Prince Philip, 97, is officially the third oldest royal in British history

The Duke of Edinburgh has become the third oldest royal in British history.

Philip, 97, has overtaken Princess Alice, Countess of Athlone, who was 97 years and 10 months when she died in 1981.

Royal expert Ingrid Seward, said: “Philip has always been tremendously fit but it is still a remarkable achievement to be so active at his age.”

Princess Alice, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria, lived for 35,741 days.

The duke, who retired from public duties when he was 96, has reached 35,742 days of age.

He is the oldest ever male member of the British royals.

But the record for oldest British royal ever goes to Princess Alice, Duchess of Gloucester, who lived to 102, followed by the Queen Mother, who was 101 when she died.

Philip was born in Corfu on June 10, 1921, to Prince Andrew of Greece and Princess Alice of Battenberg. He turns 98 in June.

Philip is the longest-serving consort in British history.

His duties began on February 6, 1952, when his wife, Princess Elizabeth, became Queen. The monarch turns 93 tomorrow.

Ms Seward, editor-in-chief of Majesty magazine, added: “No doubt Philip will be looking forward to celebrating this weekend with the Queen.”

Philip has been spending much of his retirement at Wood Farm on the Sandringham estate in Norfolk.

Early this year, a Land Rover he was driving was involved in a serious crash with a car carrying a mother and a baby.

Three weeks later, he decided to surrender his driving licence.

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