The Queen will be forced to sit alone at Prince Philip’s funeral because of this heartwrenching rule

The Duke of Edinburgh's funeral will take place on April 17

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II looks on during a visit to the Science Museum on March 07, 2019 in London, England
(Image credit: Photo by Simon Dawson/WPA Pool/Getty Images)

The Queen will be forced to sit alone at Prince Philip’s funeral service on April 17 due to a strict rule.

The Queen and the wider Royal Family were left devastated last week as they announced the tragic news that Prince Philip had passed away at Windsor Castle. After being married for over seven decades, the monarch described his loss as leaving a “huge void” in her life. Though she will have wonderful memories and will think back on his humorous quips fondly, the Queen will no doubt be relying greatly on her loved ones for support. 

It’s been suggested that her daughter-in-law, Sophie, Countess of Wessex has been a “tremendous source of comfort” to her. Whilst her grandson Prince William’s touching tribute photo to the Duke of Edinburgh reaffirmed his commitment to supporting her and getting “on with the job”, just as Philip would want. 

Prince Philip’s funeral service will take place on Saturday, April 17 at St George’s Chapel. The funeral won’t be a state one, as requested by Philip, though it's thought Prince William and Prince Harry will walk shoulder to shoulder and many royal family members will wear their military uniforms.

However, though many key members of the Royal Family will be in attendance, the Queen won’t be able to sit with them during the funeral because of one heart-breaking rule.

Why will the Queen sit alone at Prince Philip’s funeral?

Though the prospect of the Queen sitting alone at her beloved husband’s funeral is heartwrenching, there is one strict rule which makes this seem very likely to happen. Although this rule is in place to keep people safe, it may still be hard to bear. 

The current UK Covid-19 restrictions state that anyone attending a funeral must stay at least two metres apart from anyone not from their household. 

This means the Royal Family will be forced to spread out in St George’s Chapel. However, because the Queen doesn’t live on her own, she is not eligible to be in a support bubble.

This means that only a member of her Windsor Castle staff could potentially sit with her during Philip’s funeral.

Who might be able to sit with the Queen at Prince Philip's funeral?

According to The Telegraph, the Duke’s private secretary, Brigadier Archie Miller-Bakewell, is expected to be one of the 30 mourners allowed at the ceremony.

As he is part of Her Majesty’s bubble at Windsor, the publication suggests he may be the only attendee eligible by law to sit with the Queen.

But whilst the Queen may have to sit alone during Prince Philip’s funeral, that doesn’t mean that she is not fully supported by her loved ones.

Knowing they are there spread out throughout the chapel will likely still be of great comfort to her.

Emma Shacklock

Emma is a Royal Editor with eight years experience working in publishing. Her specialist areas include the British Royal Family, ranging from protocol to outfits. Alongside putting her royal knowledge to good use, Emma knows all there is to know about the latest TV shows on the BBC, ITV and more. When she’s not writing about the next unmissable show to add to your to-watch list or delving into royal protocol, Emma enjoys cooking, long walks and watching yet more crime dramas!