Today, on The Queen and Prince Philip’s 70th wedding anniversary, Her Majesty has given her husband one of the most personal gifts within her power: he has been made a Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order.
The appointment to the Royal Victorian Order is for personal service to the Monarch, which The Duke of Edinburgh has given for the last seven decades.
Created by Queen Victoria, the order of chivalry was instituted in 1896 to reward personal services rendered to the Sovereign. Conferment is solely at the discretion of the British sovereign, and so is seen as one of the most personal gifts, often handed out to long-serving secretaries and palace staff.
This means another star badge for Prince Philip to wear under his military medals. The order’s mantle is blue and red, as is the sash, holding the badge on the left hip; it is a Maltese cross with a red central medallion, depicting Queen Victoria’s Cypher. This is surrounded by a blue ring bearing the motto of the order, lastly surmounted by a Tudor crown
The Duke of Edinburgh joins the ranks of The Duke and Duchess of Kent, The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, Princess Alexandra, Prince Michael of Kent, The Earl and Countess of Wessex, The Duke of York, and The Duchess of Cornwall as a senior member (Knight or Dame Grand Cross) of the order.
Philip is already Grand Master and First and Principal Knight Grand Cross of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, a Knight of the Garter, a Knight of the Thistle, a Privy Counsellor and Aide-de-Camp to Her Majesty.
The Queen’s Chapel of the Savoy is the chapel of the Royal Victorian Order, however, it has grown so large that nowSt. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle is used for their service. The order’s day is 20th June and ‘Victoria’ is their simple motto.
The ‘platinum’ couple will celebrate with a dinner at Windsor Castle this evening, with their extended family and close friends. It is estimated there will be 150 guests including foreign Royalty.