Ben Wallace – 2021 Statement Following Death of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh

The statement made by Ben Wallace, the Secretary of State for Defence, on 9 April 2021.

I join the Prime Minister in paying tribute to His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh at the time of his death. A constant supporter and ambassador of the Armed Forces throughout his lifetime, he will be very much missed by members of the military community.

As a Royal Navy officer, The Duke of Edinburgh upheld all values that the Armed Forces represent. His leadership, dedication and passion for serving his country is something that all those in uniform can relate to.  > It is only fitting that the Armed Forces will play such a high-profile role in the events to commemorate His Royal Highness’ life and lay him to rest. The Duke of Edinburgh had a long affiliation with the Royal Navy, having trained at Britannia Royal Naval College in Dartmouth before deploying onboard HMS Ramillies, HMS Kent and HMS Shropshire to serve his country during the Second World War.

Throughout his life The Duke of Edinburgh kept a close association with members of the Armed Forces of all ranks. Upon completing his Naval service in 1953, His Royal Highness continued to uphold the high standards and values of the Armed Forces through various military titles including Honorary Admiral of the Fleet, Captain General of the Royal Marines, Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Cadet Force and Air Commodore-in-Chief of the Air Training Corps.

As a former Officer in HM Armed Forces, I have seen for myself the impact of His Royal Highness’ role and work with our servicemen and women. His commitment and support to those on the frontline, and his interest in innovation for future generations of the Armed Forces was admirable.

All sailors, soldiers, marines and aircrew are inspired by the example set by their predecessors. The Duke of Edinburgh and his generation will forever be treasured by the Armed Forces for their leadership and sacrifice during the Second World War.

As we mourn The Duke of Edinburgh and offer our condolences to Her Majesty The Queen, we will remember all that His Royal Highness contributed towards the Armed Forces and be forever grateful for his service.