Prince Philip’s ‘unwavering loyalty’ to Queen to be praised in Windsor Castle funeral

Prince Philip’s “unwavering loyalty” to the Queen will be praised at his funeral, as well as the duke’s “courage, fortitude and faith”.

Although there is no sermon – as per the Duke of Edinburgh’s request – the service will be a highly religious one.

Watch and follow live coverage of Prince Philip's funeral service on Sky News from 12.30pm on Saturday.

During Saturday’s ceremony, several hymns will be sung by a small chorus of three choristers and a soprano, and there will also be a series of bible passages read out.

Among the songs picked out is the hymn Eternal Father, Strong To Save, traditionally associated with members of the navy like the Duke of Edinburgh.

It was also sung at the funeral of his beloved uncle, Earl Mountbatten of Burma, who was murdered by the IRA in 1979.

No members of the Royal Family will give a reading, and attendees have also been forbidden from singing.

The congregation has been limited to just 30 people due to coronavirus restrictions.

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Among the attendees will be the Prince of Wales and his wife the Duchess of Cornwall, the Queen and Philip’s other children, their grandchildren including the Duke of Cambridge and Harry, three of Philip’s German relatives, three of the Queen’s cousins and Philip’s carriage driving companion Countess Mountbatten of Burma

Prime Minister Boris Johnson will watch the service on a television from Chequers.

Social distancing will be observed, and masks will be worn during the service.

The Queen will sit alone during the funeral for her husband of more than 70 years, who died Friday 9 April.

In the Bidding, the Dean of Windsor will say: “With grateful hearts, we remember the many ways in which his long life has been a blessing to us.”

“We have been inspired by his unwavering loyalty to our Queen, by his service to the Nation and the Commonwealth, by his courage, fortitude and faith.

The route of Prince Philip's funeral procession.
The route of Prince Philip’s funeral procession, with St George’s Chapel the bottom

“Our lives have been enriched through the challenges that he has set us, the encouragement that he has given us, his kindness, humour and humanity.”

There will be no eulogy, and no members of the Royal Family will read lessons or give a reading.

This is similar to the order of service for the Queen Mother’s funeral in 2002.

Not having a lingering funeral was also in line with the duke’s wishes.

Earlier this week, Harry said of his grandfather: “I know that right now he would say to all of us, beer in hand, ‘Oh do get on with it!'”

Harry and William will not walk next to each other during the funeral procession.

The brothers will be separated by their cousin Peter Phillips as they walk behind their grandfather’s coffin which will be carried by a Land Rover hearse designed by Prince Philip himself.

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Proceedings get underway at 3pm with a nationwide minute’s silence.

Nearby Heathrow Airport has said it will not land planes for six minutes to coincide with the period of quiet.