Queen will decide TODAY if she will attend Prince Philip's memorial

Queen will decide TODAY if she will attend her beloved Philip’s memorial: Her Majesty is ‘determined’ to travel to London despite mobility issues to join 1,800 mourners in her first major public engagement for six months

  • Queen is said to be determined to travel to London to mark long and productive life of husband Philip 
  • Today would be her first major public engagement away from Windsor Castle in nearly six months
  • Royal aides say monarch has been ‘actively involved’ in plans for the service at Westminster Abbey 
  • Prince Andrew will attend but Duke and Duchess of Sussex are not returning from US for the service 

The Queen will decide this morning whether she will attend the service of thanksgiving for the life of the Duke of Edinburgh – just hours before the events begins.

She is said to be determined to travel to London to mark the long and productive life of her husband Philip in what would be her first major public engagement away from Windsor Castle in nearly six months.

Royal expert Roya Nikkhah was asked if she knows whether the Queen will attend. She told BBC Radio 4 at 7.15am: ‘We don’t know yet. We are hoping to hear from Buckingham Palace in the next hour or so with confirmation that Her Majesty will attend. We’ve been guided by the Palace she hopes to attend but of course she has these mobility issues. But if there is one engagement that she will try more to attend than any other this year, it will be this.’

Royal aides revealed the 95-year-old monarch has been ‘actively involved’ in plans for the service at Westminster Abbey ‘with many elements reflecting Her Majesty’s wishes’ as the order of service was unveiled overnight. 

It includes several elements the duke had planned for his funeral in April last year but which were forbidden by Covid restrictions at the time.

Among them is the involvement of Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) gold award winners and Sea Cadets, his expressed wish for the congregation to sing the rousing hymn Guide Me, O Thou Great Redeemer, and for clergy from the royal estates of Windsor, Sandringham and Balmoral to play a special part. 

Queen Elizabeth II takes her seat during the funeral of Prince Philip at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle on April 17, 2021

 

A graphic shows the plan for the service to remember Prince Philip at Westminster Abbey taking place this morning 

His funeral at St George’s Chapel in Windsor was limited to just 30 mourners in the midst of the pandemic and mass singing was banned, with the Queen sitting alone in a mask.

Around 1,800 guests are due at today’s service, including British and European royalty, representatives of the many charities of which the duke was patron or president, Boris and Carrie Johnson, and Sir David Attenborough.

Prince Harry faces ‘lifetime of regret’ for missing memorial to his beloved grandfather

Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle could ‘regret’ not attending the memorial service for his grandfather Prince Philip at Westminster Abbey tomorrow – and the Queen is likely to be ‘very upset’ but cannot change his mind, royal experts say.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are expected to remain at home in Montecito, California, while the rest of the Royal Family gather in London for the poignant event. 

Harry last returned to the UK eight months ago to unveil the statue of his late mother Diana, Princess of Wales in London on July 1 with his brother Prince William.

The Duke – one of the Queen and Philip’s eight grandchildren – is the only top-level royal not attending tomorrow’s service which was organised by the monarch.

Royal author Phil Dampier told MailOnline: ‘It’s very sad that Harry and Meghan won’t be at Prince Philip’s memorial service and I think one day Harry might regret it. He has said that he doesn’t feel safe without Scotland Yard security but to me that sounds like an excuse not to come back to the UK and indicates the rift with his blood family is still bad.

‘Harry was always very fond of his grandfather and was deeply honoured when he took over from him as Captain General of the Royal Marines, but sadly that didn’t last long. The pair attended some Remembrance Day events together and there was always a rapport between them, both being serving military men who had seen active service.’

Mr Dampier said that Harry ‘loved’ Philip’s sense of humour and praised him in interviews, adding that this makes his non-attendance ‘all the more mystifying and strange’. 

But the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are not returning from the US for the service.

While the Queen’s arrival is mentioned in the order of service, it is understood a final decision on her attendance will not be made until first thing this morning.

She has recently been forced to pull out of a string of engagements because of ill health and old age. She was unable to attend the Commonwealth Day service this month because of concerns about her mobility and comfort.

Palace and Abbey aides are thought to have taken steps to ensure that the service, to be televised live on BBC One, is less taxing for the Queen.

Instead of arriving at the usual West Entrance to the Abbey, which would involve steps and a long walk down the Nave in front of the cameras, the Queen could be driven around the side of the building and enter away from public view via the ‘Poet’s Entrance’.

She would then have a far shorter walk down the South Transept to her seat. It is likely she would walk with the aid of a stick.

The service will gave thanks for the duke’s dedication to family, nation and Commonwealth and recognise the importance of his legacy in creating opportunities for young people, promoting conservation, and supporting the Armed Forces.

One of the elements planned for the funeral which has now been included in the service will see nine Gold Award holders from The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, plus representatives from UK Cadet Force Associations, line entry routes into Westminster Abbey.

Philip, who died in April last year aged 99, launched the DofE Award in 1956 and was Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Cadet Force, a role he first took up in 1953.

A tenth DofE gold award holder, Doyin Sonibare, 28, from London, will give a tribute to His Royal Highness’s legacy, recognising the impact of the Award on young people across the globe.

The Very Reverend Dr David Hoyle, Dean of Westminster, will conduct the service and describe the duke in the Bidding as ‘a man of rare ability and distinction’ who ‘ever directed our attention away from himself.’

He will say: ‘He put privilege to work and understood his rank as a spur to service. Working at pace, with so many claims on his attention, he encouraged us to focus, as he was focussed, on the things that matter.

‘His was a discipline and character that seized opportunity and overcame obstruction and difficulty. We recall, with affection and respect, the sustained offering of a long life lived fully.’ 

The Queen and Prince Philip revisit Broadlands, to mark their Diamond Wedding Anniversary on November 20, 2007

It was the duke’s expressed wish that clergy from Windsor, Sandringham and Balmoral – known as The Queen’s domestic chaplains – played a part in his funeral service, but this was not possible due to the Covid restrictions.

Today the Reverend Kenneth MacKenzie Minister of Crathie Church, the regular place of worship of the British royal family when they are in residence at nearby Balmoral Castle, the Reverend Canon Jonathan Riviere, the Rector of Sandringham, and the Reverend Canon Martin Poll, Chaplain to the Royal Chapel of All Saints, Windsor Great Park, will offer prayers recognising Philip’s energy, spirit of adventure and ‘good stewardship of the environment’.

The service will also be attended by around 30 foreign royals, including Prince Albert of Monaco, Denmark’s Queen Margrethe, King Harald and Queen Sonja of Norway, and Spain’s King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia.

It is understood that some of the Queen’s older great-grandchildren could attend the service. 

Details have not been confirmed, but that could include Peter Phillips’ daughters, Savannah, 11, and Isla, 9, and maybe the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s oldest son Prince George, eight.

The Cambridges, the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke of York and his daughters Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie, the Earl and Countess of Wessex and their children Lady Louise Windsor, 18, and Viscount Severn, 14, and the Princess Royal and Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, are among the royals due to attend. But the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are not returning from the US for the service.

