The Queen’s cousin The Duke of Kent is in hospital tonight after suffering a stroke.

The Duke, 77, fell ill on Sunday night and will spend the next few days in hospital but sources said his stroke is thought to have been mild.

Royal sources said the Queen was relieved to learn that her close relative Edward was in “good spirits” after being told the worrying news.

His illness comes as the Queen, 86, is still recovering after being taken to hospital with gastroenteritis.

A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman said today: “The Duke of Kent was taken ill on Sunday and has been admitted to hospital for assessment and treatment.

“Regrettably, official engagements for the next three weeks will be either postponed or cancelled.”

The Duke of Kent sitting next Queen Elizabeth II
Cousins: The Duke of Kent sitting next to the Queen

The source added: “The Duke has been diagnosed with a mild stroke. His condition is being monitored, but is not thought to be serious.”

The Queen was said to be concerned but relieved he appears to be recovering.

The source added: “They have known each other all their lives.”

The Duke carried out 239 engagements last year on behalf of the Queen, despite his age, and his illness is a reminder of the advancing years of Britain’s working royals.

Best known for handing out Wimbledon trophies as President of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, he is also the top Freemason – the Grand Master of the United Grand Lodge of England.

He was a respected Army officer and trade ambassador for 25 years.

The Duchess of Kent has dropped her royal HRH title and withdrawn from public life after reportedly suffering depression.

She now works as a music teacher, preferring to be known as plain Katharine Kent.

The Duke and Duchess of Kent
Marriage: The Duke with Duchess of Kent, who has dropped her HRH title

The couple have three children George, the Earl of St Andrews, Lady Helen Taylor, and Lord Nicholas Windsor.

The Duke is president of the Stroke Association and its chief executive Jon Barrick said: “We are deeply saddened to hear about His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent’s stroke.

“Our thoughts are with him and his family and we wish him a very speedy recovery.

“The Duke of Kent has been president of the Stroke Association since our inception over 20 years ago and he has shown tremendous support and dedication to our cause.”

The Duke of Kent’s father was Prince George, the younger brother of King George VI and King Edward VIII.

His mother, Princess Marine, was the daughter of Prince Nicholas of Greece.

Queen’s fears for her cousin as Duke of Kent, 77, in hospital after stroke –
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