Prince Philip to make public engagement as he hands over a key role

·Royal Correspondent
·2-min read
The Duke of Edinburgh attends the Captain General's Parade at his final individual public engagement, at Buckingham Palace in London.
Philip at the Captain General's Parade, his final individual public engagement, at Buckingham Palace in London in 2017. (PA Images)

Prince Philip is to make a rare public appearance as he carries out an engagement despite being retired.

The Duke of Edinburgh will take part in a ceremony at Windsor Castle on Wednesday when he hands over his role of Colonel-in-Chief of the The Rifles, passing it on to Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall.

As Camilla and the duke are in different places, the ceremony will take place across two homes, starting in Windsor and then transferring to Highgrove House, where she is now living having moved back from Scotland.

The duke, 99, will arrive to the sound of four buglers, and the Assistant Colonel Commandant, Major General Tom Copinger-Symes, will salute him to thank him for 67 years of service The Rifles, and their forming and antecedent Regiments.

The Rifles has only existed in its current form since 2007, but Philip was Colonel-in-Chief of successive Regiments which now make up The Rifles, a role he took up in 1953.

The Duchess of Cornwall, 73, took on the role of Royal Colonel of The Rifles in 2007.

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Following the salute on Wednesday, the buglers will play the No More Parades call, which marks Philip’s final ceremony.

As that happens, the ceremony will transfer to Highgrove House, the residence of the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall in Tetbury, Gloucestershire.

There, the duchess will be welcomed by four buglers, and by The Rifles’ Colonel Commandant, General Sir Patrick Sanders.

She will meet the buglers and a small party from 4th Battalion The Rifles, and then have an audience with Gen Sanders.

Camilla will continue to be the Royal Colonel as well as Colonel-in-Chief.

Read more: Prince Philip thanks scientists working on COVID-19 vaccine

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Philip was able to attend his granddaughter's wedding. (Benjamin Wheeler/PA Wire)

Since retiring in 2017, Philip has spent most of his time living on the Sandringham Estate, the royal’s private home in Norfolk.

He has continued to be represented at events by others, but rarely carries out his own duties now. He issued a rare statement during the coronavirus pandemic to thank scientists working on a vaccine.

He was also able to attend the wedding of his granddaughter, Princess Beatrice, to Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi which took place in Windsor on Friday.

One of his engagements since his retirement involved The Rifles, as he met former commandant General Sir Nicholas Carter and new commandant General Sanders in June last year, at Windsor Castle.

The Rifles currently has battalions on deployment in Afghanistan, the Middle East, Estonia, Cyprus and working on the UK’s COVID-19 response.

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