The Queen and Philip were married in the Abbey in November 1947 and it holds many special memories.

Flowers at today’s service will be red, white and blue. They will include dendrobium orchids, which also featured in the Queen’s wedding bouquet, and eryngium – or sea holly – echoing the duke’s career in the Royal Navy and lifelong affection for the sea.

The Queen attended the opening of the Welsh Parliament on October 14 last year. Since then she has conducted engagements at Windsor Castle, where she is now based, and visited Sandringham in February. 

Prince Philip’s memorial Order of Service in FULL: Royal Family release details of the final farewell for the Duke of Edinburgh at Westminster Abbey

The Royal Family and Westminster Abbey have released the full Order of Service ahead of today’s memorial service for HRH Prince Philip, who died almost one year ago.

The service, which is set to take place at Westminster Abbey from 11:30am today, will pay tribute to The Duke of Edinburgh’s contribution to public life and support to charitable organisations.

The memorial ceremony will also incorporate several aspects that were planned for Philip’s funeral last year, which were unable to go ahead due to the Covid-19 restrictions in place at the time.

The Queen, who was married to The Duke of Edinburgh for 73 years prior to his death, is said to have personally overseen many elements of the service.

Buckingham Palace said there will also be a heavy military presence at the service, given Philip’s glittering career in the Armed Forces, along with several recipients and individuals involved in the Duke of Edinburgh scheme. 

Here is the official Order of Service for the Service of Thanksgiving for HRH Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, who died April 9, 2021. 

The Queen and Prince Philip in June 2014. The Duke of Edinburgh died in April 2021 aged 99

Introduction 

The service is conducted by the Very Reverend Dr David Hoyle, Dean of Westminster.

The service is sung by the Choirs of Westminster Abbey, and Her Majesty’s Chapel Royal, St James’s Palace, directed by James O’Donnell, Organist and Master of the Choristers, Westminster Abbey. 

The organ is played by Peter Holder, Sub-Organist. The State Trumpeters of the Household Cavalry are directed by Trumpet Major Julian Sandford, and the Fanfare Team from the Central Band of the Royal Air Force are directed by Sergeant Timothy Hynd RAF. 

Before the service Matthew Jorysz, Assistant Organist, plays:

  • Andante cantabile from Symphony No 3, Charles-Marie Widor (1844–1937)  
  • Bist du bei mir BWV 508, attributed to Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750) 
  • Salix from Plymouth Suite, Percy Whitlock (1903–46)

The Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines Portsmouth (Royal Band), directed by Lieutenant Colonel Jason Burcham RM, Principal Director of Music, plays:

  • Prelude from 49th Parallel, Ralph Vaughan Williams (1872–1958) arranged by Michael McDermott 
  • Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral from Lohengri,n Richard Wagner (1813–83) arranged by Peter Curtis 
  • Canterbury Chorale, Jan Van der Roost (b 1956) 
  • Lux Aurumque, Eric Whitacre (b 1970) 
  • Men of Honour Part 2, Thomas Bergerson (b 1980) arranged by Ivan Hutchinson
  • Pacific, Blake Neely (b 1969) and Hans Zimmer (b 1957) arranged by Rieks van der Velde     

The Assistant Organist plays:

  • Shepherd’s Song from Symphony No 6 (‘Pastoral’), Ludwig van Beethoven (1770–1827) 

The Sub-Organist plays:

  • Benedictus from Sonata Britannica, Charles Villiers Stanford (1852–1924)


The Duke of Edinburgh, who has died at the age of 99, joined the Royal Navy in 1939 – the year the Second World War broke out – when he was still a teenager. By 1942, he had risen to the rank of first lieutenant after bravely fighting in the Battle of Crete and the conflict at Cape Matapan. Left: Philip in 1946. Right: Phlip in 1945, when he was serving on HMS Valiant

It wasn’t just on water where Philip put his military credentials to good use – he trained to be a pilot with the RAF and by the time he gave up flying in 1997, at the age of 76, he had completed 5,986 hours of time in the sky in 59 different aircraft

Members of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Family arrive and are conducted to their seats.

The Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons, the Right Honourable Dame Eleanor Laing DBE MP, and The Lord Speaker, the Lord McFall of Alcluith, are received by the Dean and Chapter of Westminster. Presentations are made and they are conducted to their seats. 

The Prime Minister, the Right Honourable Boris Johnson MP, and Mrs Johnson, are received. Presentations are made and they are conducted to their seats. 

The Right Worshipful The Lord Mayor of Westminster, Councillor Andrew Smith, and The Lady Mayoress Salma Shah are received. Presentations are made and they are conducted to their seats. 

All stand, and then sit. 

Representatives of faith communities and of the churches process to places in the Lantern. The King and Queen of the Belgians, The Queen of Denmark, The Grand Duchess of Luxembourg, The Prince of Monaco, The King and Queen of the Netherlands and Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands, The King and Queen of Norway, The King and Queen of Spain, The King and Queen of Sweden, Crown Prince of the Kingdom of Bahrain, Prince El Hassan bin Talal and Princess Sarvath El Hassan, Queen Anne-Marie of the Hellenes, Crown Prince Pavlos and Crown Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece, Prince Philippos and Princess Nina of Greece, Margareta, Custodian of the Romanian Crown and Prince Radu of Romania, Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine of Serbia and Prince Kyril of Preslav arrive and are conducted to their seats. 

Members of the Royal Family arrive and are conducted to their seats. 

Prince and Princess Michael of Kent, The Duke of Kent and The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester arrive and are conducted to their seats. 

The Princess Royal and Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence KCVO, CB, The Earl and Countess of Wessex, The Lady Louise Mountbatten-Windsor and Viscount Severn arrive and are conducted to their seats. 

The Duke of York, Princess Beatrice and Mr Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, Princess Eugenie and Mr Jack Brooksbank arrive and are conducted to their seats. 

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are received by the Dean and Chapter. Presentations are made and they are conducted to their seats.

The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall are received by the Dean and Chapter. Presentations are made and they are conducted to their seats. 

All stand as the procession moves to places in Quire, the Sacrarium, and Poets’ Corner. 

A fanfare is sounded. 

The Queen is received by the Dean and Chapter. Presentations are made. 

