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Saturday Apr 17 2021

Queen Elizabeth to bid farewell to Prince Philip


Queen Elizabeth will bid a final farewell to Prince Philip, her husband of more than seven decades, at a ceremonial funeral on Saturday, with the nation set to hold a minute's silence to mark the passing of a pivotal figure in the British monarchy.

The coffin of Philip, who died aged 99 on April 9 at Windsor Castle, will be driven to the funeral at St George's Chapel in the castle on a specially modified Land Rover.

Prince Charles, heir to the throne, and Philip's other three children will walk behind in procession. Prince William and his brother Prince Harry - who has returned from the United States to attend - will walk separated by their cousin Peter Phillips.

The queen, who says the death has left a huge void, will be driven behind in the State Bentley. In the service, which starts at 3 p.m. (1400 GMT), the 94-year-old monarch will stand alone due to COVID-19 restrictions as her husband's coffin is lowered into the Royal Vault of the ancient chapel.

"She's the queen, she will behave with the extraordinary dignity and extraordinary courage that she always does. And at the same time, she is saying farewell to someone to who she was married for 73 years," said Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, who will help officiate at the service.

Philip, who married Elizabeth in 1947, helped the young queen adapt the monarchy to the changing world of the post-World War Two era as the loss of empire and the decline of deference challenged the world's most prominent royal family.