Meghan Markle made 'every effort' to travel to UK for Prince Philip's funeral but doctors told her NOT to fly from US
MEGHAN Markle made "every effort" to travel to the UK for Prince Philip's funeral but doctors told her NOT to fly, a Senior Palace Official and Buckingham Palace spokesman said.
The Duchess is heavily pregnant with her second child – and so will not be able to make it to the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral service at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle next Saturday.
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It was revealed late this afternoon that Prince Harry will fly in from the US for the sombre ceremony, while Meghan, 39, stays at home.
Meghan made “every effort” to travel but didn’t receive medical clearance from her physician, a Senior Palace Official and Buckingham Palace spokesman said today.
Harry is “united in grief” with his family over the death of Prince Philip and is reported to be making immediate plans to fly back to Britain.
It would mark the first time he has come face-to-face with his family since he and Meghan sat down with Oprah Winfrey for their explosive interview last month.
Two royal experts believe that the funeral could offer Harry a chance to heal any rift the interview may have caused.
Sources claimed the Duke of Sussex spoke to several members of his family following his grandfather's death on Friday, including Prince Charles.
The insider said: “He said he wants to be with everyone and was already making arrangements to come home.”
The highly-respected Press Association earlier reported it was "likely Harry will be among the small number of mourners" at the private service.
The Duke of Edinburgh passed away "peacefully" at Windsor Castle on Friday aged 99 after being by the Queen's side for more than 70 years.
Meghan and Harry paid a poignant tribute to Harry's grandfather on Friday afternoon, leaving a message on their Archewell website.
His funeral will take place at 3pm on Saturday but it will be a ceremonial funeral, not a state funeral in line with Duke's own wishes.
It comes as:
- A tearful Countess of Wessex said the Queen has been "amazing" after visiting the monarch today
- The Tower of London leads 40-minute global gun salute in honour of Prince Philip as warships fire farewells to the Duke at sea
- The Queen was 'by her husband's side' as he died – and Philip spent his final days enjoying the sunshine
- Boris Johnson pays tribute to ‘extraordinary’ Prince Philip
- Mourners flock to Buckingham Palace – but officials remove tributes in a bid to keep crowds under control
The royal coffin will be transported from the castle to the chapel for the funeral in a specially-modified Land Rover he helped to design.
It will be followed by the Prince of Wales and senior royals on foot, a senior Palace official said.
The funeral will place entirely in grounds of Windsor Castle and there will be no public procession.
The coffin will be flanked by pallbearers drawn from the duke's special relationships – the Royal Marines, regiments, corps and air stations.
The procession from the state entrance to the west steps of St George's Chapel will take eight minutes.
The route of the procession will be lined by representatives drawn from the Royal Navy, the Royal Marines, the Highlanders, 4th Battalion Royal Regiment of Scotland and the Royal Air Force.
Minute guns will be fired by the King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery from the east lawn of castle for the duration of the procession, and the Curfew Tower Bell will toll.
It will begin with a national minute's silence at 3pm – which will be broadcast on TV.
The Duke's body is currently resting in the private chapel at Windsor Castle.
The Queen has approved PM's recommendation that there will be a period of national mourning starting yesterday and ending on Saturday.
The Royal Family will observe two weeks of mourning.
The coffin will be moved to the state entrance of Windsor Castle by a bearer party from the Grenadier Guards.
The ceremonial procession will step off from the state entrance at 2.45pm.
Prince of Wales and members of royal family will follow on foot behind the coffin
All those taking part in the procession will not enter St George's Chapel and the Funeral service will begin as coffin enters St George's Chapel.
A Palace spokesman said: "This event will be much reduced in scale with no public access.
"In line with Government guidelines and public health measures, there will be no public processions and the duke's funeral will take place entirely within the grounds of Windsor Castle.
"The plans have been given final approval by the Queen and reflect appropriately Government advice.
"Despite these necessary changes, they still very much reflect the personal wishes of the duke.
"Although the ceremonial arrangements are reduced, the occasion will still celebrate and recognise the duke's life and his more than 70 years of service to the Queen, the UK and the Commonwealth."
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