A holder of a gold award from the Duke of Edinburgh scheme will speak at Prince Philip’s memorial service today, while nine other young people with their own awards will line the steps of Westminster Abbey. Above: The Duke of Edinburgh hosts DofE gold award presentations at Hillsborough Castle in County Down in 2017

Order of Service

All sing:

‘He who would valiant be ‘gainst all disaster, let him in constancy follow the Master. There’s no discouragement shall make him once relent his first avowed intent to be a pilgrim. Whoso beset him round with dismal stories, do but themselves confound his strength the more is. No foes shall stay his might, though he with giants fight: he will make good his right to be a pilgrim. Since, Lord, thou dost defend us with thy Spirit, We know we at the end shall life inherit. Then fancies flee away! I’ll fear not what men say, I’ll labour night and day to be a pilgrim.’ (Monk’s Gate 372 NEH from The Pilgrim’s Progress adapted from an English folk song John Bunyan (1628–88) arranged by James O’Donnell (b 1961)

All sit. The Very Reverend Dr David Hoyle, Dean of Westminster, says the Bidding:

‘In Westminster Abbey, where he made promises that defined a life of willing duty and spirited service, we give thanks for His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. A man of rare ability and distinction, rightly honoured and celebrated, he ever directed our attention away from himself. He put privilege to work and understood his rank as a spur to service. Working at pace, with so many claims on his attention, he encouraged us to focus, as he was focussed, on the things that matter. His was a discipline and character that seized opportunity and overcame obstruction and difficulty. We recall, with affection and respect, the sustained offering of a long life lived fully. Acknowledging our loss, we turn to the God who is our help for He will renew our hope. In grateful remembrance of The Prince Philip, we then commit ourselves to live as he lived, in faith, in the service of Her Majesty, and with a greater reverence for our world and our neighbours.’

‘Let us pray in the words that Jesus taught us.

‘Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done; on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.’

Doyin Sonibare, a Gold Award holder from The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, gives a Tribute.

Doyin Sonibare, 28, from London, will pay tribute to the duke, who died last year aged 99. Ms Sonibare, who is now studying for a PhD into sickle cell disease, will tell attendees that the DofE helped her to secure her first job at the age of 18 and will reflect on the difference that the scheme has made to her life since

The Right Honourable the Lord Wallace of Tankerness QC, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, reads:

‘To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One. Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth. Why sayest thou, O Jacob, and speakest, O Israel, My way is hid from the Lord, and my judgment is passed over from my God? Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.’ (Isaiah 40: 25–31)

‘Thanks be to God.’

The choir sings: 

‘Prevent us, O Lord, in all our doings with thy most gracious favour, and further us with thy continual help, that in all our works begun, continued, and ended in thee, we may glorify thy holy name, and finally by thy mercy obtain everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.’ (William Byrd (c 1540–1623) Collect for Holy Communion The Book of Common Prayer)

The Right Reverend and Right Honourable Dame Sarah Mullally DBE, Dean of Her Majesty’s Chapels Royal, reads:

‘Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.’ (Philippians 4: 4–9) 

‘Thanks be to God.’

All stand to sing:

‘All creatures of our God and King, lift up your voice and with us sing Alleluia, alleluia! Thou burning sun with golden beam, thou silver moon with softer gleam: O praise him, O praise him, Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia! 

‘Thou flowing water, pure and clear, make music for thy Lord to hear, Alleluia, alleluia! Thou fire so masterful and bright, that givest man both warmth and light: O praise him, O praise him, Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia! 

‘Thou rushing wind that art so strong, ye clouds that sail in heaven along, O praise him, Alleluia! Thou rising morn, in praise rejoice, ye lights of evening, find a voice: O praise him, O praise him, Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia! 

‘Dear mother earth, who day by day unfoldest blessings on our way, O praise him, Alleluia! The flowers and fruits that in thee grow, let them his glory also show: O praise him, O praise him, Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia! 

‘Let all things their Creator bless, and worship him in humbleness, O praise him, Alleluia! Praise, praise the Father, praise the Son, and praise the Spirit, three in One: O praise him, O praise him, Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia!’ (Lasst uns erfreuen 263 NEH, St Francis of Assisi (1182–1226) Ralph Vaughan Williams, translated by William Draper (1855–1933) after a melody in Geistliche Kirchengesäng Cologne, 1623 arranged by James O’Donnell)

Cadets will today line the entrances to Westminster Abbey for Prince Philip’s memorial service and a marching band from the Royal Marines will play as guests arrive, Buckingham Palace has revealed. Above: Philip during a visit to Windsor Sea Cadet Unit on April 7, 2014

All sit. The Right Reverend David Conner KCVO, Dean of Windsor, gives the Address. 

The choir sings:

‘We praise thee, O God : we acknowledge thee to be the Lord. All the earth doth worship thee : the Father everlasting. To thee all angels cry aloud : the heavens, and all the powers therein. To thee cherubin, and seraphin : continually do cry, Holy, holy, holy : Lord God of Sabaoth; heaven and earth are full of the majesty : of thy glory. The glorious company of the apostles : praise thee. The goodly fellowship of the prophets : praise thee. The noble army of martyrs : praise thee. The holy Church throughout all the world : doth acknowledge thee; the Father : of an infinite majesty; thine honourable, true : and only Son; also the Holy Ghost : the Comforter. Thou art the King of glory : O Christ. Thou art the everlasting Son : of the Father. When thou tookest upon thee to deliver man : thou didst not abhor the Virgin’s womb. When thou hadst overcome the sharpness of death : thou didst open the kingdom of heaven to all believers. Thou sittest at the right hand of God : in the Glory of the Father. We believe that thou shalt come : to be our Judge. We therefore pray thee, help thy servants : whom thou hast redeemed with thy precious blood. Make them to be numbered with thy saints : in glory everlasting. O Lord, save thy people : and bless thine heritage. Govern them : and lift them up for ever. Day by day : we magnify thee; and we worship thy name : ever world without end. Vouchsafe, O Lord : to keep us this day without sin. O Lord, have mercy upon us : have mercy upon us. O Lord, let thy mercy lighten upon us : as our trust is in thee. O Lord, in thee have I trusted : let me never be confounded.’ (Te Deum in C Canticle for Morning Prayer, Benjamin Britten (1913–76) The Book of Common Prayer)

The Reverend Mark Birch, Minor Canon and Precentor, introduces the prayers:

‘Let us give thanks to Almighty God for the life and work of The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and pray for all who honour his legacy and continue his work.’

All sit or kneel. 

The Reverend Kenneth MacKenzie, Minister of Crathie Church, says:

‘Let us give thanks for his service as Consort, liege man of life and limb, and of earthly worship to Her Majesty; for his devotion to family, to Nation and to Commonwealth; for his strength and constancy. O Father of all, we pray thee for those whom we love but see no longer. Grant them thy peace; let light perpetual shine upon them; and, in thy loving wisdom and almighty power, work in them the good purpose of thy perfect will; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.’

The Reverend Canon Jonathan Riviere LVO, Rector of Sandringham, says:

‘Let us give thanks for his energy and spirit of adventure; for his work with the young to discover new skills and serve their communities. Let us pray especially for the work of Cadet Forces and all engaged in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. Teach us, good Lord, to serve thee as thou deservest; to give and not to count the cost; to fight and not to heed the wounds; to toil and not to seek for rest; to labour and not to ask for any reward, save that of knowing that we do Thy will; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.’

The Reverend Canon Martin Poll, Chaplain to the Royal Chapel of All Saints, Windsor Great Park, says:

‘Let us give thanks for his work in conservation and the good stewardship of the environment, in bringing together people of many faiths, and in the work of the World Wildlife Fund. Almighty God, whose loving hand hath given us all that we possess in creation; grant us grace that we may honour thee with our substance, and remembering the account which we must one day give, may be faithful stewards of thy bounty; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.’

