Queen returns to Windsor Castle for Platinum Jubilee
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The Queen is celebrating her record-breaking reign during this week’s extended bank holiday weekend. The events organised are set to fully focus on Her Majesty, her life-long commitment to the Crown and duty and her reign.
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However, one royal commentator said royal watchers should also expect to see a tribute to be paid to the monarch’s closest confidant and advisor – Prince Philip.
Asked if the late Duke of Edinburgh would be featured in any way during the Jubilee celebrations, Martin Townsend, senior specialist partner at Pagefield communication, told Express.co.uk: “I am sure there will be something, definitely.
“And quite rightly so, because he was there until very recently, he was at her side during all the other Jubilee celebrations and clearly she misses him.
“The Queen is the figurehead and she is the point of focus for people, but yes of course the Duke and other people in her life have been important for the country over the years.”
However, he stressed he believes the Jubilee will focused on the sovereign, whose reign he described as “extraordinary”.
He said: “I still think the focus is going to be on the Queen, it has to be.”
Throughout the Queen’s record-breaking reign, the Duke of Edinburgh has focused his efforts on serving the country, supporting the Crown and helping his wife.
Prince Philip and the Queen married in November 1947, when the Duke was a promising Navy officer.
However, the untimely death of King George VI in February 1952 brought the Duke to abandon his career and fully commit to royal duties.
Throughout the years, he carved out a role for himself as prince consort through patronages and his duties.
He also effectively became the Queen’s closest advisor, who could help her bear the weight of her sacred role.
Philip was by her side during all her milestones and the past Jubilee celebrations, and even braced the unforgiving rain and wind aged 90 during the 2012 Jubilee’s Thames River Pageant.
The Diamond Jubilee was partially marred by his hospitalisation for a bladder infection, which forced him to miss some of the planned engagements.
While the Queen and the Duke refrained from showing affection to one another in public, Her Majesty made an exception in 1997, as she delivered a speech at London Guildhall to mark her Golden Wedding anniversary.
Then, she famously described the Duke as her “strength and stay”, saying: “He is someone who doesn’t take easily to compliments but he has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years, and I, and his whole family, and this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim, or we shall ever know.”
Prince Philip retired from royal duties in August 2017, after having completed 22,219 solo engagements and an array of joint visits and duties with the Queen and other family members.
Despite his retirement, the royal carried out a few engagements during his last years, including attending a ceremony where in the Quadrangle at Windsor Castle in July 2020 during which he passed on to the Duchess of Cornwall the honorary title of Colonel of the Rifles.
The Duke spent most of his retirement years at Wood Farm, a five-bedroom cottage in Sandringham.
However, ahead of the first national lockdown, he flew to Windsor Castle to stay with the Queen.
The two elderly royals remained together through most of the pandemic, with Philip staying by himself in Norfolk only for a handful of weeks in October 2020, prior to the enforcement of the second national lockdown.
The Duke died “peacefully” at the Queen’s Berkshire residence on April 9 last year.
As his death happened in the midst of the third national lockdown, only 30 people, his closest relatives, could attend his funeral.
The extended Royal Family, as well as political leaders, foreign sovereigns and charity representatives were able to pay their tribute to the Duke’s life and work almost one year later, with a service of thanksgiving held at Westminster Abbey in March.
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