Saturday, 16 June 2012

Highest Ranks

The Queen has appointed The Prince of Wales to the highest rank in all three military services, coinciding with Her Majesty's official birthday.

The Queen appointed Charles honorary five-star rank in all three services to acknowledge his support in her role as Commander-in-Chief.

He becomes  Admiral of the Fleet, Field Marshal and Marshal of the Royal Air Force in the honorary promotion decided by the Queen.


Two members of the royal family currently hold five-star rank - the Duke of Edinburgh in all three services and the Duke of Kent, who is a Field Marshal.

The convention of promoting service chiefs to five-star ranks was stopped after a report in 1995 suggested abolishing them as part of recommendations for financial savings in the armed forces' budget. They are now reserved for special circumstances.

General the Lord Guthrie was the first officer not to be promoted upon appointment as Chief of the Defence staff - a role he held from 1997 to 2001. He was appointed to the honorary rank of Field Marshal.

The appointments coincide with the Queen's Birthday Honours, but a Buckingham Palace spokesman said they are not related.

The honorary promotions will incur no cost to the Ministry of Defence and will not have an impact on the promotion prospects of serving personnel or the honorary appointments of other Members of the Royal Family.

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