The Reverend Canon Paul Wright, Sub-Dean of Her Majesty’s Chapels Royal, says:

‘Let us give thanks for his gifts of character; for his humour and resilience; his fortitude and devotion to duty; that we may follow his good example in the service of our fellows. O Lord God, when thou givest to thy servants to endeavour any great matter, grant us also to know that it is not the beginning, but the continuing of the same unto the end, until it be thoroughly finished, which yieldeth the true glory; through him who for the finishing of thy work laid down his life, our Redeemer, Jesus Christ. Amen.’

The Reverend Dr James Hawkey, Canon in Residence, says:

‘Let us give thanks to our heavenly Father for all his blessings and mercies, and dedicate ourselves anew to his service. Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we thine unworthy servants do give thee most humble and hearty thanks for all thy goodness and loving-kindness to us and to all men; We bless thee for our creation, preservation, and all the blessings of this life; but above all for thine inestimable love in the redemption of the world by our Lord Jesus Christ, for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory. And we beseech thee, give us that due sense of all thy mercies, that our hearts may be unfeignedly thankful, and that we show forth thy praise, not only with our lips, but in our lives; by giving up ourselves to thy service, and by walking before thee in holiness and righteousness all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be all honour and glory, world without end. Amen.’

All stand to sing:

‘Guide me, O thou great Redeemer, pilgrim through this barren land; I am weak, but thou art mighty; hold me with thy powerful hand: Bread of heaven, feed me till I want no more. Open now the crystal fountain whence the healing stream doth flow; let the fiery cloudy pillar lead me all my journey through: strong Deliverer, be thou still my strength and shield. When I tread the verge of Jordan, bid my anxious fears subside; Death of death, and hell’s Destruction, land me safe on Canaan’s side: songs of praises I will ever give to thee.’ (Cwm Rhondda 368 NEH Arglwydd, arwain trwy’r anialwch, John Hughes (1873–1932) William Williams (1717–91) arranged by James O’Donnell, translated by Peter Williams (1727–96) and others)

The Most Reverend and the Right Honourable Justin Welby, Lord Archbishop of Canterbury, Primate of All England and Metropolitan, gives the Blessing:

‘God grant to the living grace; to the departed rest; to the Church, The Queen, the Commonwealth, and all people, peace and concord; and to us sinners life everlasting; and the blessing of God almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be among you and remain with you always. Amen.’

All sing:

‘God save our gracious Queen, long live our noble Queen, God save The Queen. Send her victorious, happy, and glorious, long to reign over us: God save The Queen.’ (arranged by Gordon Jacob (1895–1984) 

All remain standing as the Procession, together with The Queen and Members of the Royal Family, leaves the Abbey church.

Music after the service 

Allegro molto e ritmico from Sonata Britannica, Charles Villiers Stanford 

The band plays: 

The Seafarers arranged by Michael McDermott 

Members of the congregation are kindly requested to remain in their seats until directed to move by the Honorary Stewards 

The bells of the Abbey church are rung. 

END OF SERVICE 

World’s royals unite to remember Prince Philip: Monarchs including Letizia of Spain, Prince Albert of Monaco and the Crown Prince of Bahrain fly in for service of thanksgiving

Royal families from around the world will unite to pay tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh at the service of thanksgiving.  

Born to Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark and Princess Alice of Battenberg, Prince Philip had ties to many of the European monarchies which were only strengthened when he married the then Princess Elizabeth. 

His maternal grandmother, Princess Victoria of Hesse, was granddaughter of Queen Victoria, dubbed ‘Europe’s grandmother’ because of her sprawling web of nine children and 42 grandchildren marring into other European families. 

It is through Queen Victoria that both the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are related to the thrones of Sweden, Belgium, and Denmark. 

There are also familial links to the King of Spain, who touchingly referred to the Duke of Edinburgh as ‘dear uncle Philip’ in a statement shared after his death.

Prince Albert of Monaco and representatives from the defunct Romanian and Bulgarian throne will also be in attendance. 

From further afield there is Prince El Hassan bin Talal and Princess Sarvath El Hassan of Jordan, who are old friends of the Queen, and, perhaps most controversially, the Crown Prince of Bahrain. 

King Harald V of Norway was forced to cancel last minute due to Covid-19, but there are still plenty of royals who have made the journey to pay their respects…  

SPAIN: King Felipe and Queen Letizia

Affectionate: King Felipe of Spain, a distant relative of both the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, will attend with his wife Letizia (pictured). The King referred to the Queen and Prince Philip as ‘dear aunt Lilibet’ and ‘dear uncle Philip’ in a note sent after his death last year 

Fond memories: King Felipe and Queen Letizia with the Queen and Prince Philip in 2017

With nine children of her own and 42 grandchildren, Queen Victoria sat at the centre of a spider’s web of royal connections across Europe.

Her husband Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha had dreamt of a Europe held together by family connections, and Victoria was determined to carry out his wishes.

They married their offspring into royal and noble families across the continent, earning Victoria the nickname ‘the grandmother of Europe’.

Eight of their children married into royal houses, starting with Vicky, who wed the Crown Prince of Prussia. 

King Felipe VI of Spain, 54, will be joined at the service by Queen Leizia, 49, a former journalist. 

Felipe, who ascended the throne in 2014 upon the abdication of his father King Juan Carlos, referred to the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh as ‘dear aunt Lilibet’ and ‘dear uncle Philip’ in a deeply personal message sent in the days after Prince Philip’s death.

The note sent to the Queen read: ‘We were deeply saddened to hear of the passing of our dear Uncle Philip.

‘We shall never forget the moments that we shared with him and the legacy of service and dedication to the Crown and the United Kingdom by your side.’

The familiarity between the British and Spanish royal households is due to centuries-old family ties. 

Felipe’s maternal great-grandfather, King Constantine I of Greece (1868 – 1923), was the older brother of Prince Philip’s father, Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark.

Meanwhile Felipe’s father, Juan Carlos of Spain, is the great-grandson of Queen Victoria’s youngest child, Princess Beatrice, making him a distant cousin of the Queen.

Princess Beatrice’s daughter Princess Victoria Eugenie of Battenberg went on to become Queen Ena of Spain. 

King Felipe and Queen Letizia were honoured at a State Visit to the UK in 2017. 

NETHERLANDS: King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima; Princess Beatrix 


Family visit: Representing the Netherlands will be King Willem-Alexander, 54, and his wife Queen Máxima, 50. His mother Princess Beatrix (right) will also be in attendance 

Personal sorrow: King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands paid tribute to Prince Philip’s ‘lively personality’ in a heartfelt tribute. Above, with the Queen and Prince Philip in 2015

Representing the Netherlands will be King Willem-Alexander, 54, and his wife Queen Máxima, 50. 

He ascended the throne in 2013 following the abdication of his mother, Princess Beatrix, 84, who will also be in attendance. 

The Queen and King Willem-Alexander are fifth cousins, twice removed. They are both related to Princess Carolina of Orange-Nassau (1743-1787), granddaughter of King George II. 

Her parents were King George’s daughter Anne, Princess Royal, and the Dutch Prince William VI.    

