Prince Philip funeral: Queen arrives for service
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The monarch, 94, arrived in the state Bentley outside St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle alongside a lady-in-waiting to say a final farewell to the Duke of Edinburgh. She was greeted by the Dean of Windsor as her close aide stepped out of view before walking towards the door of the church.
Body language expert Judi James pointed out the brief moment when Her Majesty turned to look back towards the funeral procession as if for reassurance.
She suggested this might have been because the Queen was daunted by having to head into the chapel alone.
Ms James told Mail Online: “There was one moment when she paused and turned around before entering the chapel and it looked terribly poignant, almost as though she couldn’t face going in alone.
“She turned for what looked like reassurance that her party was behind her.”
After turning to glance in the direction of the procession, a ceremonial gunshot could be heard ringing out.
The Duchess of Cornwall, the Duchess of Cambridge and the Countess of Wessex stepped forward to follow the Queen into the chapel.
Other royals including Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie followed suit.
After being separated from her trusted lady-in-waiting the monarch sat alone in a pew as her husband’s casket was carried in by pallbearers.
Lady Susan Hussey, 81, has a strong bond with the Queen, having served her for decades.
She was also in the chapel during the funeral but not as one of the 30 royal guests, but rather as a member of Philip’s household staff.
Some royal fans felt outraged that Covid restrictions had meant the monarch had to sit alone at the sad family gathering.
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One tweeted: “This idea that Boris Johnson is forcing the queen to sit alone is hogwash.”
A second critic of the coronavirus rules said: “There was no need for the Queen to sit alone.”
And Piers Morgan said it was “heartbreakingly sad” that Her Majesty could not have a companion beside her during the Covid-secure service.
Following the televised funeral on Saturday, the royals will continue to grieve this week, although the period of national mourning has ended.
After almost 70 years as head of state, the Queen will reign without her husband by her side.
On Wednesday the sovereign will turn 95 but any sort of celebration is highly unlikely given the circumstances.
The Queen chose a wreath of white flowers to honour her husband of more than 73 years and her handwritten card was on it.
The floral tribute was seen inside the church alongside a wreath from the Duchess of Sussex, who remained in the US after doctors advised her not to fly.
The Duke of Sussex made the trip alone and joined Prince William, Prince Charles and other senior royals in walking behind the duke’s coffin to the chapel.
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