Queen Elizabeth II and the members of the Royal family gathered at Westminster Abbey, this Tuesday, March 29, to pay tribute to Prince Philip. A moving religious ceremony marked by the absence of Prince Harry and Meghan Marke.
This Tuesday 29 March is a day rich in emotion for the royal family. Nearly a year ago, Prince Philip bowed out on April 9, 2021. Until the last breath of her husband, Queen Elizabeth II has always wanted to be at his side. And despite her health problems and her rare appearances, Her Majesty would not have missed for anything in the world the ceremony of homage given in honor of her late husband, at Westminster Abbey. To salute the memory of her great love, the 95-year-old sovereign wanted to participate in the preparations of this mass.
According to the DailyMail, the mother of Prince Charles helped write the speech and organize the entertainment desired by the deceased for his funeral. It is therefore alongside her son Prince Andrew that the Queen left Windsor Castle to take the direction of London, where the ceremony was held. This unexpected return of Andrew to the front row did not go unnoticed; his lawsuit for sexual assault is definitely abandoned, the ex-husband of Sarah Ferguson is alongside members of his family.
The ceremony was placed under the dignity of the tribute. Almost a year to the day after his death, Prince Philip is this time entitled to a highly royal event, with 1,800 guests, including the elite of the European monarchies. If the future king and his wife Camilla are in the front row, Prince William and Kate Middleton also wanted to be present at this mass after having shone during their official trip to the Caribbean. Peter Phillips and Zara Tindall, who were deeply affected by the loss of their grandfather, were also present alongside Princess Anne.
Other, less official, personalities were also in the assembly. Dressed in a pastel blue coat, Lady Penny, considered by some as “the second wife” of the late Duke of Edinburgh, appeared on the square of Westminster Abbey. On the other hand, the British had to make a cross on the arrival of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Not having a reliable enough security service in England, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex preferred to decline the invitation.
Tribute to Prince Philip: prestigious guests
If the official funeral of Prince Philip had been held behind closed doors last April, this year, the health restrictions related to the Covid-19 pandemic having been removed for the most part, the European nobility intends to make up for it.
Among those present, King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Sofia of Sweden are present at the event. King Felipe VI of Spain, another direct descendant of Queen Victoria – rightly called the “grandmother of Europe” – also came to pay tribute to his illustrious cousin, accompanied by his wife, Queen Letizia. On the political side, Prime Minister Boris Johnson is also in the church building.
The very discreet entrance of the Queen
Unlike all the guests, Queen Elizabeth II made a much more discreet entry. On the arm of Andrew, the sovereign arrived last in Wesminster Abbey. Refusing categorically to move in a wheelchair, the widow of Prince Philip was able to count on the support of her son to take his place in the front row. An appearance that once again raises serious questions about her health. Having some difficulties to move, Elizabeth is often accompanied by a cane. For once, the Queen showed herself to be dignified in front of the assembly.
Photo credits: PA Photos/ABACA