Their grandson was Francis of Teck, later Duke of Teck, who married Princess Mary Adelaide of Cambridge. Mary Adelaide was the mother of Mary of Teck, who married King George V, the current Queen’s grandfather.

King Willem-Alexander is a descendant of Carolina’s through her eldest surviving son, Frederick William. 

The Queen and the Dutch King are also both descendants of Frederick II Eugene, Duke of Württemberg. 

SWEDEN: King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia

Family ties: King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Sonja of Sweden will both attend the service. The Swedish king’s lineage traces back to Victoria on both his mother and father’s sides

Shared experiences: Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden (left, alongside Queen Elizabeth, Queen Silvia, and Prince Philip in 1983) also paid tribute, calling the duke ‘a good friend of our family’

The Queen’s third cousin King Carl XVI Gustaf, 75, and his wife Queen Silvia, 78, will will be among the congregation. 

The link between the British and Swedish monarchs goes back to Queen Victoria, the Queen’s great-great grandmother (through her father, King George VI) and King Carl XVI Gustaf’s great-great grandmother.  

The Swedish king’s lineage traces back to Victoria on both his mother and father’s sides, making him a distant claimant to the throne.

His paternal grandfather, King Gustaf VI Adolf, was married to Princess Margaret, Queen Victoria’s granddaughter through her son Prince Albert. 

Another of Victoria’s sons, Prince Leopold, had two children with Princess Helena Friederike of Waldeck and Pyrmont, including Charles Edward, Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, and King Carl XVI Gustaf’s maternal grandfather. 

In a statement released after the death of the Duke of Edinburgh, King Carl XVI said: ‘Prince Philip has been a great friend of our family for many years, a relation which we have deeply valued. 

‘His service to his country will remain an inspiration to us all.’ 

BELGIUM: King Philippe and Queen Mathilde  

‘Deeply saddened’: King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium will also make the journey

King Philippe of Belgium, 61, who is related to the Queen through Queen Victoria, will attend the service with his wife Queen Mathilde, 49.

The Queen and Philippe are also both descendants of Christian IX of Denmark, whose six children married into other royal families across Europe, earning him the title ‘father-in-law of Europe’. 

In a joint statement shared after the death of Prince Philip, the couple said: ‘Deeply saddened by the passing away of His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. 

‘We wish to express our deepest condolences to Her Majesty The Queen, the British Royal Family and the people of the United Kingdom. 

‘We will always cherish the memories of our warm encounters.’ ⁣ 

DENMARK: Queen Margrethe II 

Close friend: Queen Margrethe of Denmark has a close relationship with the Queen

Royal visitor: Queen Margrethe and her daughter-in-law Crown Princess Mary recently welcomed the Duchess of Cambridge on her solo visit to Copenhagen

The Duke of Edinburgh was born Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, so it is no surprise both royal families will be represented at the order of service. 

Flying the flag for Denmark will be Queen Margrethe, who is known affectionately as ‘aunt Daisy’ by many European royals due to her close relationship with 

The 81-year-old monarch will fly solo at the Service of Thanksgiving, although she is often joined at royal events by her son Frederik, Crown Prince of Denmark, and daughter-in-law Princess Mary. 

Queen Margrethe and Crown Princess Mary recently welcomed the Duchess of Cambridge on her solo visit to Copenhagen.  

Queen Margrethe II enjoys a close personal relationship with the Queen and was related to the Duke of Edinburgh through King Christian IX of Denmark.   

King Christian IX – dubbed the ‘father-in-law of Europe’ due to his far-reaching progeny – was the great-great-grandfather of Queen Margrethe and the great-grandfather of the Duke of Edinburgh.

The Danish queen is also related to Queen Elizabeth through Queen Victoria. 

Margrethe lost her husband Henrik, Prince Consort of Denmark, in 2018. 

GREECE: Queen Anne-Marie of the Hellenes; Crown Prince Pavlos and Crown Princess Marie-Chantal; Prince Philippos and Princess Nina of Greece

Greek royalty: Among the Duke of Edinburgh’s Greek relatives in attendance will be Queen Anne-Marie of the Hellenes, the last Queen of Greece and wife of King Constantine II. Pictured, Anne-Marie with her husband in 2012

Personal connection: Prince Charles’s godson Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece will attend with his wife Marie-Chantal (left). Above, with their daughter Olympia at Eugenie’s wedding

The Duke of Edinburgh and Princess Diana were both godparents to his younger brother, Prince Philippos, who married wife Nina in a wedding attended by Eugenie and Beatrice

Among the Duke of Edinburgh’s Greek relatives in attendance will be Queen Anne-Marie of the Hellenes, the last Queen of Greece and wife of King Constantine II, her children, Crown Prince Pavlos and Prince Philippos, and their respective wives. 

Queen Anne-Marie is the daughter of King Frederick IX of Denmark and his wife Ingrid of Sweden, and the younger sister of Queen Margrethe II of Denmark. She had to renounce her claim to the Danish throne on marrying Constantine II.

Queen Anne-Marie is a great-great granddaughter of Queen Victoria, making her a third cousin of both Prince Philip and the Queen. 

King Constantine II was a first cousin once removed of Prince Philip; both were descended from King George I of Greece.

Their children also have ties to the royal family. Prince Pavlos is Prince Charles’s godson, while the Duke of Edinburgh and Princess Diana were both godparents to his younger brother, Prince Philippos. 

Pavlos and Philippos will be joined at the service by their wives. Pavlos’ wife Marie-Chantal is a queen bee socialite who’s friends with Zoe de Givenchy, Tory Burch and the Italian fashion designer Valentino. 

Meanwhile Philippos married wife Nina in three separate ceremonies in 2020 and 2021. Princess Eugenie, Princess Beatrice, and their husbands were all in attendance. 

MONACO: Prince Albert   

Solo visit: Prince Albert of Monaco, 64, will attend without his wife Princess Charlene

Prince Albert of Monaco, 64, will attend without his wife Princess Charlene. 

Princess Charlene recently returned to Monaco following an extended stay away due to health problems, including what the palace has previously referred to as a ‘state of profound general fatigue’.  

The mother-of-two was reportedly admitted to a private Swiss clinic in late November, within days of her return to Monaco following a 10-month absence in her native South Africa

However Princess Charlene remains out of the spotlight and will have a period of rest and recuperation at home before resuming her official duties. 

Prince Albert is the only son of Rainier III of Monaco and his Hollywood wife Princess Grace Kelly.

His wedding to Charlene was attended by the Earl and Countess of Wessex, and Prince and Princess Michael of Kent.

LUXEMBOURG: Maria Teresa, Grand Duchess

Flying in his stead: Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg, will be represented at the service by his wife, the Grand Duchess Maria Teresa

Henri, Grand Duke of Luxembourg, will be represented at the service by his wife, the Grand Duchess Maria Teresa. 

The Queen and Henri are related through Carolina of Orange-Nassau, an ancestor of the Queen’s grandmother Mary of Teck. 

