and since speculation has arisen about the future king snubbing his late father desires. Royal commentator Richard Kay suggested withholding the Duke of Edinburgh title would fall into line with Charles’ plans to reduce the number of working Royal Family members.

Speaking to Palace Confidential, Mr Kay said: “I suspect it’s to do with Prince Charles wanting to keep a handle on royal titles – who they go to.

“It’s also to do with his vision and framework for the future of a slimmed down monarchy, with fewer working parts to it.

“Having a new Duke of Edinburgh who has a son himself – Edward has a son who would, in due course, inherit the title one day – maybe Charles sees that as spreading it a bit too thin.

“We don’t entirely know.”

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Prince Edward is a father of two, and his youngest and only son, James, Viscount Severn, is already in line to inherit the title of Earl of Wessex sometime in the future.

Mr Kay also suggested the Prince of Wales had been considering to make use of the title of Duke of Edinburgh himself but desisted once he was reassured the titles he already holds were senior to his late father’s.

He added: “All we know is the wish of the Queen, and it was the wish of Prince Philip, that Prince Edward should, in due course, inherit the title.

“The nuts and bolts of this are quite simple – on Philip’s death, all his titles passed to his oldest son Prince Charles. Charles already has a Scottish title.

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“He’s the Duke of Rothesay, he uses that title whenever he is north of the border.

“It appears he’s been talking to people about using the Edinburgh title but he was assured the Rothesay title was senior to the Edinburgh title.”

In a statement released ahead of Prince Edward’s wedding to Sophie Rhys-Jones in 1999, the Queen and Prince Philip said their youngest son would not receive a dukedom as his brothers had as he would someday become the Duke of Edinburgh.

They said: “The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, and the Prince of Wales have also agreed that the Prince Edward should be given the Dukedom of Edinburgh in due course when the present title held now by Prince Philip eventually reverts to the Crown.”

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The Duke of Edinburgh title was created for the third time on the occasion of the marriage between the then-Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip of Denmark and Greece.

In order to marry the eldest daughter of the king of England, Prince Philip had to renounce his foreign titles and was introduced into the peerage of Scotland shortly before the wedding.

The late Duke of Edinburgh brought the title to fame with his international Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme.

Prince Edward took over the leadership of the award a couple of years before Prince Philip retired from public duty in 2017.

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