Buckingham Palace has announced that the Duke of Edinburgh has died.
Philip, 99, was the longest serving consort in British history.
As the nation digs up news of the Duke of Edinburgh’s death, behind the scenes detailed plans for his funeral will soon be put into action.
The arrangements are code-named Forth Bridge, after the Scottish landmark and UNESCO World Heritage Site.
There will be no lie in the state and no state funeral for Philip, according to his wishes.
His ceremonial royal funeral is expected to take place at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle.
Many members of the royal family and previous monarchs were buried in the chapel, including Queen Victoria, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.
According to some reports, the Duke is expected to be buried in the royal vault in St. George’s Chapel on the same day as the funeral.
However, in keeping with his more reserved funeral, it is also reported that the Duke of Edinburgh will be buried in Frogmore Gardens in the grounds of Windsor Castle.
This funeral service would be private and attended by the Queen and senior members of the royal family.
The coronavirus pandemic – with mass gatherings banned and England under national lockdown – means the exact plans for the aftermath of Philip’s death had to change.
Buckingham Palace will confirm arrangements for the Duke’s funeral the next day or so.
Diana, Princess of Wales, also received some form of ceremonial royal funeral despite being no longer an HRH.
After her death in 1997, plans had to be adjusted to reflect public reaction.
The route Diana’s coffin took on the way to Westminster Abbey was expanded to allow more people to pay their respects. In breach of the Convention, the Union flag was finally hoisted at half mast over Buckingham Palace amid the turmoil over the bare flagpole when the Queen was away from the residence.
The Duke’s own wishes for what happens after his death are taken into account, as are those of his family.
Ceremonial royal funerals are also held for the heir to the throne and members of the royal family who hold high military rank.
State funerals were rarely held for persons other than sovereigns, including Lord Nelson and the Prime Minister of the War, Sir Winston Churchill, by order of the monarch and through a vote in parliament that provided the funds.
Margaret Thatcher’s funeral in April 2013 was a solemn funeral in which her coffin was processioned to St Paul’s Cathedral on a gun cart drawn by six black horses.
To the outsider, there is little difference between a state and a ceremonial funeral.
Both a lying in the state – as the Queen Mother did, although Philip does not want it – and a military procession can involve.
The Duke’s funeral is under the direction of Lord Chamberlain – the highest official in the royal household.