Henri is also a descendant of Carolina through her eldest surviving son Frederick William, Prince of Nassau-Weilburg whose marriage to heiress Louise Isabelle of Kirchberg produced William, Duke of Nassau. 

His eldest son Adolphe, in turn, became the first independent Grand Duke of Luxembourg.

On the death of Prince Philip, Henri released a lengthy statement, saying: ‘Prince Philip brought the same discipline and intelligence to his activities as Prince Consort and will be fondly and respectfully remembered for his strong support and dedication to Your Majesty, Your family and the United Kingdom.

‘Personally, we hold many great memories of our meetings over the past decades. Not only his earnest commitment to social and environmental causes, but also his wit and humour impressed us deeply.

‘The friendship that Your Majesty and His Royal Highness shared with my late parents still holds a special meaning for my family.’ 

ROMANIA: Margareta, Custodian of the Romanian Crown and Prince Radu of Romania

Building relationships: Margareta, Custodian of the Romanian Crown and Prince Radu of Romania

Margareta is the Custodian of the Romanian Crown, making her head of a defunct monarchy. The throne is not recognised by the Romanian parliament and lacks legal validity without approval by the country’s Parliament.   

Although Margareta has no official role within the politics of Romania to maintain ties with other countries, she has fostered diplomatic relationships with numerous foreign dignitaries in her capacity as a head of the House of Romania.

During these visits she is often accompanied by her husband Prince Radu, who is a special Romanian Government representative for Integration, Co-operation and Sustainable Development.

Margareta is the Royal Patron of The Duke of Edinburgh International Award Romania.

In November 2021 she spent time with Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex at the couple’s home at Bagshot Park.    

BAHRAIN: Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa

Controversial: Crown Prince of Bahrain, Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, 52

Royal visit: The Crown Prince during a royal engagement with William and Kate in 2018

Among the most controversial guests will be Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, 52, the Crown Prince of Bahrain.

His grandfather, the late Emir Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa and his wife, Hessa bint Salman Al Khalifa, spent time with the Queen and Prince Philip during their highly publicised tour of the Middle East in 1979.

The relationship has continued over the decades with both Salman and his father, King Hamad, being seen with Queen in the Royal Box at Ascot. 

They have both hosted visits from both the Prince of Wales and Prince Andrew in the past. 

However the relationship has also been the subject of widespread public criticism. 

Just days before the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in 2011, the Crown Prince’s staff told the Palace that he was withdrawing his acceptance of an invitation.

The 11th-hour change of heart spared the couple potential embarrassment as human rights activists had threatened to disrupt Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa’s stay in London, insisting he was the chief architect of the crackdown on the Arab Spring uprising.

The couple had invited the Prince as part of a long-standing protocol in inviting the ‘Crowned Heads of the World’ and their staff had sought Foreign Office advice.

The Queen also raised eyebrows when she invited the King of Bahrain to attend her 90th birthday celebrations. 

JORDAN: Prince El Hassan bin Talal and Princess Sarvath El Hassan 

Friends of the Queen: Old Harrovian Prince Hassan of Jordan, 75, the uncle of the reigning King Abdullah II, and his wife Princess Sarvath, 74, will be in attendance

Old Harrovian Prince Hassan of Jordan, 75, the uncle of the reigning King Abdullah II, and his wife Princess Sarvath, 74, are friends of the Queen. 

She has spent weekends with them in Wimbledon, where the prince has a house 

His large detached house is not far from Wimbledon Common and its bridle paths, so that guests can hear the clip-clopping of ponies from a nearby riding school.    

The Princess has been a guest of the Royal Family at Ascot and was given the honour of riding in a carriage with Princess Anne. 

SERBIA: Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine 

Prince Charles’s close friend: Crown Prince Alexander, 76, will arrive for the service with his wife, Crown Princess Katherine, 78

Prince Charles’s close friend Crown Prince Alexander, 76, will arrive for the service with his wife, Crown Princess Katherine, 78.  

Alexander was born in exile at London’s Claridge’s hotel, temporarily declared Yugoslavia for a day in 1945 to get around succession laws requiring future kings to be born on home territory.  

He is the only child of King Peter II and his wife, Princess Alexandra of Greece and Denmark, who was a childhood playmate of her cousin the Duke of Edinburgh. 

Born and raised in the UK, he is a godson of the Queen and through his father a direct descendent of Queen Victoria. 

He is known for his support of the monarchy and his humanitarian work.    

Prince Kyril of Preslav

Distant relative: Kyril is the second son of King Simeon II, also known as Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, a fourth cousin of George VI

Born in 1964, Kyril is the second son of King Simeon II, also known as Simeon Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, who had served as the last reigning Tsar of Bulgaria from 1943 to 1946, before later serving as Prime Minister of Bulgaria from 2001 to 2005.

Simeon is a fourth cousin of the Queen’s father, George VI, and attended the 2011 wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

In September 1989, Kyril married María del Rosario Nadal y Fuster de Puigdorfila, also known as Rosario Nadal, the daughter of Miguel Nadal y Pestard, a Balearic Islands industrialist.   

Kyril is now dating British businesswoman and art historian Katharine Butler, a former University of Edinburgh professor and daughter of British diplomat Sir Michael Butler.

And missing out… King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway

Norwegian King Harald V, 85, and his wife Queen Sonja, 84, had been due to represent their country at the Service of Thanksgiving but cancelled their attendance yesterday after King Harald tested positive for Covid-19

Norway’s King Harald (pictured greeting Philip with his wife Queen Sonja in 2001) said: ‘Our thoughts are with Queen Elizabeth’ when they learned of Philip’s death

Norwegian King Harald V, 85, and his wife Queen Sonja, 84, had been due to represent their country at the Service of Thanksgiving but cancelled their attendance yesterday after King Harald tested positive for Covid-19.

Harald is a second cousin of the Queen and the first foreign monarch in succession to the British throne, as they both share King Edward VII (1841 – 1910) and Queen Alexandra (1844 – 1925) as great-grandparents. 

The couple had six children, one of whom, their daughter Maud, married into the Danish Prince Carl. 

When Norway became independent in 1905, it wanted to establish a monarchy and asked Prince Carl to be king. He took the name Haakon, and Maud became Queen of Norway. 

King Haakon and Queen Maud lived mainly in England before coming to Norway. The Queen also retained her British home at Appleton House until she died in 1938.

Their son, Crown Prince Olav, also had strong ties to Britain. He is the father of King Harald V. 

His greatest legacy… their greatest honour: Duke of Edinburgh award holders tell of huge pride at being central to Prince Philip’s memorial service – after missing his funeral due to Covid

A holder of a gold award from the Duke of Edinburgh scheme will speak at Prince Philip’s memorial service today, while nine other young people with their own awards will line the steps of Westminster Abbey.

Doyin Sonibare, 28, from London, will pay tribute to the duke – who died last year aged 99 – in the presence of his wife the Queen, eldest son Prince Charles and other children and grandchildren.

Ms Sonibare, who now works as an advertising account executive and is also studying for a PhD at Brunel University, will tell attendees that the DofE helped her to secure her first job at the age of 18 and will reflect on the difference that the scheme has made to her life since.  

