Suffolk people remember Prince Philip and the Duke of Edinburgh Awards

Prince Philip in Felixstowe

Prince Philip at the opening of the Coronation Sports Field in Felixstowe in 1956. - Credit: Archant

The sad news of the death of Prince Philip has sparked memories for many people from Suffolk who saw him during his many visits to the area - or whose lives had been touched by him in some way.

Helen Rose recalled the Duke of Edinburgh at the opening of the Coronation Sports Field in Felixstowe in May 1956. Her father was local teacher Norman Vanstone, keeping the time and kneeling in this picture.

Many of the memories sent to us were from people who had taken part in the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme - set up in the 1950s and which has seen millions of young people challenge themselves.

More: In pictures - The Duke of Edinburgh's visits to Suffolk and north Essex

One reader said: "I am a Gold Award holder of the Duke of Edinburgh award and was lucky enough at the palace in 1988 (aged 22), for him to choose me out of a circle of 25 others, to be asked about what I did for my residential week.

Prince Philip the Duke of Edinburgh at the opening of the new science building at the University of Hertfordshire in 2016.

The Duke of Edinburgh died on Friday, aged 99 - Credit: Danny Loo Photography

"He was so personable and genuinely seemed interested. A very proud day but sadly I still can't read a compass! RIP."

Another Gold Award winner said: "When I met the Duke of Edinburgh at Buckingham Palace to receive my Gold Duke of Edinburgh award . He had a lovely nature and just think how many people the DofE scheme has helped throughout the world. RIP HRH Prince Philip. Stephen."

Meanwhile, the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (DofE) is asking for the help of the 6.7 million people across the UK who have done their DofE in creating the first-ever nationwide collection of ‘DofE memories’ in tribute to HRH Prince Philip and to inspire even more young people to take part.

The charity is asking anyone who’s been involved in the DofE across the decades – from current participants and older alumni to the tens of thousands of people who help deliver the DofE across the UK every year - to go to DofE.org and share their experiences in celebration of The Duke’s legacy. 

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The stories will be used to inspire more young people to start creating their own memories with DofE. And the charity will present a physical copy to the Royal Collection, so the stories can be remembered forever.

Ruth Marvel, CEO of the DofE, said: “Nobody forgets their DofE – the connection with someone new while volunteering, the inedible meal you made around the campfire, the power at your fingertips as you learn to code. 

“The incredible legacy of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh has empowered millions across the UK. Nearly one in 10 people has taken part in a DofE Bronze Award[1]. We want to bring their stories together as a powerful tribute to HRH Prince Phillip and to inspire the next generation of young people to embark on their own DofE adventure.”


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