Prince Philip’s death: Funeral details revealed; Prince Charles’ tribute to ‘my dear Papa’
Prince Charles has paid an emotional tribute to his father as details of the ceremonial royal funeral are revealed for the late Prince Philip on Saturday – but it will not be the substantial affair many would expect.
The details came as the Prince of Wales today posted a video on social media, addressing the death of his father – ‘my dear Papa -who was 99.
“I particularly wanted to say that my father for the last 70 years has given the most remarkable, devoted service to the Queen, to my family and to the country and to the commonwealth,” he said.
“As you can imagine, my family and I miss my father enormously.
“He was a much loved and appreciated figure.
“My dear Papa was a very special person who I think above all else would have been amazed by the reaction and the touching things that have been said about him.”
Prince Charles said his family was “deeply grateful” for the reaction to his father’s death.
“It will sustain us in this particular loss and at this particularly sad time,” he said.
The funeral service will take place at St George’s Chapel, in the grounds of Windsor Castle, at 3pm on Saturday – which is 2am Sunday New Zealand time.
The event will be televised in the UK.
The BBC have reported that Prince Philip was reported to have requested a funeral of minimal fuss and will not lie in state.
He will lie at rest in the private chapel at Windsor Castle until the day of the funeral, rather than lying in state where members of the public would have been able to view his coffin.
The BBC reported that the Duke of Edinburgh’s coffin has been draped in his personal flag, his standard, which represents elements of his life, from his Greek heritage to his British titles.
A wreath of flowers has also been placed atop the coffin.
Whilst monarchs are usually recognised with state funerals, Covid-19 restrictions in the United Kingdom mean Prince Philip’s ceremonial funeral will be “much lower key” than if he had died outside the pandemic.
But the Palace said the service also “reflects the duke’s wishes” and it will still “celebrate and reflect” a life of service.
As per social distancing rules in the UK, only 30 people can attend a funeral.
The pallbearers and clergy are not included in the number of attendees.
Official details of the invited guests or family members are yet to be announced but there has been much speculation about who will make the invite list.
It is thought Prince Harry will attend but his wife Meghan, who is heavily pregnant with their second child, will not.
It has been reported that Prince Philip’s children Charles, Anne, Andrew and Edward will attend with their partners.
Their children and partners will attend and some grandchildren including Prince William’s three youngsters Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis.
Had the duke died at another time where there were no restriction’s his death – codenamed Forth Bridge -would have attracted thousands of people who would have gathered in London and Windsor.
The BBC reported that hundreds of members of the armed forces alongside thousands of police would also have lined the streets to keep control of the crowds.
On the day – farewelling a Prince
On Saturday Prince Philip’s coffin will be moved to the State Entrance of Windsor Castle and place on a “modified Land Rover” that the duke himself helped design and transported the short distance to St George’s Chapel.
That procession is expected to take eight minutes and involve military personnel.
Pallbearers will flank the vehicle members of the Royal Family, including the eldest son of the Duke and Queen Elizabeth and heir to the throne the Prince of Wales, will walk behind the coffin.
The Queen will travel separately to the chapel for the service.
At the West Steps of the chapel the eight pallbearers will carry the Prince’s coffin, draped with his standard, hisnaval cap, a floral wreath and sword on top.
The coffin will be greeted by the Dean of Windsor and the Archbishop of Canterbury. After the service, the duke will be interred in the royal vault.
The Queen has approved Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s recommendation that there will be a period of National Mourning beginning on Friday 9 April until Saturday 17 April, the day of the Funeral inclusive.
This means that Union flags are being flown at half-mast on Royal Residences, Government Buildings, establishments of the Armed Forces and UK Posts overseas.
The Royal Standard will remain being flown at full mast.
“Additionally, it is The Queen’s wish that the Royal Family will observe two weeks of Royal Mourning starting yesterday,” a statement said.
“Royal Mourning will be observed by Members of the Royal Family and their Households, together with troops committed to Ceremonial Duties.
“During this period, Members of the Royal Family will continue undertaking engagements appropriate to the circumstances. Mourning bands will be worn where appropriate.”
Further details on the Funeral Service and the Order of Service will be released in due course.
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