Duke of Edinburgh praises those tackling the coronavirus pandemic

The Duke of Edinburgh has made a rare public statement, praising those tackling the coronavirus pandemic across the UK and keeping essential services running.

Philip, 98, who retired from public duties in 2017, said he wanted to recognise the “vital and urgent” medical and scientific work taking place.

In his message, the duke also gave thanks to key workers including those involved in food production and distribution, refuse collection, and postal and delivery services.

The Queen and Philip
The Queen and Philip

In his message, published on the royal family’s social media channels, he said: “As we approach World Immunisation Week, I wanted to recognise the vital and urgent work being done by so many to tackle the pandemic; by those in the medical and scientific professions, at universities and research institutions, all united in working to protect us from Covid-19.

“On behalf of those of us who remain safe and at home, I also wanted to thank all key workers who ensure the infrastructure of our life continues; the staff and volunteers working in food production and distribution, those keeping postal and delivery services going, and those ensuring the rubbish continues to be collected.”

The Duke of Edinburgh has written a message to everyone who is helping to tackle the pandemic and keep essential services running. Read the message in full at: https://t.co/91oQHns3ZNpic.twitter.com/UNcomwRSWU

— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) April 20, 2020

The message was signed off with “Philip”.

The duke is affiliated to more than 750 organisations, including the scientific, technological research, healthcare and infrastructure sectors which have been responding to the outbreak.

Philip, who turns 99 in June, has been staying with the Queen at Windsor Castle with a reduced household for their safety.