World leaders pay tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh

BBC and Staff Reporter
London & Auckland, April 10, 2021

Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh

Political leaders, members of the public and well-wishers around the world have paid tribute to Prince Philip, Queen Elizabeth II’s husband, after his death at the age of 99.

A statement issued by Buckingham Palace just after midday spoke of the Queen’s “deep sorrow” following his death at Windsor Castle on Friday morning.

He was the longest-serving royal consort in British history.

Astonishing Achievement

Prince Charles said that his father’s life was an “astonishing achievement”.

Reflecting on Prince Philip’s life for a BBC Programme, Prince Charles said: “His energy was astonishing in supporting my mama [the Queen] – and doing it for such a long time, and, in some extraordinary way, being able to go on doing it for so long. What he has done has amounted to an astonishing achievement, I think,” he said.

Princess Anne said that the Duke “treated everyone as an individual and gave them the respect he felt they were due as individuals.”

Announcing the Duke’s death, the Palace said: “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband. The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss.”

It is understood that the Prince of Wales travelled to Windsor Castle to visit his mother on Friday afternoon.

Tribute: United Kingdom

Speaking at Downing Street, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson added that the Duke had “earned the affection of generations here in the United Kingdom, across the Commonwealth, and around the world.”

Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, said that “he consistently put the interests of others ahead of his own and, in so doing, provided an outstanding example of Christian service.”

In tribute to the Duke, Westminster Abbey tolled its tenor bell once every 60 seconds for 99 times from 18:00 BST – to honour each year of his life.

Earlier, the flag at Buckingham Palace was lowered to half-mast and a notice was posted on the gates to mark the Duke’s death.

People placed floral tributes outside the central London landmark, while hundreds visited Windsor Castle to pay their respects.

However, the government urged the public not to gather or leave tributes at royal residences amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Tribute: New Zealand

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern

Jacinda Ardern

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern today expressed New Zealand’s sorrow at the death of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

“Our thoughts are with Her Majesty The Queen at this profoundly sad time.  On behalf of the New Zealand people and the Government, I would like to express my sincere condolences to Her Majesty and to all the Royal Family,” she said.

Following is her full Statement:

Prince Philip will be fondly remembered for the encouragement he gave to so many young New Zealanders through The Duke of Edinburgh’s Hillary Award.  In over fifty years of The Award in New Zealand, thousands of young people have completed life-changing challenges through the programme. 

New Zealanders will also remember The Duke of Edinburgh’s enormous support for Her Majesty The Queen. His time as Royal Consort exceeded that of any other Royal Consort in British history.  His Royal Highness accompanied The Queen on her ten visits to New Zealand, the first being in 1953, and the last in 2002.

Honours and Appointments

The Duke of Edinburgh held a number of New Zealand honours and appointments. 

He was appointed an Additional Member of the Order of New Zealand on June 4, 2012 for services to New Zealand, to commemorate The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. 

He was appointed an Extra Companion of the Queen’s Service Order in 1981 (the QSO badge features prominently at the front of his extensive medal bar), and also received the New Zealand 1990 Commemoration Medal. 

He was made Admiral of the Fleet of the Royal New Zealand Navy during his solo visit to New Zealand in 1958 on the yacht Royal Britannia, and to commemorate the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977 he was made Field Marshal of the New Zealand Army, and Marshal of the Royal New Zealand Air Force.

Royal Patron

The Duke was a patron or member of over 780 organisations. 

His New Zealand connections included his role as patron of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, and the New Zealand Society (in the United Kingdom). 

He was a Life Member and gold badge award holder of the Royal New Zealand Returned and Services’ Association, and Life Member of Aviation New Zealand, and the Tin Hat Club. 

He was an honorary member of the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve Veterans’ Association, and the Wellington Club. Additionally, he was an Honorary Fellow of the New Zealand Institution of Professional Engineers, and the Royal New Zealand College of General Practitioners.  He was also involved with a number of Commonwealth Associations, such as the Royal Agricultural Society of the Commonwealth. 

I have directed that flags on all government buildings and naval vessels be flown at half-mast. The government is awaiting details from the Palace concerning the arrangements for The Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral. Following the funeral, a National Memorial Service will be held in Wellington.  More details will follow once arrangements have been confirmed.   

National Party Leader Judith Collins (RNZ Picture by Simon Rogers)

Judith Collins

Opposition Leader Judith Collins offered, “On behalf of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition in New Zealand,” condolences to Her Majesty the Queen and the Royal Family following the death of His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

“His dedication to the people of the Commonwealth through many decades of service and charitable endeavours was truly impressive. His legacy will live on for many more decades to come,” she said in a Statement.

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Bedi (PMO Photo)

Narendra Modi

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid tribute to Prince Philip who visited India (a former British Colony) four times.

“My thoughts are with the British people and the Royal Family on the passing away of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. He had a distinguished career in the military and was at the forefront of many community service initiatives. May his soul rest in peace,” he said in his Tweeter message.

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