THE QUEEN is “bearing up well” amid final preparations for Prince Philip’s funeral tomorrow.
The monarch is said to be “in control” just 24 hours before the service at Windsor Castle – despite the rift between Prince William and Harry and a row over the Duke of York wearing a naval uniform.
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Prince Philip will make his final journey tomorrow in a Land Rover hearse he designed himself to St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle.
The grieving Queen will pause to gaze on her husband's coffin as it is lowered to its final resting place — a poignant last goodbye to her husband of 73 years.
An insider said the monarch is “bearing up well” ahead of the service, adding: “Final preparations going on today and she is in control.”
It comes despite a difficult week for the Queen, who has had to deal with the rift between Prince William and Harry as well as a feud over the Duke of York wearing a naval uniform.
It comes as…
- Prince Harry and William won't stand near each other at Philip's funeral on Saturday
- The full guest list of 30 attendees was revealed
- The Queen will sit alone after arriving in a Bentley with a Lady in Waiting
- The pall bearers at Prince Philip's funeral will be members of the Royal Marines
- Pregnant Meghan Markle will make 'private arrangements' to mark the funeral
- A band of military personnel will walk in front of Prince Philip's coffin
There was also said to be “serious Navy displeasure” at being dragged into the row, according to a royal expert.
Former BBC royal correspondent Jennie Bond said: "You have to feel sorry for the queen managing the sensibilities and the sensitivities of her family, not only over whether the boys should walk side-by-side, but also who should wear uniform.
"Andrew wanting to wear Admiral uniform to which he's not entitled, and Harry who would be embarrassed by not being able to wear a military uniform.
"She's had to think of all things, when honestly the poor lady is nearly 95 and just widowed, should not have to think about these things in my opinion."
Meanwhile, Prince William and Harry will not stand shoulder-to-shoulder at the ceremony, it was revealed this week.
Buckingham Palace revealed yesterday the warring brothers would be separated by their cousin Peter Phillips at the request of the Queen.
Due to Covid social-distancing rules, this means they will end up four metres apart during the eight-minute procession on Saturday.
And they will be separated for a second time as they head into St George's Chapel for the service – with William walking ahead.
Jennie Bond claims the decision to separate the pair is a "sad, lost opportunity" for their relationship to be repaired.
In line with the Duke of Edinburgh's wishes, he will be laid to rest in a ceremonial – rather than state – funeral tomorrow afternoon.
Action Stations, sounded on naval warships to signal all hands must go to battle stations, will be played at the request of the Duke.
Buglers of the Royal Marines will perform the wartime alert, a tradition sometimes associated with naval funerals, in honour of Philip's active service in the Royal Navy during the Second World War.
And the Last Post will be played to signify "a soldier has gone to his final rest".
A senior Palace official said: "Action Stations is a naval tradition and it is an announcement that would be made on a naval warship to signify that all hands, all those serving, on that warship should go into battle stations."
There will be no public procession as a result of the Covid restrictions – which allow a maximum of 30 guests – and the entire service will take place in the grounds of the castle.
The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby said he hoped the nation would offer their prayers and condolences to the Queen during the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral, rather than speculate on her wellbeing.
Speaking to the BBC, he said: "We really have to avoid judging from anything external.
"She is the Queen. She will behave with the extraordinary dignity and extraordinary courage that she always does.
"And at the same time she is saying farewell to someone to whom she was married for 73 years.
"I think that must be a very, very profound thing in anybody's life and I hope the whole nation, if they believe in that, they pray for her, and if they don't, they sympathise in their hearts, offer their condolences to her and they hope for her to find strength in what must be an anguished moment."
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