Prince Phillip driving a car

Prince Philip voluntarily gives up his driving licence

It follows the incident at Sandringham last month

Hollie Richardson

The Duke of Edinburgh, 97, is to voluntarily surrender his driving licence. Buckingham Palace made the announcement on Saturday evening, saying: "After careful consideration The Duke of Edinburgh has taken the decision to voluntarily surrender his driving licence." It follows the incident involving the Prince on January 17, when the Land Rover Freelander he was driving collided with another vehicle on the Sandringham Estate. This sparked much debate, as a passenger in the other car suffered an injury as a result.

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Philip sent out a letter earlier this week, thanking fans for their well wishes following the crash. The Queen's husband said he was "grateful" for the messages and that the accident, which is still under investigation, was "a shock for all concerned". The letter was written and signed by Philip's correspondence secretary, Suzy Lethbridge, and began: "The Duke of Edinburgh thanks you for your kind message of good wishes following the recent accident near Sandringham." It continued: "It was a shock for all concerned. The Norfolk emergency services were quick to respond and assist those involved. Prince Philip is grateful to you for taking the trouble to write."

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According to the Daily Mirror, the father-of-four also wrote to the injured party, Emma Fairweather, which read: "I would like you to know how very sorry I am for my part in the accident at the Babingley cross-roads... The sun was shining low over the main road. In normal conditions I would have no difficulty in seeing traffic coming from the Dersingham direction, but I can only imagine that I failed to see the car coming, and I am very contrite about the consequences. I was somewhat shaken after the accident, but I was greatly relieved that none of you were seriously injured.

"As a crowd was beginning to gather, I was advised to return to Sandringham House by a local police officer. I have since learned that you suffered a broken arm. I am deeply sorry about this injury. I wish you a speedy recovery from a very distressing experience. The Duke then personally signing the letter 'Philip'.

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