Prince Edward, Duke of Kent
|Duke of Kent (more)|
9 October 1935 |
3 Belgrave Square, London
|Spouse||Katharine Worsley (m. 1961)|
|Issue||George Windsor, Earl of St Andrews
Lady Helen Taylor
Lord Nicholas Windsor
|Father||Prince George, Duke of Kent|
|Mother||Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent|
|Religion||Church of England|
|Royal Family of
the United Kingdom and the
other Commonwealth realms
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, KG, GCMG, GCVO, ADC(P) (Edward George Nicholas Paul Patrick; born 9 October 1935) is a grandchild of King George V and Queen Mary. He has held the title of Duke of Kent since 1942.
The Duke of Kent carries out engagements on behalf of his first cousin, Elizabeth II. He is perhaps best known as President of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, presenting the trophies to the Wimbledon champion and runner-up. He also served as the United Kingdom's Special Representative for International Trade and Investment, retiring in 2001. He is also the President of The Scout Association, the Royal United Services Institute, and the Royal Institution of Great Britain, and since 1967 Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England. The Duke of Kent is also Patron of the IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists) an independent road safety charity which specialises in training and advice for post-licence drivers and riders.
At the time of his birth, Prince Edward was seventh in the line of succession to the throne of his grandfather King George V, behind the Prince of Wales, the Duke of York, his cousins Elizabeth and Margaret, his uncle, the Duke of Gloucester, and his father. As of the birth of the Duke of Cambridge's second child, the Queen's fifth great-grandchild, on 2 May 2015, the Duke of Kent was 34th in line. As of the death of the 7th Earl of Harewood in 2011, he became the Queen's oldest living paternal cousin, although he is nine years younger than the Queen herself.
- 1 Early life and education
- 2 Military service
- 3 Marriage, issue, and personal life
- 4 Activities
- 5 Freemasonry
- 6 Scouting
- 7 Patronages
- 8 Titles, styles, honours and arms
- 9 Issue
- 10 Ancestry
- 11 Notes
- 12 References
- 13 Further reading
- 14 External links
Early life and education
Prince Edward was born on 9 October 1935, at No. 3 Belgrave Square, London. Home Secretary Sir John Simon was present to verify the birth. The prince's father was Prince George, Duke of Kent, the fourth son of George V and Mary of Teck. His mother was Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent (née Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark), the daughter of Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark, and Grand Duchess Yelena Vladimirovna of Russia. As a grandson of a British sovereign in the male line, he was styled as a Prince of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, His Royal Highness Prince Edward of Kent.
The Prince was baptised in the Private Chapel of Buckingham Palace on 20 November 1935 by the Archbishop of Canterbury Cosmo Lang. His godparents were King George V and Queen Mary (his paternal grandparents); the Prince of Wales (his paternal uncle); the Princess Royal, Countess of Harewood (his paternal aunt); the Duke of Connaught and Strathearn (his great-great-uncle, whose son, Prince Arthur of Connaught, stood proxy); the Duchess of Argyll (his great-great-aunt); and Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark (his maternal grandfather).
Prince Edward began his schooling at Ludgrove, a preparatory school in Berkshire, before going on to Eton College and then Le Rosey in Switzerland. After school he entered the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst where he won the Sir James Moncrieff Grierson prize for foreign languages.
On 25 August 1942, Prince Edward's father, the Duke of Kent, was killed when his plane crashed in bad weather in Caithness. Prince Edward, who was almost 7, succeeded his father as Duke of Kent, Earl of St Andrews and Baron Downpatrick. He later took his seat in the House of Lords in 1959.
As a member of the royal family, he began performing engagements at an early age. At the age of 16, he walked behind the coffin of his uncle, George VI, at his state funeral in 1952. In 1953, he attended the coronation of his cousin, Elizabeth II, paying homage at her throne after her crowning (following the Dukes of Edinburgh and Gloucester).
A 1989 photograph of the Duke of Kent,
by Allan Warren
|Years of service||1955–1976|
|Unit||Royal Scots Greys|
The Duke of Kent graduated from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst on 29 July 1955 as a Second Lieutenant in the Royal Scots Greys, the beginning of a military career that would last over 20 years. He was promoted to captain on 29 July 1961. The Duke of Kent saw service in Hong Kong from 1962–63 and later served on the staff in Eastern Command. He was promoted to Major on 31 December 1967. Later in 1970, the Duke commanded a squadron of his regiment serving in the British Sovereign Base Area in Cyprus, part of the UN force enforcing peace between the Greek and Turkish halves of the island. During the early 70s, the Duke also served in Northern Ireland with his Regiment. He was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel on 30 June 1973. The Duke retired from the Army on 15 April 1976. He was subsequently promoted Major-General on 11 June 1983 and Field Marshal on 11 June 1993.
