Entertainment Celebrity Royal William and Harry will walk separately in grandfather’s funeral procession
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William and Harry will walk separately in grandfather’s funeral procession

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Princes William and his brother Prince Harry, who have faced difficulties in their relationship in recent months, will walk separately in the funeral procession for Prince Philip.

Echoing the funeral of their mother Princess Diana after her death in 1997, when they were 15 and 12, the brothers will walk behind the coffin of their grandfather during the procession in Windsor on Saturday.

However, they will not walk side by side.

Instead, they will be separated by their cousin, Peter Phillips.

Prince William will be in front, as he is second in line to the throne after their father Prince Charles, followed by Peter and then Prince Harry.

Philip, the husband of the Queen, died last week aged 99. His funeral will be held entirely at Windsor Castle on Saturday, with no public allowed, because of the coronavirus restrictions that still apply in England.

William and Harry have had a tense time recently, which Prince Harry hinted at when he was interviewed by Oprah Winfrey in March.

He described their relationship as being one of “space at the moment” and that they were on “different paths” but said he loved his brother “to bits”.

A Buckingham Palace spokesman declined to comment if the procession reflected their relationship, according to the PA news agency.

It is thought that the royals might also be physically distancing as Buckingham Palace has said the event will follow strict coronavirus rules.

William and Harry will be separated in the funeral procession by their cousin Peter Phillips. Photo: Getty

When Prince Philip’s coffin is conveyed to church for his funeral service, it will be taken in a specially-commissioned Land Rover that the royal helped design.

Although the event has been scaled down, many traditional elements will remain, with a military procession inside the castle and pall bearers from units with close links to the duke.

However, in place of the usual hearse, Philip’s body will be taken from its current resting place to St George’s Chapel on the bespoke Land Rover, which has been modified to carry a coffin – in keeping with Philip’s plans for his funeral.

The Land Rover Defender that will transport Prince Philip’s coffin. Photo: Getty

Buckingham Palace said the duke started on the project with Land Rover 18 years ago.

The unlikely hearse is based on a Defender TD 130 chassis and then modified, with the open top rear section custom made to Philip’s specification.

It was painted “dark bronze green”, a colour used for many military Land Rovers.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told parliament on Monday it was fitting that Philip would be taken to his final resting place on a modified Land Rover.

“That vehicle’s unique and idiosyncratic silhouette reminds the world that he was above all a practical man, who could take something very traditional – whether a machine or indeed a great national institution – and find a way by his own ingenuity to improve it, to adapt it for the 20th or the 21st century,” Mr Johnson said.

British media has reported how Prince Harry has been isolating after flying in from his Los Angeles home at the weekend.

Another controversial figure, Prince Andrew, will also attend the funeral. Photo: Getty

Newspapers also reported on Wednesday that Prince Andrew, the duke of York and the Queen’s second son, had requested to wear his military uniform at the service.

The Daily Mail newspaper claimed the duke told the Queen he wished to attend the funeral in admiral uniform, despite holding a position as vice-admiral in the royal navy.

The paper added that he was due to be made an admiral on his birthday last year but this was postponed due to recent criticism he faced over his friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Buckingham Palace declined to comment on the story.

However, seemingly quashing the report, it was confirmed on Thursday the men will wear morning coats with their medals while the women will wear day dresses.

Funeral guest list

Buckingham Palace also announced that British and German relatives of Prince Philip will attend the scaled-back, 30-guest funeral.

The Queen, the couple’s four children, eight grandchildren, the Queen’s niece and nephew and three of her cousins will all attend the small, family service on Saturday.

In addition, the prince’s German relatives Bernhard, Hereditary Prince of Baden, Prince Donatus, Landgrave of Hesse and Prince Philipp of Hohenlohe-Langenburg will be there.

The Countess Mountbatten of Burma, a close friend of Prince Philip, will also attend.

Some of the spouses of the Queen’s children and grandchildren have been included on the guestlist.

But Meghan Markle, the Duchess of Sussex and Prince Harry’s wife, is not going due to her pregnancy.

According to PA, Buckingham Palace said the Queen had some “very difficult” decisions regarding who was allowed to attend the funeral under England’s current strict coronavirus rules.

Originally, 800 people would have been invited to the late royal consort’s funeral. Under the new rules only 30 people are allowed to attend.