Prince Edward, Duke of Kent

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Prince Edward
Duke of Kent (more)
HRH The Duke of Kent 5 Allan Warrenjpg.jpg
Edward in 1989, by Allan Warren
Born (1935-10-09) 9 October 1935 (age 82)
3 Belgrave Square, London, United Kingdom
Spouse Katharine Worsley (m. 1961)
Full name
Edward George Nicholas Paul Patrick[notes 1]
House Windsor
Father Prince George, Duke of Kent
Mother Princess Marina of Greece and Denmark
Military career
Allegiance  United Kingdom
Years of service 1955–1976 (end of active service)
Rank Field Marshal
Service number 443787
Unit Royal Scots Greys

Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, KG, GCMG, GCVO, ADC(P) (Edward George Nicholas Paul Patrick; born 9 October 1935) is a grandson of King George V and Queen Mary. He has held the title of Duke of Kent for over 75 years, following the death of his father in a plane crash in 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 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.

Since his mother was a cousin of Prince Philip, he is also a second cousin to Prince Charles and his siblings.

Early life and education[edit]

Prince Edward was born on 9 October 1935, at No. 3 Belgrave Square, London.[1] Home Secretary Sir John Simon was present to verify the birth. Prince Edward'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, the daughter of Prince Nicholas of Greece and Denmark, and Grand Duchess Elena Vladimirovna of Russia. He was baptised in the Private Chapel of Buckingham Palace on 20 November 1935 by the Archbishop of Canterbury Cosmo Lang.[notes 2]

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. Prince Edward speaks fluent French, having been raised in a house where, according to the words of his younger brother Prince Michael of Kent his mother and aunts spoke French as a matter of preference.[3]

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 seven, succeeded his father as Duke of Kent,[4] 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 sixteen, he walked behind the coffin of his uncle, George VI, at his state funeral in 1952, which also was the first time he saw his uncle, the former Edward VIII, who left the country after having abdicated when the young prince was just twelve months old. In 1953, he attended the coronation of his cousin, Elizabeth II, paying homage at her throne after her coronation (following the Dukes of Edinburgh and Gloucester).

Military service[edit]

The Duke of Kent graduated from the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst on 29 July 1955 as a Second Lieutenant in the Royal Scots Greys,[5] the beginning of a military career that would last over 20 years. He was promoted to captain on 29 July 1961.[6] 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.[7] 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 parts of the divided 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.[8] The Duke retired from the Army on 15 April 1976.[9] He was subsequently promoted Major-General on 11 June 1983[10] and Field Marshal on 11 June 1993.[11]

Marriage and personal life[edit]

The Duke and Duchess of Kent on the balcony of Buckingham Palace at the 2013 Trooping the Colour
Combined coat of arms of Edward and Katharine, the Duke and Duchess of Kent

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. They have three living children:

His wife converted to Catholicism in 1994.[13] 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 applied where the spouse was a Catholic at the time of marriage.

The couple's son, Nicholas, also converted to Catholicism and he is excluded from the line of succession in accordance with the Succession to the Crown Act 2013.

The Duke and Duchess of Kent reside at Wren House, Kensington Palace, in London.[14]

The Duke had a mild stroke on the morning of 18 March 2013.[13]


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, formerly known as the British Overseas Trade Board, 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. Prince Andrew, Duke of York succeeded him in this position, which is today known as UK Trade & Investment (or UKTI), although Prince Andrew resigned from the post in 2011.[15]

From 1971 to 2000, the Duke of Kent was president of English football's governing body, The Football Association.

He also serves as the president of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, a position in which he succeeded 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, the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), the Royal Institution, and patron of St Mungo's Broadway, benefiting the homeless. He is also on the advisory panel for the Mountbatten Medal and presents the medal once the decision has been made.

For almost 29 years, the Duke has been the patron of Endeavour, a national youth organisation. He has also served as Royal Patron of The Honourable Society of Lincoln's Inn since 2001, a position previously occupied by his father.


On 16 December 1963, at the age of 28, the Duke was initiated into Royal Alpha Lodge No. 16 and into Freemasonry.[16] 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.[17] In December 2013, he celebrated 50 years as a freemason.[16]


The Duke has served as the President of The Scout Association since 1975.[18] Along with Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, the Duke visited the Centenary World Scout Jamboree at Hylands Park, Chelmsford in July 2007.[19]

Titles, styles, honours and arms[edit]

Titles and styles[edit]

  • 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.

