Details of the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral are expected to be released this weekend after his death on Friday at the age of 99.
Buckingham Palace said Philip died peacefully in his sleep at Windsor Castle and that the Queen and the Royal Family “mourned his loss”.
There will be no lie in the state and no state funeral for Philip, according to his wishes.
His ceremonial royal burial and funeral are expected to take place at St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle.
But the coronavirus pandemic – with mass gatherings banned and England under national lockdown – means exact plans for the aftermath of Philip’s death had to change, with public elements removed to prevent crowds from gathering.
Flags are already flying at half mast in UK government buildings in honor of the Duke and will continue to do so until the morning after his funeral.
The public was asked not to gather in royal residences or leave flower tributes, but instead to donate to charity.
The details of Philip’s funeral on television are slated to be officially announced this weekend. Buckingham Palace staff must consider how to manage them during the worst public health crisis in generations.
The Queen has final approval of the plans – code named Forth Bridge – and will review the amended regulations.
The date has yet to be confirmed, but the funeral was originally scheduled to take place eight days after Philip’s death, on April 17th – just four days before the Queen’s 95th birthday on April 21st.
The Duke’s children and older grandchildren may have walked the streets behind the coffin, much like the processions for the funerals of Diana, Princess of Wales and the Queen Mother – but anything that has the potential to draw a crowd will not take longer Place.
The Lord Chamberlain, Baron Parker of Minsmere, will oversee the longstanding master plan and the days before it. The office of Lord Chamberlain, under the direction of the Queen’s Comptroller, sets the carefully coordinated program of events in motion.
Philip helped create the original details himself and was determined that there should be a minimum of fuss.
Behind the scenes, helpers and household staff will be busy implementing the plans.
The guest list
Only 30 people – in addition to the clergy – are allowed to attend Philip’s funeral.
It was originally planned for 800 guests, but now has to take into account the strict number of guests during the pandemic.
The queen has to decide which family members she wants to invite.
The Duke of Sussex is likely to be traveling back from the US to attend.
Gun salutes on Philip’s death will take place across the UK, Gibraltar and at sea on Saturday.
Saluting batteries will fire 41 rounds per round from noon in cities such as London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast, as well as in Gibraltar and from warships of the Royal Navy, the Ministry of Defense said.
Mourning the royal family
The Queen must also decide whether the royal family will enter the mourning at court – dressed in black and with writing paper bordered in black – or the alternative, shorter family mourning – dressed in black – and how long it will last .
Some official engagements may continue, but community engagements – most of them put on hold because of the pandemic anyway – are usually canceled after the death of a senior royal family member, unless it goes to charitable causes.
The mourning for the Queen Mother in 2002 lasted three weeks.
The government decides on the length of a national mourning, which usually lasts until the day after the funeral.
A nationwide two minute silence could take place, as was the case for the Queen Mother on the day of her funeral.
houses of Parliament
Parliament is being called back from its Easter break so that MPs and colleagues can pay tribute to the Duke.
Downing Street and Parliament officials confirmed the move to convene the House of Commons again on Monday, a day ahead of schedule.
The House of Commons is expected to meet on Monday from 2.30 p.m.
Queen can address the nation
The Queen can record a televised address in honor of her husband just like she did for the Queen Mother in 2002, but it will depend on how she feels.
The rest of Philip’s family are likely to publish their own statements about the royal patriarch in the coming days.
The website of the royal family honors the duke with memorial pages.
Online condolence book
The royal family’s official website has opened an online condolence book instead of traditional books for people to sign across the country because of the pandemic.
Television and media
TV networks scrapped their schedules to make way for an evening of honors, and news of Philip’s death hit headlines around the world.
Numerous broadcasters gathered near Buckingham Palace to report on the developments.
The funeral is expected to be broadcast live on the BBC and other networks.
Coffin in peace
Traditionally, the Duke’s coffin would have been taken to the Chapel Royal at St James’s Palace to be left alone for a few days, but currently it remains at Windsor Castle.
It is unlikely to be dragged away from Windsor for fear of attracting crowds.
The Queen retired to Windsor for the embargo, so events will undoubtedly focus on that instead.
The monarch and royal family will pay their respects in private, as will the household staff.
Philip’s children are likely to have a private vigil around the coffin at some point if restrictions allow.
The Duke’s funeral was to have a strong military presence in recognition of his maritime career and ties to the armed forces.
However, the prospect of creating a spectacle that could potentially attract hundreds of thousands of people means that no more military processions or processions through Windsor are to be expected in London.
Military participation is expected to take place on the grounds of Windsor Castle.
The participating soldiers and women will quickly begin their preparations, from routine to polishing helmets and swords.
Royal dressers will carefully select and prepare black mourning ensembles.
The Thames Valley Police are tasked with ensuring the necessary security in the coming days and preventing mass gatherings.
Lying in the state
The Duke’s coffin will not be in the same state.
This has long been reported as a plan, but amid the Covid-19 pandemic, it has the added benefit of relieving the government and royal household of a number of logistical nightmares.
The Queen Mother – the sovereign’s last consort to die – resided in the state at Westminster Hall, allowing hundreds of thousands of people who queued for hours to come by to pay their respects.
But Philip always insisted that he didn’t want that honor.
The Duke is expected to be buried on the same day as the funeral in the royal vault in St. George’s Chapel.
This funeral service will be private and attended by the Queen and senior members of the royal family.
No memorial service
In accordance with Philip’s wishes, there will be no official memorial service.
However, this could change due to the reduced funeral – but only with the consent of the queen.