Minute-by-minute, the Duke of Edinburgh‘s funeral has been planned with military precision and nothing has been left to chance.
From the moment his coffin is brought out of the State Entrance of Windsor Castle and placed on the back of the Land Rover he had specially designed for the occasion, to the closing echoes of the National Anthem as his body is lowered into the Royal Vault at St George’s Chapel, it has been designed to reflect his proud military heritage, remarkable life and lasting endeavours.
Here is your in-depth guide to the day.
11am The Duke of Edinburgh’s coffin, draped in his personal standard, with his naval cap and sword and a wreath of family flowers placed on top of it, will be moved from the Private Chapel at Windsor Castle, where he has been lying at rest since Friday, to the Inner Hall.
This is located between the North Terrace and the State Entrance to the royal residence.
It will be moved by a Bearer Party comprised by The Queen’s Company, 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards.
2pm The Lord Chamberlain, the Constable and Governor of Windsor Castle and the Dean of Windsor arrive in the Inner Hall.
2.10pmThe Dean of Windsor will say prayers before departing by car to St George’s Chapel to officiate.
Heads bowed: Royal Marines rehearse in Fareham, Hampshire
Tribute: Band of the Grenadier guards leaves Windsor Castle after a walk-through last Saturday
by 2.15pm All service detachments recognising Philip’s special military relationships will be in position in the castle Quadrangle, having formed up on Frogmore Drive and Mausoleum Road.
These include the: Royal Navy; Royal Marines; Band of the Royal Marines; Royal Fleet Auxiliary; The Queen’s Royal Hussars (The Queen’s Own and Royal Irish); Grenadier, Coldstream and Welsh Guards; The Highlanders, 4th Battalion; The Royal Regiment of Scotland; Royal Gurkha Rifles; The Rifles; REME; Intelligence Corps; Royal Air Force; Guidon, Colour and Truncheon Parties; military bands.
The Quadrangle will also be lined by the Household Cavalry and The Foot Guards.
2.17pm The Band of the Grenadier Guards will take position in Engine Court.
2.20-2.27pm Members of the Royal Family, The Duke of Edinburgh’s family and his close friend Countess Mountbatten of Burma, who are not taking part in the Procession, will depart Windsor Castle by car for St George’s Chapel, a short drive down the hill.
From 2.27pm the Bands in the Quadrangle will play music.
His coffin will be brought out of the State Entrance of Windsor Castle and placed on the back of the Land Rover he had specially designed for the occasion (pictured)
Golden goodbye: Members of the Queen’s Body Guard
2.27pm The Land Rover, upon which the coffin will be placed, will enter the Quadrangle via the King George IV Gate and will proceed anti-clockwise around the Quadrangle to the Equerries’ Entrance.
The Service Chiefs, Major General Commanding the Household Division and his staff depart from the Equerries Entrance and take their position by the State Entrance, facing the Land Rover.
The Pall Bearers depart from the Equerries Entrance and take up position either side of the Land Rover before continuing to the State Entrance.
2.38pm The Coffin will be lifted by the Bearer Party formed by The Queen’s Company, 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards in the Inner Hall.
2.40pm The Bands in the Quadrangle will stop playing and The Duke of Edinburgh’s Household – his small team of loyal staff including his Metropolitan Police Protection Officer, Private Secretary Archie Miller Bakewell, two valets and two pages – will take up their positions in the procession, leaving from the Undercroft via the Steward’s Door.
Respect: King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery
Sailors in rehearsals for the funeral of His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh
2.41pm The Coffin will emerge from the State Entrance. Members of the Royal Family walking in the procession will depart the State Entrance following the coffin and take up their positions. They are the Prince of Wales, The Princess Royal, the Duke of York and the Earl of Wessex, the Duke of Cambridge, the Duke of Sussex and Peter Phillips, Princess Anne’s son.
They will be accompanied by Earl Snowdon, Princess Margaret’s son, and Vice Admiral Timothy Laurence, the husband of Princess Anne.
The Service Detachments, Service Chiefs, Pall Bearers, the Major General Commanding the Household Division and his Staff will give a Royal Salute. The Bearer Party will place the coffin onto the Land Rover.
2.44pm The Queen, attended by a Lady-in-Waiting, will depart from the Sovereign’s Entrance in the State Bentley. The National Anthem will be played.
Action stations! Stirring bugle call he requested
Rehearsal: Sgt Bugler Ritchie
Action Stations, which is sounded on naval warships to signal all hands must go to battle stations, will be played at the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral at his specific request.
Buglers of the Royal Marines will perform the wartime alert in honour of Philip’s active service in the Royal Navy during the Second World War.
The Last Post will also be played to signify ‘a soldier has gone to his final rest’.
