The passing of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh has evoked much emotion amongst many of the ‘Wartime generation’ who live within our care homes.
For them, his contribution to the war and military efforts, his down to earth nature and his unwavering support to the Queen and Monarch, gained the respect of a generation that lived through the trials and tribulations of Great Britain during the 1900s.
This week has seen many of our residents reflect on their experiences with Prince Philip. Isabella Whyte, 97, speaks fondly of growing up in Elgin at the timethe Duke schooled at Gordonstoun .
‘I was about 14 years old and I would see Prince Philip every Sunday at Hopeman beach near Gordonstoun. I used to cycle there, from Elgin, every Sunday with my father so that we could visit our beach hut. My parents built the beach hut there and it was such a lovely place. There was always an energy and atmosphere that I remember fondly.
‘Each week, we would see the Prince and the other boys from his school enjoying the beach. They’d take part in activities and you could see they were having lots of fun.’
‘He was always so friendly and well mannered, and, without fail, would take the time to speak to us, often commenting on the weather or asking what we had been enjoying.’
Isabella often speaks of Prince Philip, and her time spent at Hopetoun beach. These are great memories for her, ones that she cherishes. She also told us; ‘oh he was a bit of a looker back then, he definitely was - and I wasn’t the only one who thought so! All the girls did- he was a good-looking boy!’
So tomorrow, Saturday 17th April, our homes will lift a glass to remember a gentleman and comrade, who served his country and Queen and helped create a strong and influential nation.