How to watch Prince Philip's funeral 6 months ago

How to watch Prince Philip's funeral

The Duke of Edinburgh's funeral is scheduled for this Saturday - here's how to watch it:

It has been less than a week since Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, passed away at the age of 99 and although his wishes were not to have the traditional state funeral - saying he simply "did not want a fuss" - his reduced royal ceremonial service will still be televised.

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Given current coronavirus restrictions, the Duke's body lying in state and members of the general public lining the streets of the procession wouldn't be permitted anyway, so the more modest funeral of 30 people will work in line with both his wishes and public safety needs.

Equally, broadcasting the memorial on TV and radio will still allow the public to pay their respects from a distance and avoid crowds gathering against both the Palace and the government's advice, as seen by people laying flowers outside royal residences on the day of the announcement.

That being said, here's how to watch Prince Philip's funeral:

When does it start?

Prince Philip's funeral - dubbed Operation Forth Bridge - will take place this Saturday, April 17. The service will start at 3pm and marked with a minute's silence, which will be observed across the country in remembrance of the Duke.

What channels will it be on?

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Coverage will start across the board before the service begins at 3pm. Although the BBC have yet to confirm their official schedule, ITV will also be showing the funeral from 1:15pm. Regular programming is scheduled to return to normal from 4:30pm onwards.

Sky News will also be covering the memorial throughout the day on terrestrial TV and their YouTube. It is possible that the BBC will provide a similar service on their channel and through the BBC News app.

In terms of radio broadcasts, it is likely that most BBC radio stations - Radio 3 and 4 in particular - will likely move away from their usual schedule to provide audio coverage of the funeral, though nothing has yet been confirmed.

Where will it take place?

The funeral itself will be conducted at St. George's Chapel, the private church located within the grounds of Windsor Castle.

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St. George's Chapel in Windsor Castle

Ahead of the service starting, the coffin (draped in Prince Philip's personal flag) will be loaded into the funeral car - a specially modified Land Rover which the Duke, himself, helped design. The vehicle will then leave from Windsor Castle's State Entrance at 2:40pm and start along the procession route.

The procession

The procession itself will start at 2:45pm, as the car makes its journey towards St. George's Chapel. Members of the Royal Family will follow behind the Land Rover and the route will be lined with members from all military branches: the Royal Navy (in which Prince Philip served) and the Royal Marines; the Royal Air Force (RAF) and the Highlanders, 4th Battalion Royal Regiment of Scotland.

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Prince Philip's modified Land Rover defender funeral car

The journey to St. George's will last eight minutes, with gun salutes being fired by the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery from the East Lawn of Windsor Castle, and the Curfew Tower Bell will be tolled from the West simultaneously throughout.

Once it arrives at the West Steps of the chapel at 2:53pm, it will be met by a guard of honour and band from The Rifles, who will play the national anthem being played as the casket enters the Horseshoe Cloister.

A bearing party (pallbearers) from the Royal Marines will then carry the coffin up the steps, while the Household Cavalry line the steps and a Royal Navy "piping party" will play a nautical tune known as "the Still", before pausing for the minute’s silence.

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Following the minute’s silence, the Dean of Windsor and the Archbishop of Canterbury will receive the coffin - also decorated with a wreath of flowers, as well as his naval cap and sword - as it is carried into St. George's, and the ceremony proper will begin.

Who will be in attendance?

Aside from the obvious attendance of Queen Elizabeth II herself, there a number of other faces will be included in the maximum of 30 guests. The i newspaper recently published the confirmed list of those who will pay their respect at the funeral:

  • The Queen
  • The Prince of Wales
  • The Duchess of Cornwall
  • The Duke of Cambridge
  • The Duchess of Cambridge
  • The Duke of Sussex
  • The Duke of York
  • Princess Beatrice
  • Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi
  • Princess Eugenie
  • Jack Brooksbank
  • The Earl of Wessex
  • The Countess of Wessex
  • Lady Louise Windsor
  • Viscount Severn
  • The Princess Royal
  • Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence
  • Peter Phillips
  • Zara Phillips
  • Mike Tindall
  • Earl of Snowdon
  • Lady Sarah Chatto
  • Daniel Chatto
  • Duke of Gloucester
  • Duke of Kent
  • Princess Alexandra
  • Bernhard, Hereditary Prince of Baden
  • Prince Donatus, Landgrave of Hesse
  • Prince Philipp of Hohenlohe-Langenburg
  • The Countess Mountbatten of Burma

While the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince William and Kate Middleton, were always likely to be part of the ceremony, the recent developments following the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's high-profile interview meant it was still unclear whether they would be present or not.

Although Prince Harry has now been confirmed, Meghan Markle will not be joining him, citing her pregnancy as the reason for her absence. As you can see, Prime Minister Boris Johnson, will not be attending the ceremony either.

Of those in attendance, each guest will be required to wear a protective face-covering and sit two metres apart in accordance with ongoing Covid-19 guidelines.

What happens after Prince Phillip's funeral?

Once the funeral itself has concluded, Prince Philip’s body is expected to lie at St. James’ Palace for a period of days.

While this would usually take place in Westminster Hall - allowing the general public to come and pay their respects - as mentioned, the Duke will only be viewed by his family on this occasion.

Frogmore Gardens Estate Mausoleoum

It is believed that the Duke will be buried in Frogmore Gardens, the Royal Burial Ground located inside Frogmore Estate and within Windsor Castle. It has been the burial site for several members of the Royal Family (consorts, in particular), including Queen Victoria, Prince Albert, Edward VIII and many others.