The Earl of Wessex turns 55 today, and has been granted another title by The Queen to mark the occasion. Prince Edward has received a second earldom being created the Earl of Forfar.
Forfar is the county town of Angus with a population of some 14,000. It is the main county town nearest to Glamis Castle, which was the childhood home of The Queen Mother, and therefore also the seat of the Earls of Strathmore and Kinghorne.
Interestingly, this title has long been extinct. Created in 1661, it was last used in 1715, as a subsidiary title to the Earl of Ormond, held by the Douglas Family.
The palace listed a number of Scottish affiliations of the Earl’s, hinting at recognition from The Queen for her son’s work north of the border. For example, in 2014 the Earl acted as Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, which is The Queen’s personal representative to the Assembly and a personal appointment.
He is also patron of The Edinburgh International Festival, the National Youth Orchestras of Scotland and Badminton Scotland.
It has long been expected that after the passing of The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh, when the title reverts to the Crown, Prince Charles (by this point King) will create his brother The Duke and Edinburgh, so that he may carry on the work of his father’s award scheme. Edward is already a trustee for The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and is heavily involved in the scheme, regularly visiting pupils participating and handing out awards.
This is Prince Edward’s third title. He was created Earl of Wessex and Viscount Severn upon his marriage, giving him an English and a Welsh title. This Forfar earldom gives him a third and a Scottish peerage.
Little will actually change for The Earl and Countess in reality; simply when they are in Scotland they will be known as The Earl and Countess of Forfar.