Nine other recent holders of the gold award, who are aged between 18 and 27, will line the abbey steps as guests arrive. 

DofE award holders and representatives from the dozens of other charities he was involved with were unable to attend Prince Philip’s funeral last year due to coronavirus restrictions that were in place.  

Ms Sonibare, who completed her gold award in 2014, said ahead of her speech: ‘It’s a huge honour to speak at today’s service and reflect on the amazing impact The Duke’s legacy has had on me and millions of others – and will go on having for future generations.

‘When I look back at the last decade, I’ve achieved so much more than I thought I could – and it’s down to my DofE and the opportunity it gave me.

‘At times like these, with so much uncertainty and upheaval, it’s so important all young people get opportunities like this, so they have every chance to fulfil their potential too.’

One of the gold award holders who is lining the steps today, Rajin Modha, 27,  told MailOnline that the scheme allowed him to ‘find myself as an individual’. 

Prince Philip founded the DofE in 1956 after being inspired by his former headmaster at Gordonstoun school.  

Over the six-and-a-half decades since then, more than 6.7million young men and women have participated in DofE programmes in the UK and have achieved 3.1million awards. It is now offered in more than 140 countries.

A holder of a gold award from the Duke of Edinburgh scheme will speak at Prince Philip’s memorial service today, while nine other young people with their own awards will line the steps of Westminster Abbey. Above: The Duke of Edinburgh hosts DofE gold award presentations at Hillsborough Castle in County Down in 2017

Doyin Sonibare, 28, from London, will pay tribute to the duke, who died last year aged 99. Ms Sonibare, who is now studying for a PhD into sickle cell disease, will tell attendees that the DofE helped her to secure her first job at the age of 18 and will reflect on the difference that the scheme has made to her life since

Among those to achieve the award in previous years is the Duchess of Cambridge, who won her gold while at Marlborough College.

Philip’s youngest son, Prince Edward, attained his gold award in 1986 and was pictured laughing as he was presented with it by his father.

DofE award allowed me to ‘find myself as an individual’, memorial service attendee says

Rajan Modha, 27

Rajan Modha, 27, from Harrow, north-west London, is one of the nine DofE gold award holders who will be lining the steps of Westminster Abbey today.

He first started on the scheme in 2009 and completed it in 2017 after cycling more than 180miles through the Gambia in in Africa over the course of four days to gain his gold award.

Speaking to MailOnline, he said: ‘The DofE allowed me to find myself as an individual and showed me what I was good at.

‘It challenged me from the more practical perspective, which was very suited to my skillset.’

While in Africa, he met with dozens of other young people from around the world who were also doing the DofE.

‘The common ground was the DofE. It is just amazing how different countries and cultures are brought together. We were brought together by this one scheme,’ he said.

Mr Modha, who works as a freelance climbing coach and for IT firm Oracle, said he was presented with his gold award by Prince Edward.

‘It was an honour to meet Prince Edward. When you complete your gold award it is the pinnacle moment. It goes to show that if you stay consistent and follow it all the way through, you are rewarded. It was a surreal moment,’ he said.

He added that the DofE ‘unlocked’ his ‘hidden passion’ for mountaineering.

Dame Kelly Holmes got a silver award, while footballer Kevin Keegan and Olympian Tessa Sanderson achieved bronze. Other notable alumni include singer Katherine Jenkins, actress Ashley Jensen and adventurer Ben Fogle.

The scheme is arguably the duke’s greatest legacy, having helped young people learn new skills, confidence and resilience – improving their life chances and employability.

But it did not receive such a warm reception when he first mooted the idea, with the then minister of education Sir David Eccles commenting: ‘I hear you’re trying to invent something like the Hitler Youth.’

Nevertheless, the concept got off the ground in February 1956 and after the first year 7,000 boys had started a DofE programme and 1,000 awards had been achieved.

By the second year, other small-scale pilots were launched overseas and a programme for girls had been set up.

In the 1970s, the DofE began partnering with businesses to help young people amid a rising tide of youth unemployment.

Today, employers actively look for DofE award holders when they are recruiting. At any one time, more than 300,000 people are taking part in DofE programmes.

Philip’s former headmaster, Kurt Hahn – a German Jew who fled the Nazis – was a huge influence on Philip’s life.

In 1934 he established Gordonstoun, the Scottish private school. Philip, who had moved to the UK from Germany, was one of his first pupils.

At Gordonstoun, the boys rose at 6.30am for a cold shower and a run.

Hahn, who died in 1974, had been concerned with the ‘decline of modern youth’ and pinpointed antidotes, such as fitness training, expeditions and projects.

His motto was ‘There is more in you than you think’ and it was a philosophy that would leave a lasting impression on the young prince – and one that still resonates with the awards today.

Hahn created the Moray Badge, which Philip himself gained while at the school.

It was such a success that Hahn wanted to make the award a national one and persuaded Philip to launch it under his name.

It takes six months each to complete the bronze and silver awards, and 12 months for the gold. It is open to everyone aged 14 to 24.

Nowadays, there are four main sections of a DofE programme – volunteering, physical, skills and expedition. For gold, participants also complete a residential section.

The awards have moved with the times and now include activities such as vlogging, kite-surfing and DJing alongside traditional pursuits such as bell-ringing and cross stitch.

Awards are achieved through schools, colleges, universities, youth clubs, businesses, housing associations and even in young offender institutions. Heathrow and British Gas are among the companies which deliver the scheme to their young employees.

Research has found those who complete an award are more likely to be retained by the organisation and promoted.

The intake of 2019/20 saw record-breaking numbers of young people start the DofE scheme, with 295,490 entering the programme, up 2.6 per cent.

Of those, 72,577 came from disadvantaged backgrounds. A record 159,051 awards were presented.

The prince in an interview once gave a very modest account of his involvement with the DofE.

Philip said: ‘I don’t run it – I’ve said it’s all fairly second-hand the whole business. I mean, I eventually got landed with the responsibility or the credit for it.’

Prince Philip set up the DofE scheme in 1956 after being urged by his former headmaster at Gordonstoun, Kurt Hahn (pictured), to replicate an award he had established for students at his school. Above: Philip with Dr Hahn

Philip’s youngest son, Prince Edward, attained his gold award in 1986 and was pictured laughing as he was presented with it by his father

Prince Philip presenting DofE badges and certificates to teenagers at the Liverpool Boys’ Association grounds in 1958

Shropshire winners of the Duke of Edinburgh gold award attending a reception held by Prince Philip at Buckingham Palace in 1972

The Duke of Edinburgh is pictured talking to award winners in the West Midlands in 1989 – when the scheme had already been running for more than 30 years


Olympic gold medallist Dame Kelly Holmes completes the silver DofE award when she was younger. She is pictured above in 2016. Former England manager Kevin Keegan also has a DofE award

Anyone who achieves a gold award is invited to a presentation attended by a member of the Royal Family. The duke himself attended more than 500 ceremonies.

After his father’s death last year, Prince Edward took over as patron.

