In May 2017, British newspaper The Guardian made headlines by revealing the plan for how the government would handle the death of Queen Elizabeth II. But there is also a plan in place for the death of Prince Philip, her 74-year-old husband.
Buckingham Palace announced that he died Friday morning at Windsor Castle. Britain’s oldest and oldest royal wife in 10 centuries was 99.
Prince Philip’s funeral will take place on April 17 at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle as part of a family service that will be closed to the public, Buckingham Palace said in a statement on Saturday. Prince Philip will be buried with all the honors due to a prince of the United Kingdom and a consort of Queen Elizabeth II.
“The Duke of Edinburgh’s coffin, covered with the personal standard of His Royal Highness and dressed in a wreath of flowers, rests in the private chapel of Windsor Castle, where it will remain until the day of the funeral”, indicates the statement from Buckingham Palace.
Palace officials said the ceremony will be conducted strictly in accordance with government COVID-19 guidelines, which limit the number of people attending the funeral. They declined to say whether the royal family would be required to wear masks.
The coronavirus pandemic means it will be a more low-key farewell than the one that has marked many royal deaths. The pandemic has required changes to the well-prepared plans for the death of Philip, dubbed Operation Forth Bridge.
“During the coronavirus pandemic, and in light of current government advice and social distancing guidelines, modified funeral and ceremonial arrangements for His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh are being considered by His Majesty The Queen,” said Friday Buckingham Palace in a press release.
His death was marked with greetings from 41 guns at noon on Saturday in locations across the country, including the Tower of London and Edinburgh Castle, as well as in Gibraltar and on Royal Navy ships at sea .
When Philip retired from public life at the age of 96 in August 2017, the media began to search for details of his funeral and burial. Here’s an idea of what to expect, along with answers to common questions.
Will Prince Philip have a state funeral?
No. Technically, as the sovereign’s consort, Philip is entitled to a funeral ceremony, the same type used to honor the Queen Mother and Princess Diana. However, he would not, it seems, want this kind of “hassle” to be done on him.
This means that it passes the usual service at Westminster Abbey or St Paul’s Cathedral and will not remain in condition at the Palace of Westminster.
In 2013, The Sunday Times reported that Philip informed local officials that they did not have to go through the stress of holding such a ceremony, often with only a few hours’ notice. They last hosted a royal lie in 2002, when the Queen Mother passed away, drawing some 200,000 mourners.
How are state and ceremonial funerals different?
While Prince Philip doesn’t have one either, there are some differences between state funerals and ceremonies.
Both typically involve lying in the state and service at Westminster Abbey or St. Paul’s Cathedral, but the latter is usually reserved for sovereign and distinguished figures such as Winston Churchill. However, ceremonial funerals do not require parliamentary approval and funding.
Remember how Princess Diana’s coffin was transported through the streets of London by a horse-drawn carriage? This is the other distinguishing feature of ceremonial funerals, according to parliamentary documents. When the Queen died, hers would be drawn by sailors from the Royal Navy, a tradition dating back to Queen Victoria’s funeral in 1901.
Where will his body be kept before the funeral?
Buckingham Palace officials confirmed in a statement on Saturday that the Duke of Edinburgh’s coffin rests in the private chapel at Windsor Castle, where it will remain until the day of the funeral.
On April 17, “the Duke of Edinburgh’s coffin will be moved by a group of carriers found by the Queen’s Company, 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards,” the statement said. “Representative detachments from His Royal Highness special military relations will be placed in the Windsor Castle Quadrangle.”
Where will his funeral be?
The funeral will be on April 17 at Windsor Castle, according to the palace.
The College of Arms, the body that oversees the ceremonial protocol, said on Friday that the Duke’s body would rest at Windsor Castle, where Philip spent his final weeks with the Queen. His funeral will take place in St George’s Chapel at the castle, site of centuries of royal burials, and in the same 800-seat castle on the grounds of Windsor Castle that hosted the May 2018 wedding of his grandson, the Prince Harry, and former Meghan Markle, now Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
“The service will be preceded by a ceremonial procession within the grounds of Windsor Castle,” the palace statement read.
