10 things you might not know about the Duke of Edinburgh as he turns 95


The Duke of Edinburgh is celebrating his 95th birthday today. Here's 10 things you might not know about Philip:

1. A prince of Greece and Denmark, he was born on the dining room table at Mon Repos - his family's summer home in Corfu - on June 10 1921.

2. As an 18-month-old, he was carried in a cot made from an orange box as he was evacuated from Greece by the Royal Navy.

3. His surname was originally Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glucksburg - the family name of the Danish royal house from which his father was descended - but he swapped it for Mountbatten when he became a British subject before marrying Princess Elizabeth.

The Duke of Edinburgh visits St Paul's Church in Frankfurt (Chris Jackson/PA)
(Chris Jackson/PA)

4. His mother, Princess Alice, founded an order of nuns. In later years, she went to live at Buckingham Palace and was said to walk around the corridors in a nun's habit, smoking Woodbines.

5. Philip is the longest serving consort in British history - but has no interest in taking on the title Prince Consort like Queen Victoria's husband, Prince Albert.

6. He was the first member of the British Royal Family to be interviewed on television - by Richard Dimbleby in 1961.

7. The Duke is an enthusiastic "twitcher" - his interest in birdwatching came during lengthy voyages on the Royal Yacht Britannia in the 1950s when he became fascinated by the seabirds of the South Pacific and South Atlantic.

The Duke of Edinburgh attends a reception (Stefan Wermuth/PA)
(Stefan Wermuth/PA)

8. In 1985 he drove a coach-and-four across Morecambe Bay, Lancashire, as the tide was coming in, negotiating treacherous quicksands.

9. He still fits into the Royal Navy uniform he wore on his wedding day more than 68 years ago.

10. He once built a hang glider and got behind the wheel of a bulldozer to dig out a garden at Balmoral himself.