The Queen set to return to work only days after Prince Philip’s funeral

Robert Jobson
·5-min read
<p>It was reported last night that a senior member of the <a href=

It was reported last night that a senior member of the

royal family would accompany the Queen to engagements.

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The hard-working Queen is poised to return to work just days after the funeral of the Duke of Edinburgh.

It is understood she will resume duties on April 22, a day after her 95th birthday.

Following touching tributes by Prince Philip’s grandsons William and Harry, the other royal grandchildren are expected to issue messages. Leading them will be Peter Phillips, Princess Anne’s son, who was particularly close to the duke.

It was reported last night that a senior member of the royal family would accompany the Queen to engagements. That could mean a greater role for the Duke of York’s daughters Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie.

Both are expected to pay tribute to Philip in the coming days, along with their cousin Zara Tindall and Prince Edward and Sophie’s children, Lady Louise Windsor, 17, and James, Viscount Severn, 13.

All of the grandchildren will attend the funeral, which is restricted to 30 people due to Covid restrictions.

It is understood Her Majesty is determined to carry on fulfilling her role as head of state and will be “fully supported” by Prince Charles, who she is set to honour by giving Philip’s title the Duke of Edinburgh, cementing his role as her liege and patriarch of the family.

In separate statements last night William and Harry paid tribute to their grandfather as it was hoped his passing could mark a reconciliation between the brothers.

William called Philip an “extraordinary man” who “would want us to get on with the job” — with some commentators taking that as being directed at Harry.

Harry issued a more light-hearted message, calling his grandfather “cheeky right ’til the end”.

While William spoke of service and underlined the importance of royal duty, Harry emphasised Philip’s charm, his wit and his mastery of the barbecue.

Harry’s statement also ended with four words that hinted of his own sense of loss at relinquishing his military titles this year: “Per Mare, Per Terram” or “by sea, by land”, the motto of the Royal Marines.

It was a reference to Philip’s role as captain general of the Royal Marines, a position he occupied for 64 years.

Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle said the fact that the Duke of Edinburgh “spanned all the generations” motivated many MPs to join in a day of tributes following his death at the age of 99.

Pay your respects from home, Windsor residents tell royal fans

Rachael Burford

Windsor residents today urged royal supporters to stay away when Prince Philip’s funeral takes place and pay their respects safely from home.

The Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral will be broadcast on TV on Saturday, with Prince Charles set to lead a procession to St George’s Chapel. Coronavirus guidelines mean just 30 family members are allowed to attend the event, which would usually see some 800 official guests and the streets lined with thousands of mourners.

However, Windsor residents have said they are fearing big crowds will descend on the city.

Georgina Russell, 25, left, a nurse who works in Windsor, said: “He was an amazing man and I want to see him have the send off he deserves. But thousands of people coming into Windsor wouldn’t be safe.”

A national minute’s silence will be held at 3pm at the beginning of the funeral on Saturday.

Interest in paying tribute was so high, five MPs of 136 listed to speak were unable to make a speech after time for the session elapsed last night.

Sir Lindsay told Times Radio today: “It was a great reflection. People wanted to reflect their encounters, their meetings and how they had come across the Duke of Edinburgh. I think it was so important for people to express their views and their opinions in a very nice way.

Mourning ceremony for Prince Philip in village where he’s worshipped as a god

John Dunne

Tribesmen who worship Prince Philip as a deity held portraits of the late duke during a mourning ceremony in his honour.

The villagers on the South Pacific island of Tanna in Vanuatu spoke of “opening the road for his spirit to grow” as they drank the traditional drink of kava. The group’s worship of Philip stems from their legend of the pale-skinned son of a local mountain god who ventured across the seas to look for a rich and powerful woman to marry.

Anthropologists believe Philip became linked to the legend in the 1960s when Vanuatu was an Anglo-French colony known as the New Hebrides, and portraits of him and the Queen were displayed in Government offices.

“We allow the kava to clear the way to allow for his spirit to come back and live with us. The same spirit will grow inside one of his family and one day we will reconnect the people of Tanna and England,” chief Jack Malia told the villagers during the ceremony yesterday.

The late Philip, who visited the island in 1974, maintained a respectful 50-year relationship with the group.

“And it was a great reflection of his life, wasn’t it? Whether it was the older generation who served in the armed forces or whether (it was) the younger generation of MPs who had actually done the Duke of Edinburgh Award. He spanned all the generations and that’s why I think so many people feel this real attachment and wanted to be part of yesterday.”

Leading the tributes in Parliament, Boris Johnson said the duke “made this country a better place”.

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