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Princess Anne Takes Prominent Place in Prince Philip's Funeral Procession

Corinne Heller
·3 min read
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Princess Anne took a prominent place amongst the royal family at her father Prince Philip's funeral.

Wearing a black jacket with her military medals, adhering to the day's dress code for royals with military ranks, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip's only daughter walked behind a Land Rover carrying her father's casket from Windsor Castle to nearby St George's Chapel. During the processional—she was the only woman to take part in the 8-minute walk—her older brother, Prince Charles, walked alongside her. Behind them walked their younger brothers Prince Andrew and Prince Edward.

Charles' sons Prince William and Prince Harry walked behind them, with their cousin and Anne's son Peter Philips in between them. Following were Anne's husband Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence and the queen's late sister Princess Margaret's son David Armstrong-Jones—the Earl of Snowdon.

Members of the U.K. military bowed their heads in respect as the group approached the chapel. The queen arrived separately from the funeral procession, driven in a Bentley and accompanied by a lady-in-waiting. As the monarch arrived at the chapel, the U.K. National Anthem played.

Prince Philip's Life Remembered During Funeral

While it is part of tradition for men to talk in royal funeral processionals, Anne, 70, had also been a member of the procession at the 2002 funeral her late grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother. There, she walked in between Philip and Edward, with Charles and Andrew walking in parallel on their father's other side.

Prince Philip Funeral, Princess Anne
Prince Philip Funeral, Princess Anne

Philip died at age 99 on April 9. Following his death, ITV aired a pre-recorded interview with Anne, who spoke about her father, with whom she had a close relationship. She recalled how he encouraged William and Harry, then aged 15 and 12, to walk in the procession at their late mother Princess Diana's funeral in 1997.

"Memory is a strange thing, isn't it? But I seem to remember him saying, in fact, it was a question of, 'If you'll do it, I'll do it,'" she said. "And that was him as a grandfather saying, ‘If you want me to be there, if that's what you want to do, if you want me to be there, I will be there.'"

Following Philip's death, Anne released a statement about her father, saying, "You know it's going to happen but you are never really ready. My father has been my teacher, my supporter and my critic, but mostly it is his example of a life well lived and service freely given that I most wanted to emulate. His ability to treat every person as an individual in their own right with their own skills comes through all the organisations with which he was involved."

She continued, "I regard it as an honour and a privilege to have been asked to follow in his footsteps and it has been a pleasure to have kept him in touch with their activities. I know how much he meant to them, in the UK, across the Commonwealth and in the wider world. I would like to emphasise how much the family appreciate the messages and memories of so many people whose lives he also touched. We will miss him but he leaves a legacy which can inspire us all."