Prince Philip's Funeral: How to Watch It, and What to Expect

Due to coronavirus restrictions, the late Duke of Edinburgh will lie in state at Windsor Castle, followed by a private service at St. George's Chapel on Saturday, April 17.

The Duke of Edinburgh, the longest-serving consort who spent more than seven decades at Queen Elizabeth II’s side, has died. He was 99. Buckingham Palace confirmed the news on Friday, April 9. “It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh,” the palace said in a statement.

“His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle. Further announcements will be made in due course. The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss.”

Known around the world for his role beside the Queen (and his history of deeply problematic gaffes), people are curious about the funeral arrangements for the Prince, who fulfilled more than 20,000 royal engagements in the UK and abroad, along with raising four children and eight grandchildren.

a woman adds a bunch of flowers to a line of floral tributes against the railings at the front of buckingham palace in central london on april 9, 2021 after the announcement of the death of britains prince philip, duke of edinburgh   queen elizabeth iis husband prince philip, who recently spent more than a month in hospital and underwent a heart procedure, died on april 9, 2021, buckingham palace announced he was 99 photo by tolga akmen  afp photo by tolga akmenafp via getty images
A woman pays her respects to Prince Philip at Buckingham Palace following the announcement of his death on Friday.
TOLGA AKMENGetty Images

How can I watch Prince Philip's funeral?

The ceremonial service will begin on Saturday, April 17 at 2:40 PM local time (9:40 AM EST) at Windsor Castle. Preceded by a procession inside the grounds of the Castle, the funeral will begin at 3 PM in St. George’s Chapel with a national minute of silence to honor Prince Philip. According to the Palace, “The plans for the funeral are in line with The Duke of Edinburgh's own personal wishes, and the occasion will recognise and celebrate The Duke’s life and his more than 70 years of service to The Queen, the UK and the Commonwealth.”

In the U.K., the service will be broadcast live on the BBC, with a full schedule to be announced. You can also stream the funeral on BBC iPlayer on your computer or mobile device. We can anticipate the BBC to do rolling coverage on Prince Philip’s funeral, in line with their coverage following his death.

ITV will air the funeral from 1:15 to 4:30pm, with their website ITV Hub streaming. Sky News, on the other hand, is slated to cover the funeral throughout the day on both its TV station and YouTube channel.

In the U.S., you can watch the funeral on CBS, CBS News, and ET Live beginning at 9:30 AM ET. CBS News will broadcast a live special report at 9:30 AM ET, hosted by CBS This Morning co-host Gayle King. If you don’t have cable, you can stream CBS on Paramount Plus, YouTube TV, Sling TV, FuboTV, or wherever you stream live TV. Each of these services offer free trials, so you’ll be able to stream for free as long as you remember to cancel the trial.

According to a report by The Sun, Prince Philip’s funeral service inside St. George's Chapel is private and will not be televised. TV cameras are not allowed in the church for the service.

Will Prince Philip have a state funeral?

The Duke of Edinburgh will not have a state funeral or lie in state for the public in accordance with coronavirus restrictions, according to a statement released by the College of Arms. The Palace has largely practiced social distancing since the beginning of the pandemic.

“The funeral will not be a State Funeral and will not be preceded by a Lying-in-State. His Royal Highness’s body will lie at rest in Windsor Castle ahead of the funeral in St George’s Chapel. This is in line with custom and with His Royal Highness’s wishes,” the College of Arms said on Friday.

“The funeral arrangements have been revised in view of the prevailing circumstances arising from the COVID-19 pandemic and it is regretfully requested that members of the public do not attempt to attend or participate in any of the events that make up the funeral.”

Under normal circumstances, Prince Philip would be entitled to a state funeral. The arrangements would involve a military procession to Westminster Abbey where the public could pay their respects to the Duke. A service at Westminster Abbey or St. Paul’s Cathedral would follow, with the burial occurring at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle. The last state funeral occurred in 1952 following the death of King George VI, who is buried at St. George’s Chapel.

fallingbostel, germany   june 12  prince philip, duke of edinburgh presents operational service medals to the 4th battalion, the royal regiment of scotland on june 12, 2014 in fallingbostel, germany  photo by nigel treblingetty images
Nigel TreblinGetty Images

Will the royal family be able to attend the funeral?

Although the royal family has not confirmed details about the private service, we can guess that those royals who reside in the U.K. will be able to attend a likely social distanced service. The College of Arms has confirmed that Prince Philip’s body will lie in state at Windsor Castle, with the funeral taking place at St. George’s Chapel.

Due to coronavirus restrictions, funeral attendance is capped at 30 people. The Queen will likely have to make tough choices about who will be able to attend the service in person.

Will Meghan and Harry attend Prince Philip’s funeral?

It has been confirmed that Harry will attend Prince Philip’s funeral. A pregnant Meghan did not receive clearance from her doctors to travel and will remain in California.

The death of Prince Philip arrives at a turbulent moment for Buckingham Palace. Following Meghan and Harry’s tell-all interview with Oprah, the royals have been under fire for accusations of racism, among other things. The Sussexes were last in London in March 2020 to complete their final round of royal activities before permanently resigning from their official duties.

Writes royal reporter Omid Scobie in Harper's Bazaar: "Buckingham Palace’s confirmation that Peter Phillips will walk between the two as they make their way in the ceremonial procession to The Quire of the chapel finally answers the question. The brothers will also take seats apart from each other for the service itself, with the Duke of Cambridge seated next to Peter Phillips and the Duke of Sussex next to Lord Snowdon. No further explanation was given by palace officials for the separation of the two brothers; however, it was confirmed that final plans were signed off by the queen."

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