13 Million UK People Tune In For Live TV Coverage Of Prince Philip’s Funeral | Prince philip

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Over 13 million people in the UK watched live television coverage of the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral which saw a mourning queen, masked and sitting alone, in her first public appearance since her husband’s death from 73 years old.

The BBC’s coverage of the reduced military procession and service from St George’s Chapel to Windsor Castle drew 11 million viewers at its peak, ITV seeing 2.1 million and Sky around 450,000. The Queen’s funeral mother in 2002 were followed by 10.4 million people, while that of Diana, Princess of Wales, reached a record 32 million in 1997.

The service for Prince Philip incorporated an impressive military spectacle despite Covid-19 restrictions, which limited mourners to 30, without a wake.

Nothing has been heard from the monarch since Philip’s death. The only words made public were on her handwritten card accompanying her wreath of white lilies, freesias, roses, jasmine and sweet peas. It simply read: “In a loving memory”. Her signature was obscured by the flowers, but according to some reports, she had signed it “Lilibet”, the name she was a child by her family and which she used on her flowers at her mother’s funeral.

Having always walked two steps behind his wife in official engagements, Saturday’s funeral saw the monarch follow her husband as she joined the rear of the motorcade in Bentley State. Her vehicle briefly stopped beside her custom Land Rover hearse and she was able to look at the Duke’s coffin in place, draped in her personal banner and topped by her naval cap and sword.

The funeral gave signs of growing rapprochement within the divided royal family. As the Dukes of Cambridge and Sussex, whose fault is well documented, walked behind the coffin separated by their cousin, Peter Phillips, and were divided by a driveway inside the chapel, they were later seen chatting with the Duchess of Cambridge.

The Duke of Cambridge, Peter Phillips and The Duke of Sussex walk behind the Land Rover hearse.
The Duke of Cambridge, Peter Phillips and The Duke of Sussex walk behind the Land Rover hearse. Photographie: WPA / Getty Images

Harry has reportedly been in segregation at Frogmore Cottage, his former marital home in Windsor, since arriving from California a week ago. With his wife Meghan heavily pregnant with their second child, it is believed he is eager to return to the United States as soon as possible.

But this is the first time in over a year that he has seen his family. After the Sussexes’ inflammatory interview with Oprah Winfrey, there is undoubtedly a lot to discuss, especially between Harry and his father, Prince Charles.

While the period of national mourning for the Duke, who died on April 9 at the age of 99, is now over, the two-week period of royal mourning that his family observes is still relevant today. Meanwhile, the queen will mark her 95th birthdaye birthday Wednesday at Windsor Castle, where she and Philip had protected during the pandemic.

Prior to the funeral, the BBC had received 110,000 complaints about its coverage of Philip’s death, after clearing its schedules and mirroring coverage on BBC One, BBC Two and the news channel. The complaints were the highest number ever published in the UK over television programming.

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