Prince Harry excluded from family events after Philip's funeral

Gillian Wolski
·Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
·5-min read

Prince Harry is expected to be excluded from any royal family gatherings after Saturday's funeral for his grandfather, the Duke of Edinburgh, who died on Friday, April 9 at the age of 99.

The 36-year-old has been in quarantine at his former home, Frogmore Cottage since he arrived from Los Angeles on a British Airways flight just days after Prince Philip's passing.

Prince Harry pictured with his late grandfather, Prince Philip at the wedding of Lady Gabriella Windsor to Thomas Kingston at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on May 18, 2019
Prince Harry pictured with his late grandfather, Prince Philip in 2019. Photo: Getty Images.

'Shouldn't be spending time with anyone'

Even though he won't have finished his 14-day quarantine period before the ceremonial service at St George's Chapel, the Duke of Sussex has been granted permission to attend on "compassionate grounds."

However, as royal author Victoria Murphy has pointed out, Harry will need to return to quarantine after the funeral ends. 

"He has flown over here and he is allowed to, on compassionate grounds, attend the funeral service," Victoria told the Royally Obsessed podcast on Thursday.

"But he is supposed to be quarantining outside of that. So he shouldn't be spending time with anyone."

Even though a royal family gathering after the funeral is unlikely due to Britain's current COVID-19 restrictions if one did occur Harry would not be able to attend.

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A military band leaves Windsor Castle after taking part in a rehearsal ahead of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh's funeral on April 15, 2021 in Windsor, England Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh's ceremonial royal funeral will take place on April 17th at Windsor Castle.  (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
A military band rehearses at Windsor Castle ahead of Prince Philip's funeral on April 17. Photo: Getty Images.

Brothers divided

Prince Harry will also remain at arm's length from his brother, Prince William, 38, as they walk behind their grandfather's coffin from Windsor Castle to nearby St George's Chapel for the 3pm (UK time) service.

It's been confirmed that the men, who have only spoken over the phone since Harry's explosive tell-all interview with Oprah Winfrey, will not walk shoulder to shoulder in the procession.

Instead, they will be separated by cousin Peter Phillips, Princess Anne’s son, during the eight-minute journey.

The full procession will include Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Edward, Prince Andrew, Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence and The Earl of Snowdon.

At Philip's personal request, there will also be six non-royals accompanying the party: his personal protection officer, private secretary, two pages and two valets.

Queen Elizabeth II wearing a black coat, hat and face mask during a ceremony in Westminster Abbey to mark the centenary of the burial of the Unknown Warrior on November 4, 2020
The Queen (pictured in November 2020) will have to sit alone at her husband's funeral due to COVID-19 restrictions. Photo: Getty Images.

Queen to 'sit alone'

Harry isn't the only royal who might feel isolated on the day. The Queen, 94, will have to 'sit alone' at the funeral for her late husband due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Despite restrictions easing after Britain's third lockdown, members of different household 'bubbles' are required to stay two metres away from one another.

The Queen and Prince Philip spent the majority of the pandemic at Windsor Castle attended by a reduced household staff of about 20. Their children and grandchildren stayed elsewhere in their own bubbles, meaning Her Majesty will have to sit alone to farewell her husband of over seven decades.

That's unless a staff member from her Windsor bubble — nicknamed 'HMS Bubble' — also attends which appears to be the case.

Brigadier Archie Miller-Bakewell, Philip’s private secretary is expected to be part of the COVID-imposed 30-person guest list permitted inside the chapel and so will be able to support the Queen through what will no doubt be a difficult time.

Other royals who will likely have to keep their distance during the service are Peter Philips, Princess Anne's son, and US-based Prince Harry who is currently in quarantine after flying into London last weekend.

The Queen's eldest son, Prince Charles and his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall will sit together as they're in the same bubble, as are Prince William and Kate Middleton.

All mourners will have to wear face coverings and there will be no singing of hymns in line with coronavirus guidelines.

Social distancing requirements mean that carefully laid plans for 'Operation Forth Bridge' — the codename for the duke's funeral — had to be scaled back considerably.

The 42km procession that was originally intended for the day had to be reduced to an eight-minute walk from Windsor Castle to St George's Chapel where the funeral service will be held.

Both the procession and the service are closed to the public and will instead be broadcast live on the BBC.

Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, visits the Field of Remembrance in London, England.
The Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip, died last week at age 99. Photo: AP

How to watch Prince Philip's funeral in Australia

Here's how Aussie viewers can watch Prince Philip's funeral:

On Channel 9 and 9Now:

The 9NEWS Special, The Funeral of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, will begin at 11pm AEST Saturday and run through to 1am Sunday.

In WA, the coverage will begin at 9pm local time and in SA and NT it will begin at 10.30pm local time.

Hosts Brett McLeod and Sophie Walsh will anchor the coverage from Australia and will be joined by royal experts Dickie Arbiter and Victoria Murphy in Windsor.

Before midnight, Nine will hand over to the BBC for the official coverage of the funeral.

An encore of the funeral special coverage from the night before will be broadcast at 5am Sunday for those who missed it.

On Channel 7 and 7plus:

7News' special live coverage of the ceremonial royal funeral begins at 5.00pm AEST on Channel 7 and 7plus. Following 7NEWS at 6.00, coverage will recommence from 9.30pm AEST (check local guides).

The service will be replayed, commercial-free, from 10am on 7TWO after Weekend Sunrise.

On ABC:

ABC News will also show the funeral, with coverage running from 11pm Saturday to 2am Sunday.

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