Marriage, issue, and personal life
The Duke of Kent married Katharine Worsley at York Minster on 8 June 1961. Katharine is the only daughter of Sir William Arthrington Worsley, 4th Bt., and his wife, Joyce Morgan Brunner. After their wedding, she was styled Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Kent, . However she remains legally HRH The Duchess of Kent.
The Duke and Duchess of Kent have three living children:
- George, Earl of St Andrews, born 26 June 1962; married Sylvana Tomaselli
- Lady Helen Taylor, born 28 April 1964; married Timothy Taylor
- Lord Nicholas Windsor, born 25 July 1970; married, 2006, Paola Doimi de Lupis de Frankopan, in Vatican City, becoming the first British royal in history to do so
- stillborn son, born and died 5 October 1977
The Duchess of Kent converted to Catholicism in 1994. Because this conversion did not occur until many years after their marriage, it did not cause the Duke to lose his place in the line of succession, as the Act of Settlement 1701 only applies where the spouse is a Catholic at the time of marriage. After the Succession to the Crown Act 2013 came into effect on 26 March 2015, the issue of the Duchess's conversion became moot.
The couple's son, Lord Nicholas, also converted to Catholicism following his mother's example and he remains excluded from the line of succession in accordance with the Succession to the Crown Act 2013.
The Duke had a mild stroke on the morning of 18 March 2013.
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The Duke of Kent has performed engagements on behalf of his cousin, the Queen, for over 50 years. The Duke has represented the Queen during independence celebrations in the former British colonies of Sierra Leone, Uganda, Guyana, Gambia and most recently Ghana, for its 50th independence anniversary celebration. He has also acted as Counsellor of State during periods of the Queen's absence abroad.
One of the Duke's major public roles for many years was Vice-Chairman of British Trade International, and later as the United Kingdom's Special Representative for International Trade and Investment. This position saw the Duke travel abroad to represent the British government in fostering trade relations with foreign countries and organisations.
He also serves as the president of the Wimbledon All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, a position he succeeded from his late mother, Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent. His other roles include President of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, the RAF Benevolent Fund, the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, the Stroke Association, RUSI, the Royal Institution, and patron of St Mungo's Broadway, benefiting the homeless. He also makes the final decision in the award of the Mountbatten Medal.
For almost 29 years, the Duke has been the patron of Endeavour, a national youth organisation. He has also served as Royal Bencher of The Honourable Society of Lincoln's Inn since 2001, a position previously occupied by his father.
On 16 December 1963, the Duke was initiated into Royal Alpha Lodge No. 16 and into Freemasonry. He is the 10th Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England, the governing body of Freemasonry in England and Wales. He has served in that office since 1967, thus being the longest serving Grand Master. In December 2013, he celebrated 50 years as a freemason.
The Duke has served as the President of The Scout Association since 1975. Along with Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, the Duke visited the Centenary World Scout Jamboree at Hylands Park, Chelmsford in July 2007.
The Duke of Kent is patron of a number of organisations active in the fields of charity, health and the arts. These include:
- Freemasonry: Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England and First Grand Principal of the Supreme Grand Chapter of Royal Arch Masons of England
- Patron of the Royal Institution of Australia
- Patron of the Ski Club of Great Britain
- Patron of the British Computer Society, UK
- Patron of the British-German Association
- Patron of Restore Burn and Wound Research
- Patron of Trinity College of Music, London
- President of The Scout Association
- Patron of The Aidis Trust
- Patron of The Institute of Export
Titles, styles, honours and arms
Titles and styles
- 9 October 1935 – 25 August 1942: His Royal Highness Prince Edward of Kent
- 25 August 1942 – : His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent
The Duke's current full style is Field Marshal His Royal Highness Prince Edward George Nicholas Paul Patrick, Duke of Kent, Earl of Saint Andrews and Baron Downpatrick, Royal Knight of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, Grand Master and Knight Grand Cross of the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order, Personal Aide-de-Camp to Her Majesty.
