Prince Philip ‘reluctant’ to celebrate 100th with ‘no desire’ to reach milestone

Prince Philip is reportedly "reluctant" to celebrate his 100th birthday, a milestone he once expressed dread about reaching.

The Duke of Edinburgh will turn a century old on June 10 next year, and Buckingham Palace staff are understood to be torn on how to mark the occasion.

"Let's just say we have a rather reluctant celebrant," one palace aide told the Telegraph.

"You can't do something if someone doesn't want something doing."

Philip may have retired from royal duties in 2017, but his birthday is certain to be a matter of national interest.

But the Duke is reportedly relishing the ability to lead a quiet life after almost seven decades in the public eye and has no interest in returning to the spotlight for his big day.

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The aide says those tasked with organising the celebration may well get "short shrift" from the birthday boy.

"He's retired, he's stepped back, he doesn't want the fuss," they said.

"You can't blame him."

Philip has been hinting at his desire to skip a big do for almost 20 years. When he was a sprightly 80 years old, he told media he had "no desire whatsoever" to reach 100.

"I can't imagine anything worse," he said at the time.

"Bits of me are falling off already."

He'll be the first male member of the Royal Family to live to 100, as well as the first royal consort to do so.

Nothing's been confirmed yet, but a commemorative photography exhibition curated by the Royal Collection Trust during its annual summer opening of Buckingham Palace could be in the works for the big day.

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  • Amusingly the Duke will also receive a congratulatory telegram from his wife just like all other British citizens who turn 100.

    Depending on what kind of coronavirus restrictions are still in place by the summer, senior royals will likely gather for a private party of some kind.

    Prince Harry may even step back into the fold to celebrate his grandfather's birthday, with the Telegraph reporting he and wife Meghan hope to fly back from California to attend.

    Philip's 100th will coincide with Harry's Invictus Games, scheduled to begin in the Hague at the end of May.

    After spending three years living in peace at Wood Farm on the Sandringham Estate, the retired Duke moved back into Windsor Castle in March as the UK went into lockdown amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    He is considered extremely vulnerable to Covid-19 due to his advanced age and a number of illnesses he's battled in recent years.

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