The College was deeply saddened to hear the news of the death of HRH Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, Visitor of Churchill College.
HRH Prince Philip only recently stepped down from his role as our College Visitor, a position he had held since the College’s foundation in 1960. It was a role which saw him acting as an overseer of the College, allowing him to give advice on any doubts around the College’s powers under its charter and statutes, and to determine disputes arising between the College and its members. On 5 June 1964 the College pulled out all the stops to welcome him to Cambridge to perform our opening ceremony, and he continued to return to the College many times in the following years. In 1969, he was present for the student organised International Student Conference on ‘Relations between Industry and the Universities’, and in 1973 he attended the official opening of the Archives Centre. He last visited on 25th June 2014 to dine with members and partners to officially mark the end of the College’s 50th Anniversary celebrations and Appeal.
HRH Prince Philip’s role at Churchill was in addition to his 35 years as Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, from December 1976 to June 2011. Professor Stephen Toope, the current Vice-Chancellor of the University, said: “It is a great sadness to hear of the death of His Royal Highness, the Duke of Edinburgh. Prince Philip’s strong and deep relationship with Cambridge went back many decades, and his enthusiastic support of the University’s work, both as its Chancellor for 35 years and at other times in a personal capacity, was deeply appreciated here. On behalf of the Duke’s many friends and well-wishers at the University, I extend my most sincere condolences to Her Majesty the Queen and the Royal Family.”