Prince Philip in cockpit Oct 2014
Prince Philip

How Prince Philip Has Earned The Respect Of The British Military

Although the Duke of Edinburgh ended his active naval career in July 1951, he has spent the years since closely connected to the military.

Prince Philip in cockpit Oct 2014

The Duke of Edinburgh, the longest-serving consort in British history, is celebrating his 99th birthday today.

As well as an active military career of his own, which came to an end in 1951, Prince Philip has maintained an association with the Armed Forces in the decades since.

Where did Prince Philip's association with the military begin?

:: June 10 1921 - Prince Philippos of Greece and Denmark is born to Prince Andrew of Greece and Princess Alice of Battenberg in the family home, Mon Repos, on Corfu. He is the youngest of five children.

:: December 1922 - Eighteen-month-old Prince Philip, travelling in a makeshift cot made from an orange box, is evacuated from Greece on a Royal Navy ship after King Constantine I is forced to abdicate.

:: 1928 - At the age of eight Philip travels to England to live with his grandmother and his uncle.

:: 1930 - Philip's mother Princess Alice is diagnosed with schizophrenia and committed to a sanatorium in Switzerland for two years. His father Prince Andrew heads to the French Riviera. Philip is sent to Cheam Preparatory School in the UK.

Prince Philip Royal Navy officer
Prince Philip served in the Royal Navy (Picture: PA).

:: May 1939 - In the run-up to the start of the Second World War, Philip finishes at Gordonstoun and begins his naval career at the Britannia Royal Naval College in Dartmouth, where he wins two prizes for being the best cadet.

:: July 1939 - A young Princess Elizabeth falls in love with Philip when he escorts her and her sister Princess Margaret during a tour of the college.

:: 1940 - Philip joins the battleship HMS Ramillies in 1940 in Colombo as a midshipman and spends six months in the Indian Ocean.

:: January 1941 - He serves on the HMS Valiant in Alexandria and two months later is mentioned in despatches for his actions during the Second World War in the Battle of Matapan after spotting an unexpected enemy vessel with the search lights. He is later awarded the Greek War Cross of Valour.

Duke of Edinburgh Captain General's Parade final public engagement
The Duke of Edinburgh on his last solo royal engagement in 2017 (Picture: PA)

:: 1942 - Philip rises through the ranks and becomes one of the youngest officers in the Royal Navy to be made First Lieutenant and second-in-command of a ship - HMS Wallace.

:: 1943 - HMS Wallace is despatched to the Mediterranean and provides cover for the Canadian beachhead of the Allied landings in Sicily.

:: February 1944 - Philip is appointed First Lieutenant and second in command of the new Fleet Destroyer HMS Whelp, which sails to the Indian Ocean to join the British Pacific Fleet.

:: 1946 - Philip returns to the UK, spending time at naval training schools. He asks George VI for Princess Elizabeth's hand in marriage.

:: February 29 1947 - Philip renounces his rights to the Greek throne and becomes a British subject - Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten.

:: November 20 1947 - Philip marries Princess Elizabeth at Westminster Abbey. He is made the Duke of Edinburgh, Earl of Merioneth and Baron Greenwich shortly before his wedding. After that he sought to find a role of his own in British society. As royal consort, his activities could not have any political connotations.

Duke of Edinburgh In Uniform

:: October 1948 - The Duke attends the Royal Naval Staff College at Greenwich.

:: 1949 - Philip is appointed First Lieutenant and second-in-command of HMS Chequers, operating from Malta with the Mediterranean fleet.

:: 1950 - He is promoted to Lieutenant-Commander and then appointed in command of the frigate HMS Magpie in Malta.

:: 1951 - The Duke and Princess Elizabeth return home from Malta to Clarence House. Philip leaves the Navy prematurely because of the deteriorating health of King George VI and Princess Elizabeth is required to take on more royal responsibilities.

:: 1951 - Princess Elizabeth and Philip make their first major tour together to Canada and the United States in October and November 1951, after which the Duke is made a Privy Counsellor.

:: 1952 - The Duke is appointed Admiral of the Sea Cadet Corps, Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Cadet Force and Air Commodore-in-Chief of the Air Training Corps.

:: June 1952 - Prince Philip is promoted to the rank of commander in the Royal Navy.

:: 1953 - He is promoted to Admiral of the Fleet and appointed a British Army Field Marshal and Marshal of the Royal Air Force.

Duke of Edinburgh

:: June 2 1953 - The Queen's Coronation at Westminster Abbey. The Duke of Edinburgh swore to be his wife's ''liege man of life and limb'' and was the first layman to pay tender homage to the newly crowned monarch.

:: 1956 - The Duke launches the Duke of Edinburgh's Award, a youth awards programme inspiring teenagers to challenge themselves physically and mentally and build their confidence through non-academic activities. The Duke tours the Commonwealth on the royal yacht Britannia, without the Queen.

:: February 1957 - The Queen gives the Duke the style and title of a Prince of the United Kingdom.

:: May 1961 - Keen to publicise youth apprenticeships, Prince Philip became the first member of the Royal Family to be interviewed on television.

:: June 2011 - The Duke celebrates his 90th birthday. The Queen gives him a new title - Lord High Admiral, titular head of the Royal Navy.

:: May 4 2017 - Buckingham Palace announces that Philip is to step down from public duties.

:: August 2 2017 -Prince Philip conducts his final solo royal engagement - an event with Royal Marines.

:: December 19 2017 - Prince Harry is formally appointed as Captain General Royal Marines, succeeding his grandfather the Duke of Edinburgh.

Cover image: The Duke in the cockpit of an Apache helicopter in October 2014 (Picture: Crown Copyright).