The Duke of Edinburgh passed away peacefully on 9 April, two months before his 100th birthday. The funeral service began on Saturday at 3pm local time after a national minute of silence. In line with the royal’s wishes, there will be no state funeral or sermon.
Police will be looking into potential threats to members of the royal family during the funeral of Prince Philip, The Daily Star reported, citing Graham Wettone, a Metropolitan Police veteran. According to him, any state event, including funerals, requires a threat assessment with law enforcement officers preparing for different situations.
“They’ll be looking at the usual threat assessments and liaising with the security services – threats to the Royal Family, threats to the state, threats to people attending”, Wettone told the newspaper.
Although the ceremony was scaled down due to the coronavirus restrictions and only 30 people will attend the service, a significant security operation will be in place to make sure the venue is secure and to prevent people from trying to get in, Welltone said.
According to The Daily Star, the Thames Police have deployed armed and mounted officers, erected a steel barrier, and have implemented number plate checks as part of the security operation. In addition, local officials set up a ring of steel around the venue where the funeral will take place and asked members of the public to keep their distance.
Previously, authorities encouraged Brits to make donations to charity instead of laying floral tributes at Windsor Castle and other royal venues.
Details of the Funeral
The ceremony began at 3pm local time following a national minute of silence. The coffin was transported from Windsor Castle in a Land Rover that the Duke of Edinburgh had himself designed over the course of 16 years.
Members of the British Armed Forces were lined up along the route and fired guns in salute. The Duke’s four children – Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, and Prince Edward – walked alongside the hearse together with Prince Philip’s grandsons – Prince William and Prince Harry. The latter arrived in Britain last Sunday and has been isolating at Frogmore Cottage in line with coronavirus restrictions. His wife, Meghan Markle, who is pregnant with a second child, will not attend the funeral due to medical advice.
In line with the UK’s current coronavirus rules, 30 people attended the funeral. The procession headed to St George’s Chapel, where the Dean of Windsor conducted a service. During the ceremony, a small choir of four sang pieces of music chosen by the Duke of Edinburgh. Following the service, the royal was interred in the Royal Vault.