Prince Philip's bedtime routine with children featured this special ritual

Prince Philip's bedtime routine with his children included this sweet ritual

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 12: (L-R) Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh during "The Patron's Lunch" celebrations for The Queen's 90th birthday at The Mall on June 12, 2016 in London, England. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)
(Image credit: Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)

Prince Philip's bedtime routine with his children has been revealed – and it's melting our hearts. 

The Duke of Edinburgh, who died aged 99 on Friday, was known within the Royal Family for his firm yet fun-loving parenting style. As the patriarch of the Windsor household, the Navy veteran ran a tight ship when it came to rules and discipline –but that doesn't mean it was all work and no play. 

While the Queen spent much of her time engaged in royal duties as head of state, Prince Philip focused his energies on raising the couple's four children. Despite his portrayal as an aloof father in The Crown, the duke was far more affectionate with his offspring in reality. 

Princess Anne, the second-born child of Prince Philip and the Queen, has shared heartwarming memories of her dad's special bedtime routine treat growing up.

The royal family at Buckingham Palace, London, 1972. Left to right: Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, Prince Philip, Queen Elizabeth, Prince Edward and Prince Charles. (Photo by Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)Elizabeth II

Prince Philip loved reading to his children at bedtime when they were young 

(Image credit: Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

In an ITV documentary that celebrated the duke's 90th birthday in 2011, she recalled his commitment to being present on 'a regular basis' with the children before they nodded off. The princess also revealed that her father often read to them to help them fall asleep – a ritual she reflects on with fondness. 

“Bedtime stories are things that children probably don’t get so much nowadays but they were very important in my day," she said. 

Prince Philip also enjoyed spending time with his young family during the day. The former military man loved challenging his children to some friendly competition, especially if the contest involved physical activity. Philip was shown racing against his first-born, Prince Charles, while riding on Anne's red and white tricycle, in a clip released in 2016. The adorable footage, which was unearthed from the royal archives to mark the Queen's 90th birthday, gave the public a rare insight into the more playful side of this elusive consort. 

Prince Philip died at Windsor Castle on Friday after battling poor health for the past few months. His funeral, which will take place on Saturday, April 17 will only be attended by 30 guests due to Covid-19 restrictions. 

Emma Dooney
Emma Dooney

Emma is a news writer for woman&home and My Imperfect Life. She covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health or lifestyle story. When she's not reporting on the British monarchy and A-list celebs, you can find her whipping up vegan treats and running the roads to cheesy '90s pop music...but not at the same time, obviously.