Prince Philip’s ‘well trained’ quip after finding Royal piper’s son in Balmoral garden

Royal family honour Prince Philip in BBC documentary

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Pipe Major Scott Methven has shared personal insight into the Royal Family after serving as Piper to the Sovereign from 2015 to 2019. Mr Methven, who would play the bagpipes outside the Queen’s window each morning, revealed how the monarchy showed compassion and came to his assistance after his wife Morven was diagnosed with cancer in 2017.

Their two children, Fearghas, now eight, and Lilly-Grace, now 15, would stay with royal nannies at a cottage in Balmoral and later on the grounds of Windsor Castle as Mr Methven took care of his wife.

In one instance at the Queen’s Scottish residence, Mr Methven recalls Fearghas, then five would be out searching for the Duke of Edinburgh in the garden.

He said his son shared the late Duke’s passion for red squirrels and would often be outdoors exploring.

But, Mr Methven said whenever his son saw Prince Philip he was taught to bow his head – much to the amazement of the Duke.

Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, Mr Methven said: “My son would bump into the Duke of Edinburgh at the back of the cottage in Balmoral.

“I remember coming round the back and seeing Fearghas standing with his head bowed like I’d taught him, and the Duke standing with his stick saying ‘Who’s this? Who does he belong to?’

“I told him he was my son and he said: ‘You’ve got him bloody well trained’.

“We were there laughing.”

The royal Piper was full of huge admiration for the Queen, who he said was instrumental in making sure he was able to put his family first after receiving the news of his wife’s illness.

Mr Methven, who served in the army for 25 years, said he was given assurances to leave his royal duties whenever he needed to by the Queen.

He said: “I was the Queen’s escort and we would always have a wee chat. She was so understanding.

“She’d say ‘If you get a phone call in the middle of the night, you don’t need to ask anybody, just go. If anybody says anything, tell them I told you so’. And if I don’t hear you in the morning, I’ll know why’.”

His wife was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer in 2017 after the Queen’s doctor took a blood test.

She was then taken to hospital to undergo treatment and lived for another year.

Mr Methven grew up in Sterling around 200 miles from Balmoral and recalled how the Queen would also send treats to the nurses.

He said: “One morning when I went to the hospital, the Queen had arranged for strawberries and muffins to be made up in a basket for the nurses. She said ‘make sure they get that’.


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“That’s what it’s about, isn’t it?

“People on the military side were conscious about me getting back to work but the Queen said ‘absolutely not, it’s family first, you have as much time as you need to look after your wife’.”

Mr Methvan served with the Armed Forces in Northern Ireland and completed two tours of Afghanistan.

He left the Army in 2019 and now teaches the bagpipes.
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