Everything you need to know about how Prince Philip's funeral will unfold on Saturday04/12/2021
PRINCE Philip’s funeral will take place on Saturday, with Charles leading a procession to St George's chapel at Windsor Castle.
With just five days to go, the royal household is working round the clock to ensure everything is ready for the historic occasion.
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In line with the Duke's wishes, he will be laid to rest in a ceremonial – rather than state – funeral.
There will be no public procession as a result of the Covid restrictions – which allow a maximum of 30 guests – and the entire service will take place in the grounds of the castle.
However, the Grenadier Guards and others from The Foot Guards, as well as the Royal Marines, the Household Cavalry, Royal Gurkha Rifles and a Royal Naval Piping Party of 1 Chief Petty Officer and 5 Ratings, are just some of those who will be taking part in the grounds of Windsor.
The service will begin with a ceremonial procession, setting off from the state entrance at 2.45pm with the Prince of Wales and members of Royal Family following on foot behind Philip's coffin.
A modified Land Rover – which Philip helped to design – will be used to transport the duke's coffin and before this, it will be serviced, tested and buffed.
The driver will also no doubt be practising for the slow eight-minute procession, which will lead the Prince of Wales and other royals on foot to the west door of the chapel.
Philip's body is currently resting in Windsor's private chapel.
His coffin will be moved to the state entrance of the castle on Saturday by a bearer party from the Grenadier Guards – the elite Queen's Company regiment at Windsor, of which Philip was Colonel for 42 years.
It will be draped with his personal standard, and decorated with a wreath of flowers and his Naval cap and sword.
The hearse will be flanked by pallbearers drawn from the Duke's special relationships, including the Royal Marines.
And the funeral service will begin as the coffin is brought in.
Only members of the Royal Family, plus the Duke's own private secretary, the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby, the Dean of Windsor and the pallbearers, will be permitted to enter along with the coffin.
It's certain that the Queen's four children will attend with their four spouses – Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles; Princess Anne and Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence; Prince Andrew; and Prince Edward and Sophie Wessex.
Prince Philip's eight grandchildren are also likely to be chosen as a guest at the funeral – Peter Phillips, Zara Tindall, Prince William, Prince Harry, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie, Lady Louise Windsor and Viscount Severn.
Prince William's spouse Kate Middleton is expected to attend as she is a future queen.
Pregnant Meghan Markle, however, remains at home in LA after medics said she shouldn't travel – although Prince Harry has returned for the service.
Other spouses of the grandchildren may also attend to support their loved ones – Mike Tindall, Jack Brooksbank and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi.
Ahead of the service, Angela Kelly, the Queen's senior dresser, will prepare the monarch's black mourning ensembles, as will other household staff for the rest of the royal family – along with their necessary black face masks.
The Queen, meanwhile, is being cared for at Windsor by a reduced number of around 22 staff in what has been dubbed HMS Bubble.
She will have to decide whether to deliver a televised message in tribute to her beloved husband.
The Queen has approved Boris Johnson's recommendation to have a period of national mourning starting on Friday April 9 and ending on Saturday April 17.
The Royal Family will also observe two weeks of mourning – and union flags flying at half-mast at royal residences will remain at half-mast until the day after the funeral.
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