PRINCE Edward is The Queen’s youngest child with Prince Philip and he currently sits 12th in line to the throne, thanks to the arrival of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s daughter Lilibet.
For fans of the Royal family, the Earl of Wessex, 57, may not be as well known as his brothers Prince Charles and Prince Andrew and his sister Princess Anne.
He is married to Sophie Rhys-Jones, the Countess of Wessex – they tied the knot back in 1999 and are parents to two children, Lady Louise Windsor and James Viscount Severn.
Edward and his family are often seen making appearances at Royal events and rubbing shoulders with their more famous family members, but what was life like for Prince Edward growing up?
We take a look back through the archives that show Prince Edward as a young boy and as a teen, before he headed off to join the Royal marines and make a name for himself in TV production.
Here’s everything you need to know:
1) When was Prince Edward born?
Edward is the youngest of The Queen’s four children and was born on 10 March in 1964 at Buckingham Palace. He is 16 years younger than his oldest brother Prince Charles.
It’s believed that Edward’s birth was the first that Prince Philip was there to witness – and the first Royal father in history to be at a birth – after The Queen had asked him to be there, according to boo My Husband and I: The Inside Story Of 70 Years Of Royal Marriage.
Two months after his birth, he was christened at Windsor Castle – The Queen’s private home and residence and where Prince Harry and wife Meghan Markle tied the knot in 2018.
2) What was Prince Edward like as a young child?
Growing up, it’s fair to say that Edward had a pretty unconventional childhood. It’s claimed he learnt how to ride a pony when he was just two years old and he was minded by a governess, just like his siblings.
His governess taught him early on at Buckingham Palace before he headed off to school.
By the time he was five, Edward had personally met Neil Armstrong – the first person to walk on the moon – and told him he too wanted to be an astronaut, according to The Sunday Post
Black and white photos show Edward always dressed in his Sunday best and enjoying family trips, hanging out with horses and helping to look after The Queen’s beloved corgis.
3) Where did Prince Edward go to school?
While his early years were spent being taught at Buckingham Palace, Edward then headed to Gibbs School in Kensington, before enrolling at Heatherdown School in 1972.
Following in the footsteps of his older brothers and dad Philip, Edward then moved to Gordonstoun – a boarding school in northern Scotland – where he later became head boy.
Prior to heading to university, Edward took a gap year to work abroad in New Zealand as a house tutor for two terms at a school.
He then attended Cambridge University and graduated from Jesus College with a history degree in 1986.
4) What jobs did Prince Edward do as a young man?
Straight out of university, Edward enlisted in the Royal Marines – he had been a university cadet for three years, but quit just three months into the military’s 12-month training program.
The Royal Marines allegedly paid £12,000 for Edward’s tuition fees on the condition that he served five years after he graduated.
Philip had been serving as the Captain General Royal Marines at the time and while some reports say he “reduced Edward to tears” after he decided to quit, others go against this and say Philip was actually the most “sympathetic”.
Following his time in the Royal Marines, Edward went on to pursue a career in theatre and television, and worked as a production assistant on musicals like The Phantom of the Opera and Cats for Andrew Lloyd-Webber.
In 1993, he created his own production company, Ardent Productions, to produce documentaries and dramas.
Nearly a decade later in 2002, Edward stepped down as the company’s director to become a full-time working Royal and carry out his duties for The Queen.
He has taken over a lot of the public duties his dad Philip – who died in April aged 99 – had and is heavily involved in the Duke Of Edinburgh Award, after getting a gold award himself growing up.
Since 2015, Edward has served as Chairman of the Trustees of the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award Foundation.
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