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Prince Philip’s Funeral: Prince William And Prince Harry Will Walk Separately; Queen Will Sit Alone

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The final arrangements for Prince Philip’s funeral have been announced. The Duke of Edinburgh passed away earlier this month at the age of 99 after a long spate of ill health and will be remembered in a televised procession on Saturday, April 17 in the UK. Buckingham Palace revealed that the service would be very different than any other royal funeral due to the COVID-19 situation, which prohibits more than 30 people at such events. However, there’s much else that can be gleaned from the way things will play out.

Prince William and Prince Harry will walk separately. As The Guardian reports, the Dukes of Cambridge and Sussex will not walk together as part of the procession but rather away from one another, a decision which is said to be handed down from Queen Elizabeth II herself. While the Palace refuses to be drawn on “perceptions of drama,” the fact that the brothers will be separated by their cousin Peter Phillips will likely spur even more rumors about their troubled relationship.

The Queen may very well end up sitting alone. While you would think this would be the time she would want to be surrounded by her closest family after the loss of her husband, the arrangements the Queen has made will likely mean she will sit alone throughout the service, which will be held at St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle, due to social distancing guidelines. “The arrangements have been agreed, and they represent Her Majesty’s wishes,” a royal spokesperson said.

No one in the royal family will be wearing military uniforms. Despite the fact that many members of the royal family have served in various branches of the military, it was agreed that no members of the royal family will wear the ceremonial uniforms relevant to their honorary ranks. This decision is rumored to have been a kindness to Prince Harry, who was stripped of his rankings after deciding to step back from official duty as a working member of the royal family. “Members of the royal family will be wearing morning coat with medals or day dress. That’s to say members of the royal family will not be in military uniform,” the spokesperson said.

All 30 guests will remain masked throughout the ceremony. They will also be seated in family bubbles at least two meters apart from other members of the family with whom they do not live. No further seating plan has been announced.

There will be a choir and a group of buglers. The choir of four will sing music chosen by the late Prince Philip, though they will be placed in the nave of the chapel, away from the seated guests. In addition, the attendees will not be permitted to sing along. Buglers and trumpeters will also play a role in the ceremony, sounding the last post and the reveille respectively. “At its heart, it is still a family event. We are following the Covid guidelines. There is a limit on who could be invited as a guest and Her Majesty wanted to ensure that all branches of the duke’s family were there and had to make some very difficult decisions about who would be there,” a spokesperson said.

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