Queen awards rare ‘Royal’ name as a nod to beloved husband Prince Philip


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The Queen bid a sad final farewell to her 73-year-old husband Prince Philip at Westminster Abbey and has now bestowed a very sparingly conferred honor on a cherished institution

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Prince Philip monument: Emily Retter reports from Westminster Abbey

The Queen has authorized the naval, army and air force institutions to use the title “Royal” as a nod to her late husband Prince Philip, royal insiders have revealed.

The organization was founded in 1920 when the then Secretary of State for War, Winston Churchill, set up a committee to oversee the organization of armed forces canteens after the First World War.

Since 1920, the NAAFI has provided leisure, catering and recreation services to members of the armed forces stationed around the world.

Sources said the Queen planned to approve the Royal NAAFI’s name change on the advice of the government after “hearts and minds were focused on the death and legacy of the Duke of Edinburgh,” which took place last April on 99- age died.

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Since 1920, the NAAFI has provided leisure, catering and recreation services to members of the armed forces stationed around the world

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King George VI was the original patron of the NAAFI until his death in 1952, when Her Majesty the Queen took over the role.

The organization also provided service on board the Royal Yacht Britannia during its assignment.

The Queen sadly bid farewell to her 73-year-old husband, Philip, who, like the Queen Mother, was a source of lifelong support at Westminster Abbey.







The royal couple in 2012

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The late Duke of Edinburgh was aware of a desire to rename the organization, which finally got the go-ahead after his death.

The title ‘Royal’ is awarded very sparingly and those given the honor must be able to demonstrate a genuine royal connection as well as demonstrate a close personal interest between members of the Royal Family and the organization to be considered for the prestigious title .







Charles presents an ‘Operation SHADER’ medal to Lance Sergeant Okeke (C) of The Prince of Wales Company, after their deployment to Iraq, during a reception at their barracks in Windsor

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Casting his support behind the application, Cabinet Minister Rt Hon Michael Ellis QC MP said: “The NAAFI has played a vital role in supporting our armed forces during a number of overseas conflicts for over 100 years.

“Receiving the royal title is a truly significant honor and it clearly shows how seriously this country takes NAAFI’s continued support for those who have served and continue to serve this country.”







Prince William and Kate pose for a family photo with soldiers during their visit to the 1st Battalion Irish Guards at Mons Barracks in Aldershot

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POOL/AFP via Getty Images)







In 2021, the organization provided 95 grants worth £1.2 million

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King George VI was the original patron of the NAAFI until his death in 1952, when the Queen took over the role.

The organization also provided service on board the Royal Yacht Britannia during its assignment.

All profits will be reinvested in the Armed Forces, either through social security contributions, facility investments or into the NAAFI Fund, which will provide at least £1 million in funding each year to Armed Forces personnel and their families in the form of grants for welfare projects.







The ancient royal family in their younger days, in 1961

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In 2021, the organization provided 95 scholarships worth £1.2 million.

NAAFI CEO Steve Marshall said: “We are truly grateful for receiving the royal title and we strive to repay this honor by continuing our outstanding support to our armed forces as we embark on our second century of operations.

“Everyone at NAAFI will be proud of this recognition and it will be a timely boost to all of our employees and loyal customers serving around the world today.”

Defense and Veterans Secretary Leo Docherty said: “I am delighted that NAAFI has been awarded the title of Royal NAAFI.

“This is a great honor, especially at the end of the NAAFI’s 100th anniversary, and recognizes their wider service to our armed forces.

“The sacrifices NAAFI employees have made in their efforts to serve those who serve are deeply appreciated by Defense, and it is great to see this recognition.”

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