The Queen has marked Prince Edward’s birthday by granting him a grand new moniker to use when travelling in Scotland.
The Earl of Wessex, who turns 55 today, and his wife Sophie, 54, will now be known as the Earl and Countess of Forfar when the couple are travelling north of the English border.
Forfar, which has a population of just over 14,000, is the county town of Angus.
The new title was announced as part of celebrations to mark the Prince’s special day, alongside an affectionate tweet from the royal family’s official Twitter account wishing the royal ‘a very happy birthday’.
The Earldom of Forfar was created in 1661 and became extinct as a title in 1715 when the second Earl died leaving no children.
Prince Edward is patron of a number of Scottish charitable organisations, such as The Edinburgh International Festival, the National Youth Orchestras of Scotland and Badminton Scotland.
As trustee of The Duke of Edinburgh Award he has supported the non formal education of thousands of young people in Scotland and holds annual Gold Award presentations at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh.
In 2014, The Earl was Lord High Commissioner to the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, the Queen’s personal representative to the assembly.
Forfar is situated near Glamis Castle, the seat of the Earls of Strathmore and Kinghorne, the family which the late Queen Mother was part of.