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Prince Edward's life in photos as he celebrates 60th birthday

The Duke of Edinburgh was born on 10 March 1964

Prince Edward as a baby, at 21 and now
Danielle Stacey
Online Royal CorrespondentLondon
10 March 2024
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The Duke of Edinburgh celebrated a milestone birthday on Sunday as he turned 60.

Prince Edward, who is the youngest child of the late Queen Elizabeth and the late Prince Philip, is happily married to his wife of nearly 25 years, Sophie.

The couple are proud parents to Lady Louise Windsor and James, Earl of Wessex and the family reside at Bagshot Park in Surrey.

He carries out hundreds of engagements every year to support his brother, King Charles, and the monarchy.

With interests in the arts and sport, Edward has displayed his sense of humour through his unique approach to plaque unveiling and cake cutting during his public outings.

And in 2023 on his 59th birthday, he was finally given his father Philip's former title, the Duke of Edinburgh, in line with his late parents' wishes.

Take a look back at Edward's life in photos…

Baby Prince Edward with Prince Andrew and the Queen in 1964© Getty

Prince Edward is born, 1964

Prince Edward Antony Richard Louis was born on 10 March 1964 at Buckingham Palace as the third son and youngest child of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip. 

Baby Edward is pictured here at around four months old with his proud mother and big brother Prince Andrew. 

Baby Prince Edward with Queen Elizabeth on her 39th birthday© Getty

Aged one in 1965

Edward was doted on by his older siblings in his early years. The Queen celebrated her 39th birthday in Windsor shortly after Edward's first birthday. 

Prince Edward's First Day of School at Gibbs School, Kensington© Getty

First day at nursery, 1968

Edward arriving for his first day at Gibbs School (later Collingham College) in Kensington with his nanny, Mabel Anderson. 

Prince Edward on first day at  Heatherdown Preparatory School near Ascot with Prince Andrew and the Queen© Getty

First day at school, 1972

Edward later joined his brother Andrew at Heatherdown Preparatory School near Ascot. 

Prince Edward wearing a kilted at Gordonstoun school with Queen Elizabeth II© Getty

Gordonstoun, 1982

Edward followed in his father and elder brothers' footsteps by attending Gordonstoun in Scotland, where he was made head boy in his final term. 

Prince Edward teaching PE in New Zealand during his gap year© Getty

Gap year, 1982

The Prince spent his gap year in Wanganui, New Zealand where he spent two terms as a junior master at the Wanganui Collegiate School. 

Prince Edward on his 21st birthday at Cambridge University© Getty

University, 1985

Edward is pictured on his 21st birthday outside Cambridge University. He studied History at Jesus College, graduating with a 2:2 in 1986. 

UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL 06:  Prince Edward In Royal Marines Uniform At Raf Benson Awaiting The Queen's Arrival .  (Photo by Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty Images)© Getty

Royal Marines

After graduating from university, Edward joined the Royal Marines. However in 1987, he dropped out of the commando course with Buckingham Palace saying at the time that the Prince's decision came after "much consideration". The palace added Edward was leaving with regret "but has concluded that he does not wish to make the service his long-term career".

Prince Edward Starts Work At Ardent Television© Getty

Edward sets up Ardent Productions, 1993

After dropping out of military training, Edward pursued a career in entertainment, later working as a production assistant on musicals including The Phantom of the Opera, Starlight Express and Cats. He's pictured on his first day at Ardent Productions, a company he founded in 1993.

Edward and Sophie at  Lord Ivar Mountbatten's wedding in 1994© Getty

Meeting Sophie Rhys Jones, 1993

Edward first met PR consultant Sophie during a promotion shoot for the Prince Edward Summer Challenge to raise money for charity in 1993. The pair's friendship blossomed into romance. 

Edward and Sophie at engagement photocall© Getty

Engagement, 1999

After months of speculation, Edward proposed to long-term girlfriend Sophie while on holiday in the Bahamas in December 1998. 

Their engagement was announced by the palace on 6 January 1999 and the couple stepped out for a press photocall in the grounds of St James's Palace. 

The future Countess, then 33, said: "I think we share a number of interests, we laugh a lot and we have a great friendship." 

Edward also agreed and later in the interview said: "We are the very best of friends and that's essential but it also helps that we also love each other very much."

Prince Edward and Sophie on their wedding day© Pool/Tim Graham Picture Library

Wedding day, 1999

Edward and Sophie tied the knot at St George's Chapel in Windsor on 19 June 1999 in a low-key ceremony with no ceremonial or military involvement. 

Just hours before the wedding, Queen Elizabeth II made Edward the Earl of Wessex, which meant that Sophie then became the Countess of Wessex.

Bride Sophie looked beautiful in a long-sleeve wedding dress designed by Samantha Shaw and borrowed the 'Anthemion' tiara from her mother-in-law, the Queen.

Edward chose to make a statement with his wedding attire, accessorising his morning suit with a cat-printed tie.  

Edward and Sophie in 2002© Getty

The Wessexes become full-time working royals, 2002

Edward stepped back from his production company and Sophie gave up her PR career in 2002 to become full-time working royals. 

Countess of Wessex leaves hospital with baby Lady Louise Windsor in 2003© Getty

Lady Louise Windsor's birth, 2003

The Earl and Countess became parents with the birth of their first child. Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor was born prematurely on 8 November 2003 by an emergency C-section at Frimley Park Hospital in Surrey. 

Lady Louise was transferred to a neo-natal unit in St George's Hospital, Tooting, London for specialist care while mum Sophie was cared for at Frimley Park. 

Mum and baby were discharged from hospital on 23 November 2003, with Lady Louise's name announced four days later. 

Edward and Sophie with newborn son James© Getty

James, Viscount Severn is born, 2007

Edward and Sophie's son James, Viscount Severn was born on 17 December 2007 at Frimley Park hospital. In March 2022, he took over his father's former title to become James, Earl of Wessex. 

Edward, Sophie, Lady Louise Windsor and Kate Middleton cheering at the London 2012 Paralympics© Getty

London 2012 Paralympics

Edward and Sophie are both huge sports fans, and they were among the royals, along with daughter Lady Louise Windsor and then Duchess of Cambridge to watch the action at the London 2012 Paralympics. 

The Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh standing with their children on a beach© Pool

Rare family engagement, 2020

While the Duke and Duchess are full-time working royals, their children are expected to carve out their own careers, with Lady Louise currently studying at St Andrews University.

However, the youngsters joined their parents for an official engagement in September 2020 as they went litter picking in Southsea. 

A photo of Sophie Wessex and Prince Edward smiling © Pool

New royal titles, 2023

On his 59th birthday in March 2023, King Charles made his brother Edward and Sophie, the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh.

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