Under current COVID-19 restrictions, up to 30 people are allowed at funerals and 15 can attend revivals from April 12, BBC reports, although the government says that number may change based on capacity location and does not include workers. The new Phase 2 reopening guidelines increase the number of participants upon awakening by six.
Funerals can take place indoors or outdoors and crematoriums and cemeteries remain open.
Members of the public are urged to avoid congregating in crowds and consider donating to charity in lieu of floral tributes, according to a statement from Buckingham Palace. There will also be an online condolence book for those wishing to leave messages for the late Duke of Edinburgh available on the royal website.
Who will be invited?
“Her Majesty The Queen and members of the Royal Family will attend the funeral,” Buckingham Palace said in a statement.
The guest list will likely be rather small due to COVID-19, which has already had a personal impact on the Royal Family; Prince Charles and Prince William both tested positive for the virus last year.
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will they be present?
Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, stepped down from their roles as high-profile royals last year and moved to California.
Prince Harry, who is the Queen’s grandson, will attend the service along with other members of the Royal Family, although Meghan, who is pregnant, has been advised by her doctor not to attend, reports the Associated Press.
According to its border control website, the UK currently requires anyone entering the country to be quarantined at their destination accommodation or in a designated quarantine hotel for 10 days. However, they can leave their quarantine location for compassionate reasons to attend the funeral. They must quarantine themselves at all other times.
Where will he be buried?
Prince Philip will be buried in the royal vault of St. George’s Chapel, according to the palace.
The Queen is also expected to rest in Windsor in the royal vault of Saint George’s Chapel. Another possibility could be that she is buried alongside her parents and sister, Princess Margaret, in the King George VI Memorial Chapel, a small annex named after her father in the larger Saint Chapel. -George.
Philip’s mother, Princess Alice of Greece, was initially buried in St. George’s Chapel in 1969, but her body was transferred to a church on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem in 1988, according to her wishes.
But the Duke of Windsor was buried in Frogmore, after his body was returned to Britain in 1972 from Paris where he was living in exile following his abdication in 1936. His American wife, Wallis Simpson, Duchess of Windsor, has was buried next to him in 1986.
Frogmore Gardens is also the final resting place of Britain’s last reigning queen, Victoria, who chose to be buried alongside her husband, Prince Albert, who died in 1861, rather than at the Abbey of Westminster or in the royal vault of Saint George’s Chapel.
Will there be an official period of national mourning?
Yes, in fact, that appears to be the only part of the royal funeral protocol that will be observed. Traditionally, this lasts from the day of death until the day of the funeral. It is not immediately clear how COVID-19 may impact the length of the grieving period. In the case of the queen mother, it lasted eight days. Until funerals, traditionally business of state and any new laws awaiting Royal Assent from the Queen are suspended and condolence books are generally made available at embassies around the world for the public to see. sign them.
Will the flags be lowered in his honor?
Yes, the flags on government buildings and royal residences have been lowered at half mast, with one notable exception. The Royal Standard only flies when the Queen is in residence and is never lowered as it signifies the continuity of the monarchy. He will not even be lowered upon his death as his heir, Prince Charles, will be ascended to the throne.
Flags on government buildings and royal residences were lowered to half-mast on Friday and British TV stations canceled scheduled programs to allow special coverage after Philip’s death.
After Diana’s death, the Queen was criticized for not lowering the flag at Buckingham Palace. Typically, the only flag flown there is the Royal Standard, which was not on display because she was on vacation at Balmoral. Eventually, she agreed to pilot the Union Jack mid-stick there.
When will Queen Elizabeth return to office?
Although she will reopen her famous red boxes of government documents after this initial eight-day period of mourning, she is not expected to fully resume public life until after a 30-day period of mourning.
Contributing: Rasha Ali and Maria Puente, USA TODAY; The Associated Press