The front of the envelope is the usual from the British Royals. One interesting thing is my address is printed on a label, instead of straight on the envelope. This is often a sign of a form reply. It allows them to prepare replies in bulk, with form letters in unaddressed envelopes. They can then print out batches of labels as they go through the letters and cards from well-wishers.
The back of the envelope features Prince Philip's badge. There has been some discussion about what exactly this thing is called, as it is not a monogram, cypher or coat of arms. And I can confirm that this is called a "badge." I found an article on the old Royal website where they refer to it as a badge.
In the center of the badge is Edinburgh Castle. It is surrounded by the Order of Garter belt and topped with a coronet.
Inside the envelope is a form letter. Pretty much everyone who wrote for Philip's birthday got the same thing.
The letter is from Mrs. Suzy Lethbridge, Prince Philip's correspondence secretary. The signature is printed on the letter. Everyone who received this form letter had the same signature.
But it is not the same signature as past replies (e.g. Philip's birthday last year). It looks like, each time they create a new form letter, Mrs. Lethbridge creates a new copy of her signature. This is done to make harder to tell the signature isn't real. If I compare this letter with other replies I received, the signatures are all slightly different, which usually means it's real. But when I compare my reply with other people's, for both this birthday & past events, I can see the form letters for each occasion use the same signatures.
The letter reads:
Prince Philip is most grateful for your message of good wishes for his birthday.
Correspondence Secretary to
H.R.H. The Duke of Edinburgh
The bottom of Prince Philip's stationery has the address, telephone number and fax number for Buckingham Palace. The numbers are general for the Palace, not specific for Prince Philip's office.
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