- 29 July 1955 – 29 July 1957: Second Lieutenant, Royal Scots Greys
- 29 July 1957 – 29 July 1961: Lieutenant, Royal Scots Greys
- 29 July 1961 – 31 December 1967: Captain, Royal Scots Greys
- 31 December 1967 – 30 June 1973: Major, Royal Scots Greys
- 30 June 1973 – 15 April 1976: Lieutenant-Colonel, Royal Scots Greys. Retired on 15 April 1976
- 11 June 1983 – 10 June 1993 Major General
- 11 June 1993: Field Marshal
- 1960 Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order (GCVO)
- Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George (GCMG)
- 1985 Royal Knight of the Order of the Garter (KG)
- Canadian Forces' Decoration (with two clasps) (CD)
- 12 May 1937 King George VI Coronation Medal
- 2 June 1953 Queen Elizabeth II Coronation Medal, 1953
- 1961 Sierra Leone Independence Medal, 1961
- 1966 Guyana Independence Medal, 1966
- 1970 United Nations Medal for the UNFICYP mission, 1970
- 6 February 1977 Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Medal, 1977
- 6 February 2002 Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal, 2002
- 6 February 2012 Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, 2012
- 6 November 2000 Knight of the Order of Charles XIII
- Order of Saints George and Constantine First class (civil division)
- Grand Cordon of the Supreme Order of the Renaissance (special class)
- Grand Cordon of the Order of the Star of Jordan
- Grand Band of the Order of the Star of Africa
- Order of the Three Divine Powers First Class (Jyotirmaya-Subikhyat-Tri-Shakti-Patta)
- Grand Cross of the Order of St Olav
- Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Poland
- 21 May 2015 Order of Merit of the Free State of Saxony
- University of Surrey, Chancellor (January 1977 to date)
- Colonel-in-Chief, of The Lorne Scots (Peel, Dufferin and Halton Regiment) (11 June 1977 – present)
- Colonel, of the Scots Guards
- Colonel-in-Chief, of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers
- Colonel, 1st Battalion, of The Rifles
- Deputy Colonel-in-Chief, of the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards
- 1993 Honorary Air Commodore, of the RAF Leuchars
- 15 June 1985 – 30 June 1996: Honorary Air Vice Marshal RAF
- 1 July 1996: Honorary Air Chief Marshal RAF
|George Windsor, Earl of St Andrews||26 June 1962||9 January 1988||Sylvana Tomaselli||Edward Windsor, Lord Downpatrick
Lady Marina Charlotte Windsor
Lady Amelia Windsor
|Lady Helen Taylor||28 April 1964||18 July 1992||Timothy Taylor||Columbus Taylor
|Lord Nicholas Windsor||25 July 1970||4 November 2006||Paola Doimi de Lupis de Frankopan||Albert Windsor
- As a member of the royal family, Edward needs no surname, but, when one is used, it is Windsor.
- The London Gazette: . 9 October 1935. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
- Yvonne's Royalty Home Page – Royal Christenings
- "Duke of Kent, 77, suffers mini-stroke". Herald Scotland. 21 March 2013. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
- The London Gazette: . 30 July 1957. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 28 July 1961. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 2 January 1968. Retrieved 25 May 2011.
- The London Gazette: . 7 August 1973. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 20 April 1976. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 21 June 1983. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 21 June 1993. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- Rayner, Gordon (21 March 2013). "Duke of Kent being treated in hospital after 'mild’ stroke". The Telegraph. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
- "Royal residences: Kensington Palace". Archived from the original on 26 July 2013.
- "Grand Master celebrates 50 years in the Craft at Royal Alpha Lodge". Freemasonry Today. Grand Lodge Publications. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- "HRH The Duke of Kent KG, GCMG, GCVO, ADC// Grand Master". UGLE. January 2014.
- "Royal Support for the Scouting and Guiding Movements". Official Website of the British Monarchy. Archived from the original on 24 January 2009. Retrieved 25 July 2008.
- Adams, Stephen (28 July 2007). "A century on, Scouts' campfires burn strong". The Telegraph. Retrieved 10 November 2015.
- The London Gazette: . 27 September 1955. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
- The London Gazette: . 30 July 1957. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
- The London Gazette: . 28 July 1961. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
- The London Gazette: . 2 January 1968. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
- The London Gazette: . 7 August 1973. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
- The London Gazette: . 20 April 1976. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
- The London Gazette: . 15 June 1993. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- "Svenska Frimurare Orden". Archive. 25 June 2001. Archived from the original on 25 June 2001. Retrieved 21 March 2013.
- Duke of Kent awarded Saxonian Order of Merit
- The London Gazette: . 11 June 1977. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 25 January 1994. Retrieved 8 December 2010.
- The London Gazette: . 6 April 1993. Retrieved 1 July 2009.
- The London Gazette: . 23 July 1985. Retrieved 1 July 2009.
- The London Gazette: . 1 July 1996. Retrieved 1 July 2009.
- Lee, Celia and John. HRH The Duke of Kent - A Life of Service. (Seymour Books, 2016) ISBN 9781517220600
- Media related to Prince Edward, Duke of Kent at Wikimedia Commons
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by the Duke of Kent
- The Duke of Kent at the Royal Family website
- The United Grand Lodge of England – HRH The Duke of Kent, KG, GCMG, GCVO, ADC (Grand Master)
- Time Article on Birth of Prince Edward
Prince Edward, Duke of KentBorn: 9 October 1935
|Lines of succession|
|Line of succession to the British Throne
son of George, son of George V
Earl of St Andrews
|Peerage of the United Kingdom|
The Prince George
|Duke of Kent
25 August 1942 – present
George Windsor, Earl of St Andrews
|Orders of precedence in the United Kingdom|
The Duke of Gloucester
HRH The Duke of Kent
Prince Michael of Kent
The Earl of Scarbrough
|Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England
The Earl Alexander of Tunis
|Grand Master of the Order of St Michael and St George
Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent
|President of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club
The Earl of Harewood
|President of The Football Association
The Duke of York