Prince Philip "deserves a rest", according to royal author Phil Dampier.

Prince Philip

Prince Philip

The 96-year-old royal - who announced his upcoming retirement earlier this year - is gearing up to take part in his final royal engagement on Wednesday (02.08.17) where he will host a parade at Buckingham Palace in honour of the finale of the Royal Marines 1664 Global Challenge.

Now, royal author Phil Dampier - who has written several books about the Duke of Edinburgh - has said he completely agrees with the royal's decision to step down from his duties, and thinks he has earned the right to "relax".

Speaking to Sky News, Phil said: "At 96 I really do feel he deserves a rest. I don't think he's going to disappear completely, I'm sure he'll turn up for various jobs with the Queen here and there but the nice thing is now he can pick and choose them, and relax when he wants to, and that's good for the nation I think."

Wednesday's special parade marks the final stretch of the 1664 Global Challenge, in which marines from around the country have run 16.64 miles each day for 100 days, totalling a distance of 1,664 miles. The number is symbolic for the naval fighting force, which traces its roots back to the year 1664.

A palace spokeswoman said in a statement that the parade would "bring His Royal Highness's individual programme to a conclusion, although he may choose to attend certain events, alongside the Queen, from time-to-time."

Meanwhile, it was revealed earlier this year that Prince Philip would be stepping down from his royal duties after the summer.

A statement released at the time read: "His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh has decided that he will no longer carry out public engagements from the autumn of this year. In taking this decision.

"Prince Philip will attend previously scheduled engagements between now and August, both individually and accompanying The Queen. Thereafter, The Duke will not be accepting new invitations for visits and engagements.

"Although he may still choose to attend certain public events from time to time."

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