Prince William Leaving Armed Forces, Family Moving to Kensington Palace

Prince William disembarks his RAF Search and Rescue Helicopter
Prince William has left the Armed Forces, with his nearly eight year tour with the Royal Air Force done. Indigo/Getty Images

It really is a new era for Prince William. Nearly two months after the birth of his first child Prince George, Britain's future King has left the armed forces, having completed his tour as a Royal Air Force Pilot, Kensington Palace announced in a statement Thursday, Sept. 12.

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"His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge is to leave operational service in the Armed Forces," the statement reads. "He completes his Tour with the Royal Air Force Search and Rescue Force at RAF Valley, Anglesey, after more than seven-and-a-half years of full-time military service."

Working with grandmother Queen Elizabeth, wife Kate Middleton, brother Prince Harry and the entire Royal Family, the 31-year-old is "currently considering a number of options for public service," the statement continues. The Duke of Cambridge has been a Search and Rescue helicopter pilot since January 2009, serving in the Royal Air Force Valley in Angelsey, Wales since 2010.

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With his military career behind him, William plans to "expand his work in the field of conservation, particularly in respect of endangered species," the statement continues. One major way William plans to expand that endeavor is via "United for Wildlife," a brand-new partnership between the Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry and seven of the world's most influential conservation organizations, which will focus on illegal wildlife trade and other conservation crises.

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William and the Duchess, 31 — along with Prince George, of course — will finally move into their official residence at London's Kensington Palace "within the next few weeks," the Palace added.

Adds a source of William's long-term career plans: "This is a transitional year for the Duke… He is still considering his options."

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