Towards the end of the service, the four buglers will be led by Royal Marine Sergeant Bugler Jamie Ritchie, 31.
The duke wanted the call to echo around St George’s Chapel at his funeral.
A Palace spokesman said: ‘It is a fitting testimony to remind many people who might not realise that the duke saw active service in the Second World War aboard a ship in the Royal Navy.’
As the Queen’s Bentley draws up behind her late husband’s coffin, at the rear of the procession, it will pause briefly – offering a moment of contemplative reflection for the monarch, who is mourning the loss of her husband of 73 years – as those in the procession turn to face the direction of travel.
2.45pm The Procession ‘step off’ on the eight-minute journey to the chapel.
Minute Guns will be fired by The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery from the East Lawn for the duration of the Procession. A Curfew Tower Bell will sound.
Members of the Royal Family already at St George’s Chapel will stand outside the Galilee Porch to view the procession.
The State Bentley, at the rear of the procession, will stop outside the Galilee Porch, where the Queen will be received by the Dean of Windsor.
The Queen and her guests will then take their seats in the Quire.The procession will continue to Horseshoe Cloister without stopping, where the Windsor Castle Guard will give a Royal Salute. The Rifles Guard of Honour, positioned in Horseshoe Cloister, will also give a Royal Salute. As the National Anthem is played, officials will turn to face the coffin.
2.53pm The Land Rover will arrive at the foot of the West Steps of St. George’s Chapel. A Royal Navy Piping Party will pipe the ‘Still’ once the Land Rover comes to a stop. A Bearer Party, comprised of Royal Marines, will lift the coffin from the Land Rover as the Piping Party pipe the ‘Side’.
The coffin will then be carried up the West Steps and halt on the Second Landing. Members of the Royal Family will take their positions at the foot of the West Steps for the National Minute’s Silence, signalled by a gun fired by The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery from the East Lawns.
Afterwards the Dean of Windsor, together with the Archbishop of Canterbury, will receive the coffin at the top of the steps, followed by members of The Royal Family. Before entering St George’s Chapel, members of the Royal Family who have walked in the procession will all put on facemasks to comply with government Covid regulations.
The coffin will then move through the Nave to the catafalque in the Quire for the funeral service conducted by the Dean of Windsor.
3pm The service begins and will include Lament played by a Pipe Major of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, The Last Post by Buglers of the Royal Marines – signifying a soldier ‘has gone to his final rest’ – and the Reveille sounded by the State Trumpeters of the Household Cavalry.
At Philip’s personal request The Buglers of the Royal Marines will sound Action Stations, which is sounded on naval warships to signal all hands must go to battle stations. Its sound will echo around the chapel.
A senior palace official said: ‘I think it just goes to show the level of detail that the duke went into around his own funeral service.
‘It is a fitting testimony to remind many people who might not realise that the duke saw active service in the Second World War aboard a ship in the Royal Navy.’ Indeed as a young officer, Philip was mentioned in dispatches in the decisive Battle of Cape Matapan against the Italian fleet in March 1941.
The Archbishop of Canterbury will pronounce the Blessing, after which the National Anthem will be sung by the four singers present.
Philip’s coffin will then be lowered into the Royal Vault, hidden under a marble slab – which is pulled up by using a narrow cord hidden in the grouting – and accessed by an electric lift, which has a second mechanical operating system in case of failure.
3.50pm At the end of the service, The Queen, members of the Royal Family and The Duke of Edinburgh’s family will leave the Chapel via the Galilee Porch and return to Windsor Castle. Officials have declined to say what will happen in terms of a wake, saying it would be ‘private’ family moment.
A fitting tribute to the Duke of design
Rugged but painted a gleaming dark green, this is the Land Rover designed by Prince Philip for his funeral.
The modified Land Rover Defender TD5 130 was unveiled yesterday and is a fitting tribute to his passion for innovation and design.
The duke helped design the vehicle in a project which spanned 16 years and was code named Operation Forth Bridge.
Rugged but painted a gleaming dark green, this is the Land Rover designed by Prince Philip for his funeral
It has features to keep the coffin in place and a custom paint job – all requested by the duke.
He started working with Land Rover on the vehicle in 2003, the year he turned 82.
The duke, who served in the Second World War and had special associations with all the forces, asked that the original Belize Green bodywork be switched to Dark Bronze Green, a colour used for many military vehicles.
Favoured 4×4: Philip and the Queen at Badminton in 1968
He also designed the rear section where his coffin will rest, making the final adjustments in 2019, the year he turned 98.
The Defender was made at Land Rover’s factory in Solihull and the company has maintained the vehicle since.
Thierry Bollore, Jaguar Land Rover’s chief executive said: ‘The duke was a tremendous champion for design, engineering and technology.’