London, Apr 16 (PTI) The much-talked-about feud between the brothers, Princes William and Harry, was thrown into focus again as the running order for their grandfather Prince Philip's funeral on Saturday confirmed that they would not be walking side by side in the procession.
The cousin of the royals, Peter Phillips – the son of Queen Elizabeth II’s daughter Princess Anne, will walk in between as they follow the specially-designed Land Rover which will carry the coffin of Prince Philip – the Duke of Edinburgh through Windsor Castle.
There have been widespread reports of an estrangement between 38-year-old William, the second in line to the British throne, and his younger brother Harry, 36, ever since he stepped back from frontline royal duties and relocated to the US with wife Meghan Markle.
Details of the ceremonial funeral released by Buckingham Palace on Thursday confirmed the others in the procession to St George’s Chapel as all four children of the late royal: Prince Charles – the Prince of Wales, Princess Anne – the Princess Royal, Prince Andrew – the Duke of York, and Prince Edward – the Earl of Wessex and Forfar.
“The congregation will wear masks for the Service and Members of the Royal Family will wear Day Dress or Morning Coat with medals,” the palace statement said, in reference to the scaled-back arrangements in keeping with the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions.
“During the Service, a small choir of four will sing pieces of music chosen by the Duke of Edinburgh. The choir will be located in the Nave, away from the seated congregation, and in line with public health guidelines there will be no congregational singing.
The Funeral Service will be conducted by the Dean of Windsor, and is expected to last for approximately 50 minutes,” it said.
The Queen will travel in the State Bentley in the procession, behind the family members on foot, before entering by a side door to the chapel. Inside, she will be seated by herself under the social distancing guidelines.
The ceremony, which was originally designed for a gathering of 800, will have just 30 guests comprising close family and the other guests on the limited guest list include Prince Charles’ wife Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Prince William’s wife Kate Middleton, all of Prince Philip’s grandchildren and their spouses, and the children of the Queen's sister Princess Margaret.
From the Duke’s German heritage, the guests include Bernhard, the Hereditary Prince of Baden; Donatus, Prince and Landgrave of Hesse; and Prince Philipp of Hohenlohe-Langenburg. Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, the husband of Princess Anne, and the Earl of Snowdon, the son of the Queen sister, will also be among those who follow the funeral procession.
The Countess Mountbatten of Burma, previously known as Lady Romsey and Lady Brabourne, who was one of Prince Philip's closest friends will also be in attendance.
Prince Philip, who died aged 99 on April 9, is said to have planned his funeral with military precision and Buckingham Palace said the arrangements are in keeping with his wishes despite being scaled back.
“Due to the current public health guidelines, some elements of the Funeral plan have been modified, although the day will still be very much in line with His Royal Highness’ wishes. The funeral will be broadcast live on TV and radio to allow people around the world to take part in mourning the Duke,” the palace said.
On Saturday, at 1440 local time the coffin will emerge from the State Entrance of Windsor Castle into the Quadrangle and placed onto the bespoke Land Rover Defender TD5 130 – designed by the Duke as part of a project spanning 16 years.
As someone who served with distinction in World War II and held special associations with all the armed forces, he requested that the original Belize Green bodywork be switched to Dark Bronze Green, a colour used for many military Land Rovers.
There will be a significant military theme to the funeral as the procession route will be lined by representatives from the Royal Navy, the Royal Marines, the Highlanders, and 4th Battalion Royal Regiment of Scotland and the Royal Air Force. Minute Guns will be fired by the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery from the East Lawn of Windsor Castle for the duration of the procession.
The National Anthem will play as the coffin arrives at Horseshoe Cloister, to be met by representatives from the Commonwealth and a Dismounted Detachment of the Household Cavalry. The Bearer Party will carry the coffin up the West Steps of the Chapel before pausing for a National Minute Silence at 1500 local time and the Dean of Windsor and the Archbishop of Canterbury will then receive the coffin.
A selection of military medals, picked by the Duke himself, will appear on the altar inside the chapel.
At the conclusion of the Service, the Duke of Edinburgh’s Coffin will be lowered into the Royal Vault. The Archbishop of Canterbury will pronounce the blessing and the National Anthem will be sung by the choir.
Rehearsals for the ceremonial funeral took place during the week at Pirbright Barracks in Surrey, where a parade ground was marked out to represent the Quadrangle in Windsor Castle. PTI AK PMS PMS