Ruth Marvel, CEO of The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, said: ‘Today is an opportunity to celebrate The Duke’s incredible legacy and his vision in creating the DofE charity which has helped generations of young people develop the skills, resilience and self-belief they need to thrive, whatever life throws at them.

‘The Duke founded the DofE because he knew that, with the right opportunities, young people’s potential is limitless. 

‘Six decades on, the hundreds of thousands of young people doing their DofE continue to prove him right every day – discovering new talents and making a positive difference in communities all over the UK.’

Following the Duke’s death, the DofE launched the Living Legacy Fund in his memory, with the aim of helping a million young people by 2026. 

The DofE said that in the last 12 months it has started a youth ambassador programme and initiated projects to help the most marginalised young people by supporting youth organisations in deprived areas. 

Today’s service is being attended by more than 30 foreign royals, Philip’s family and friends and 500 representatives from charities and organisations of which he was patron.  

The Queen and Philip were married in the Abbey in November 1947 and it holds special memories.

About 1,800 guests will be there. By contrast, his funeral was limited to 30 people because of Covid restrictions.

Prince Philip is seen talking with two gold award winners at a summer reception at Buckingham Palace in 1969

Boys from the Garth Secondary Boys School, Morden, Surrey, taking part in an endurance test in 1957, the year after the DofE was founded

Prince Philip is seen presenting awards in 1986. After founding the DofE award scheme in 1956, Prince Philip continued to maintain a keen interest in its progress

The Duke of York will attend, even though he paid millions this month to settle a civil sexual assault case. He denies wrongdoing.

But the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are not returning from the US for the service, although Harry plans to go to Holland next month to attend the Invictus Games. 

Other guests will include representatives from UK Government, the armed forces and the devolved administrations, realm High Commissioners, representatives of overseas territories, members of the Queen and the duke’s household, representatives from the duke’s regimental affiliations in the UK and the Commonwealth, as well as the clergy and other faiths.

Members of several European royal families, who also distantly related to both the Queen and Philip, including the Spanish and Belgian families, have announced their intention to be there.

A Palace spokesman said last week: ‘The service will give thanks for The Duke of Edinburgh’s dedication to family, nation and Commonwealth and recognise the importance of his legacy in creating opportunities for young people, promoting environmental stewardship and conservation, and supporting the armed forces.

‘The service will in particular pay tribute to The Duke of Edinburgh’s contribution to public life and steadfast support for the over 700 charitable organisations with which His Royal Highness was associated throughout his life.’

The Westminster Abbey and the Chapel Royal Choirs will provide music during the service.

Treasured moments with Prince Philip: Royal family shares video montage of the Duke of Edinburgh’s life ahead of his memorial service which will see 1,800 guests in attendance

The royal family has shared a sweet video tribute to Prince Philip ahead of his memorial service today.

The 30-second trailer, shared to Twitter, includes footage of the Duke of Edinburgh as a young man, clips during his military service as well as videos of him with a young Prince Charles and Princess Anne waiving from the Buckingham Palace balcony alongside the Queen.

Smiling throughout, the video shows clips of him laughing, working and giving speeches before ending with a a poignant photo of him wearing his war medals.

The royal family has shared a sweet video tribute to Prince Philip ahead of his memorial service tomorrow

The Duke of Edinburgh died aged 99 on April 9th last year. Tomorrow’s memorial is to mark the one-year anniversary of his death and will see senior royals as well as close friends and family pay tribute. 

It will be a larger affair than his funeral, which was held under Covid-19 lockdown restrictions and saw only 30 people able to attend.

The tweet reads: ‘A Service of Thanksgiving for the life of The Duke of Edinburgh will be broadcast live from Westminster Abbey  tomorrow. At BBC one, 10.30’.

The Queen is still expected to attend tomorrow’s memorial service for Prince Philip because she feels it is ‘very important’ to be there but won’t be in a wheelchair despite her mobility issues, a royal expert said today. 

Her Majesty will joined by more than 30 foreign royals, Philip’s family and friends and 500 representatives from charities and organisations of which he was patron.

 The head of state has recently been forced to pull out of engagements because of ill health and old age – and could not attend the Commonwealth Day service on March 14 due to concerns about her mobility and comfort.

The Duke of Edinburgh died aged 99 on April 9th last year. Tomorrow’s memorial is to mark the one-year anniversary of his death and will see senior royals as well as close friends and family pay tribute. The clip includes footage of him waving from the Buckingham Palace balcony with The Queen and a young Princess Anne and Prince Charles

 Asked whether the Queen will attend the service tomorrow, royal author Angela Levin told Sky News this morning: ‘Well she says yes, because she’s now got her golf, little car and it’s big enough to take the corgis in as well.

 ‘She won’t take them obviously to the thanksgiving service, but I think that will give her the mobility she wants.

And she didn’t want to be in a wheelchair because she wants to be dignified and she doesn’t want to look as if she’s really, really old despite her age.

‘And this is actually quite zany, and if they can get her into her position without everybody watching and seeing how difficult it is for her to walk, I think it will work very well.

The Duke of Edinburgh died aged 99 on April 9th last year. Tomorrow’s memorial is to mark the one-year anniversary of his death and will see senior royals as well as close friends and family pay tribute.

The clip includes photos of him working, pictured, he died aged 99 on April 9th last year

The 30-second trailer, shared to Twitter, includes footage of the Duke of Edinburgh as a young man and giving speeches throughout his life

‘She looks much, much better and it’s very important for her to appear.

‘And I think we’ve been told that she will, she hasn’t said she’s going to leave it until the absolute last minute and I think it would be heartbreaking for her not to be able to get there.’

The Queen and Philip were married in the Abbey in November 1947 and it holds many special memories.

About 1,800 guests will be there. By contrast, his funeral was limited to 30 people because of Covid restrictions.

The Duke of York will attend, even though he paid millions this month to settle a civil sexual assault case. He denies wrongdoing.

The trailer shows photos of him as a young man right through to his 90s

But the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are not returning from the US for the service, although Harry plans to go to Holland next month to attend the Invictus Games.

Palace and Abbey aides will probably take steps to ensure that the event is less taxing for the Queen. She may well arrive at a side entrance away from cameras and take a shorter route to her seat. The floor of the ancient abbey is uneven, so it is also likely that she will use her walking stick.

The memorial service will pay tribute to Philip’s dedication to ‘family, nation and Commonwealth’, his contribution to public life and his steadfast support to his charities, Buckingham Palace said last week.

Smiling throughout, the video shows clips of him laughing, working and giving speeches before ending with a a poignant photo of him wearing his war medals (pictured)

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, the youth scheme set up by Philip in 1956, will feature prominently, with a special tribute delivered by a Gold Award holder.

In recognition of Philip’s long-held relationship with the armed forces, the Band of the Royal Marines will provide music before and after the service.

Other guests will include representatives from UK Government, the armed forces and the devolved administrations, realm High Commissioners, representatives of overseas territories, members of the Queen and the duke’s household, representatives from the duke’s regimental affiliations in the UK and the Commonwealth, as well as the clergy and other faiths.

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