Military ranks[edit]


Foreign honours



Military appointments[edit]

Canada Canada
United Kingdom United Kingdom



Name Birth Marriage Issue
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
Cassius Taylor
Eloise Taylor
Estella Taylor
Lord Nicholas Windsor 25 July 1970 4 November 2006 Paola Doimi de Lupis de Frankopan Albert Windsor
Leopold Windsor
Louis Windsor
Lord Patrick Windsor
5 October 1977 5 October 1977



  1. ^ As a British prince, a surname is not usually used but when one is, Windsor is used.
  2. ^ His godparents were King George V and Queen Mary (his paternal grandparents); the Prince of Wales (his paternal uncle); the Princess Royal (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).[2]


  1. ^ "No. 34206". The London Gazette. 9 October 1935. p. 6371. 
  2. ^ Yvonne's Royalty Home Page – Royal Christenings
  3. ^ Seward, Ingrid (1994). Royal Children. London: St. Martin's Press. ISBN 978-0312105334. 
  4. ^ "Duke of Kent, 77, suffers mini-stroke". Herald Scotland. 21 March 2013. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  5. ^ "No. 41137". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 July 1957. p. 4492. 
  6. ^ "No. 42422". The London Gazette (Supplement). 28 July 1961. p. 5561. 
  7. ^ "No. 44493". The London Gazette (Supplement). 2 January 1968. p. 75. 
  8. ^ "No. 46046". The London Gazette (Supplement). 7 August 1973. p. 9389. 
  9. ^ "No. 46877". The London Gazette (Supplement). 20 April 1976. p. 5659. 
  10. ^ a b "No. 49392". The London Gazette (Supplement). 21 June 1983. p. 8191. 
  11. ^ "No. 53342". The London Gazette (Supplement). 21 June 1993. p. 10183. 
  12. ^ "I lost my baby at nine months .. it devastated me; The Duchess of Kent reveals the stillbirth that led to a breakdown". The Mirror. 23 December 1997. Retrieved 26 March 2016. 
  13. ^ a b Rayner, Gordon (21 March 2013). "Duke of Kent being treated in hospital after 'mild' stroke". The Telegraph. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  14. ^ "Royal residences: Kensington Palace". Archived from the original on 26 July 2013. 
  15. ^ Raynor, Gordon. "Duke of York drops trade role after years of criticism". The Telegraph (UK). Retrieved 22 November 2017. 
  16. ^ a b "Grand Master celebrates 50 years in the Craft at Royal Alpha Lodge". Freemasonry Today. Grand Lodge Publications. Retrieved 21 April 2014. 
  17. ^ "HRH The Duke of Kent KG, GCMG, GCVO, ADC// Grand Master". UGLE. January 2014. 
  18. ^ "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. 
  19. ^ Adams, Stephen (28 July 2007). "A century on, Scouts' campfires burn strong". The Telegraph. Retrieved 10 November 2015. 
  20. ^ "No. 40593". The London Gazette (Supplement). 27 September 1955. p. 5427. 
  21. ^ "No. 41137". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 July 1957. p. 4492. 
  22. ^ "No. 42422". The London Gazette (Supplement). 28 July 1961. p. 5561. 
  23. ^ "No. 44493". The London Gazette (Supplement). 2 January 1968. p. 75. 
  24. ^ "No. 46046". The London Gazette (Supplement). 7 August 1973. p. 9389. 
  25. ^ "No. 46877". The London Gazette (Supplement). 20 April 1976. p. 5659. 
  26. ^ "No. 53342". The London Gazette (Supplement). 15 June 1993. p. 10183. 
  27. ^ "Svenska Frimurare Orden". Archive. 25 June 2001. Archived from the original on 25 June 2001. Retrieved 21 March 2013. 
  28. ^ Duke of Kent awarded Saxonian Order of Merit
  29. ^
  30. ^ "No. 47235". The London Gazette (Supplement). 11 June 1977. p. 7119. 
  31. ^ "No. 53555". The London Gazette (Supplement). 25 January 1994. p. 1087. 
  32. ^ "No. 53267". The London Gazette (Supplement). 6 April 1993. p. 6179. 
  33. ^ "No. 50204". The London Gazette (Supplement). 23 July 1985. p. 10113. 
  34. ^ "No. 54453". The London Gazette. 1 July 1996. p. 8917. 

External links[edit]

Prince Edward, Duke of Kent
Born: 9 October 1935
Lines of succession
Preceded by
Rufus Gilman
Succession to the British throne
son of George, son of George V
Followed by
Earl of St Andrews
Peerage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
The Prince George
Duke of Kent
2nd creation
25 August 1942 – present
George Windsor, Earl of St Andrews
Orders of precedence in the United Kingdom
Preceded by
The Duke of Gloucester
The Duke of Kent
Succeeded by
Prince Michael of Kent
Masonic offices
Preceded by
The Earl of Scarbrough
Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England
Honorary titles
Preceded by
The Earl Alexander of Tunis
Grand Master of the Order of St Michael and St George
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent
President of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club
Preceded by
The Earl of Harewood
President of The Football Association
Succeeded by
The Duke of York