Buckingham Palace has announced that HRH Prince Philip is to step back from public engagements from this Autumn.
The Duke of Edinburgh, who will celebrate his 96th birthday in June, has the full support of Her Majesty, The Queen.
Rumours overnight began to circulate that all staff of the royal household had been summoned to the Palace for an emergency meeting, including staff from royal residences across the UK such as Windsor Castle and Sandringham.
The global media and social networking websites went into overdrive speculating on the nature of the meeting, forcing a Palace spokesperson to say prior to the meeting that there was "no cause for alarm".
"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.
"The Duke of Edinburgh is Patron, President or a member of over 780 organisations, with which he will continue to be associated, although he will no longer play an active role by attending engagements.
"Her Majesty will continue to carry out a full programme of official engagements with the support of members of the Royal Family."Buckingham Palace
The royal aides were briefed by the Lord Chamberlain, and HM Queen's personal private secretary, Sir Christopher Geidt.
Prime Minister Theresa May gave her reaction to the announcement, saying; "From his steadfast support for Her Majesty the Queen to his inspirational Duke of Edinburgh Awards and his patronage of hundreds of charities and good causes, his contribution to our United Kingdom, the Commonwealth and the wider world will be of huge benefit to us all for years to come."
The leader of the opposition Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, also commented, wishing the Duke of Edinburgh all the best for his "well-earned retirement" and paid tribute to him "for his service to the country". Meanwhile, UKIP Leader Paul Nuttall MEP said, "Today we should honour the life of service to our Queen and nation by Prince Philip. For over 60 years he has been a dedicated public servant, and deserves our great thanks. Happy retirement Sir."
The Queen will continue with her schedule of public engagements.