Princess Anne and Prince Edward have paid tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh following his death, aged 99.
In interviews recorded for broadcast after the Duke of Edinburgh’s death, the Princess Royal and the Earl of Wessex reflected on their loving relationship with their father and the nation’s longest serving consort.
Paying tribute to His Royal Highness, they shared their personal childhood memories of the Duke and the Queen, the famed Duke of Edinburgh Award and their father’s lasting legacy.Reflecting on her father’s “nomadic” childhood, which saw him smuggled out of Corfu in an orange crate, to settling in Paris as a young child, Princess Anne said: “It must have been really quite difficult because he was that much younger than his sisters.
Princess Anne speaks to ITV News Royal Editor Chris Ship about her father, the Duke of Edinburgh
“The father figure was very intermittent then went and his mother struggled at that stage, so he had friends elsewhere who took him in during the holidays.
“He was virtually a refugee as this stage because he had nowhere else to go literally. And that probably why Gordonstoun had such an impact.”
It was his grounding at Gordonstoun School in Moray, Scotland, which fuelled Prince Philip‘s passion for sports and shaped his famed Duke of Edinburgh Award. His time at the boarding school inspired a love for extra-curriculum activities outside of academic studies.
The Duke of Edinburgh Award was born out of that love for non-academic endeavours, and in the hope it would encourage others to find activities they too were passionate about.
Prince Edward said: “The Duke of Edinburgh Award is probably among the best-known of the foundations in his name, and initially started by his former headmaster Kurt Hahn, who when it was rolled out beyond Gordonstoun came to my father and said ‘would you get involved in this.’
“My father got Lord Hunt involved in helping to shape how it would roll out and that was of course one of his geniuses, being able to find the right people to take things on and shape them.”
“The fact it has now spread to more than 140 countries, way beyond the Commonwealth, way beyond the English speaking world, is enormous testament to that original vision.”
Prince Edward reflects on childhood memories of his father, Prince Philip
Princess Anne added: “He believed there were things outside [of school] which were necessary to help you develop as an individual, which played to your strengths and if that weren’t academic there were other things that would be your strength.
“Both Princess Anne and Prince Edward reflected on the compassion of their father, and the loving relationship he shared with the Queen.”My parents have been such a fantastic support to each other during all those years and all those events and all those tours and events overseas,” said Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex.
“To have someone that you confide in and smile about things that you perhaps could not in public. To be able to share that is immensely important.”Princess Anne said: “Without him life will be completely different.
But from society’s perspective he was able to keep pace with the kind of technological changes that have such an impact… but above all that it’s not about the technology it’s about the people.”
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