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FeaturesThe Duke of Edinburgh

The Royal Family describes Prince Philip’s funeral as unique as they prepare to lay him to rest

By Aurelien Guichard from London, United Kingdom (changes by Rabanus Flavus) - File:St. Georges Chapel, Windsor Castle (1).jpg, CC BY-SA 2.0, Wikimedia Commons

The Royal Family has underlined the heavy input that the Duke of Edinburgh had in planning his own funeral as they prepare to lay him to rest.

As final details of the service were shared, the unique nature of the ceremony was emphasised while the music and words chosen to mark the final chapter in the royal story of Prince Philip made it clear just how involved he was in the organisation.

Music chosen for the ceremony includes the hymn ”For Those in Peril on the Sea”, forever associated with the Royal Navy with which Prince Philip saw active service in World War Two. He gave up his naval career to support his wife as she took on the role of Monarch but his association with the Armed Forces remained constant and vital to his royal work.

The official social media channels of the Royal Family focused on the military input to the funeral, saying that ”many of the moments choreographed by The Duke demonstrate his lifelong commitment to the Armed Forces.”

Prince Philip’s coffin will be carried by separate bearer parties during the service. One will be made up of Grenadier Guards while another will come from the Royal Marines, of which he was Captain General from 1953 until 2017. His last public engagement, before his retirement in August 2017, was with the Royal Marines.

The Duke of Edinburgh also had a major input in designing the specially adapted Land Rover on which his coffin will make its final journey. It will be placed on the vehicle at the start of the procession and be driven slowly to St. George’s Chapel followed by the Royal Family in procession. Prince Philip’s four children who will walk alongside the Land Rover. His eldest grandson, Peter Phillips, will lead the next phase with his cousins, the Duke of Cambridge and the Duke of Sussex on either side of him. The Queen will follow by car, accompanied by a Lady in Waiting.

As the service draws to a close, The Duke of Edinburgh will be laid to rest in the Royal Vault before his many titles are proclaimed inside the ancient walls of St. George’s Chapel. as the service ends, the Last Post will be played followed by Reveille. The last moments of Prince Philip’s funeral will see the buglers of the Royal Marines play ”Action Stations”, the call to arms used on board ships.

Prince Philip died on April 9th 2021 at Windsor Castle. He was 99 years old. His funeral takes place at St. George’s on the afternoon of April 17th 2021.

About author

Lydia Starbuck is Associate Editor at Royal Central and the main producer and presenter of the Royal Central Podcast and Royal Central Extra. Lydia is also a pen name of June Woolerton, a journalist and writer with over twenty years experience in TV, radio, print and online. June has been a reporter, producer and editor, picking up several awards over the years. She's appeared on outlets including BBC 5 Live, BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Local Radio and has also helped set up a commercial radio station. June is also an accomplished writer with a wide range of material published online and in print. She is the author of two novels, published as e-books. She is also a marriage registrar and ceremony celebrant.