New exhibit to commemorate Prince Philip
A new exhibition at Windsor Castle will commemorate Prince Philip’s life and legacy and will include many items that have been gifted to him during his official duties and visits overseas.
The exhibit, titled ‘Prince Philip: A Celebration’, opens on Thursday, June 24 and features more than 100 items from his life.
After seven decades of involvement in the royal family, Philip passed away on April 9 aged 99.
The exhibition formed part of the 100th birthday celebrations planned for Philip, who would have turned 100 on June 10, curator Sally Goodsir told Reuters.
“But following his death in April, we have delayed its opening just by a couple of weeks and are still holding it,” she said.
Goodsir said Philip had been aware of both the exhibition and its contents.
The highlights of the display include the coronation robes and coronet Prince Philip wore to the Queen’s coronation in 1953, as well as his chair of estate which normally stands next to the Queen’s at Buckingham Palace - and will be on display at Windsor Castle for the first time.
The items range from personal mementos - including Queen Victoria’s journal recording the birth of Philip’s mother, Princess Alice, in 1885 - to more eccentric objects - such as a human-sized grasshopper wine cooler the former French President Georges Pompidou presented while visiting the UK in 1972.
Other items on display include: photographs of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in a Faberge frame that was a wedding gift; a chess set gifted from Nelson Mandela during his UK visit in 1996; and a pair of cowboy boots inscribed with the words ‘Prince’ and ‘Philip’ in gold, which the prince received during his 1991 visit to Houston, Texas.
The remains of Windsor Castle’s St George’s Hall clock and a fragment of a burnt beam - salvaged by Philip following a fire that swept through the castle in 1992 - will also be on display.
“I think without people being able to gather for the funeral, as they might ordinarily have done, I hope they might be able to come to the castle and learn a little bit more about him,” Goodsir said.
The public will be able to see the exhibition until September 20.