The last royal funeral: Pictures show how different Prince Philip's ceremony will be

Rebecca Taylor
·Royal Correspondent
·6-min read

Watch: Windsor gets ready for Prince Philip's funeral

On Saturday, a royal funeral like no other will take place as the Duke of Edinburgh is laid to rest at Windsor Castle.

The funeral has to comply with the UK's current coronavirus guidelines, which means the guest list was trimmed down from about 800 to 30.

Mourners will wear face masks, and many of them will be sat alone inside the quire of St George's Chapel.

The images will be a stark contrast to the last major royal funeral, when the Queen Mother was laid to rest on 9 April 2002.

She lay in state for three days before her funeral, at Westminster Hall.

Crowds of hundreds of thousands of people queued to pay their respects to the much-loved Queen Mother who saw Britain through the Second World War. An estimated 200,000 people paid respects to her at the hall.

403364 17: Crowds gather to pay their respects to the Queen Mother April 5, 2002 as her ceremonial procession makes its way down the Mall in London. The Queen Mother will lie in state in Westminster Hall before her funeral in four days. (Photo by Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)
Crowds gathered to pay their respects to the Queen Mother on 5 April, 2002 as her ceremonial procession made its way down the Mall in London. (Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM:  Mourners queue-up on the over bank of the river Thames to get to Westminster Hall where the Queen mother's coffin lies in-state in London 05 april 2002. Westminster Hall will remain open to the public. AFP PHOTO NICOLAS ASFOURI (Photo credit should read NICOLAS ASFOURI/AFP via Getty Images)
Mourners queue-up on the over bank of the river Thames to get to Westminster Hall where the Queen mother's coffin was lying in state in April 2002. (Nicolas Asfouri/AFP via Getty Images)
403604 02: The hearse carrying the coffin of the Queen Mother arrives at Windsor Castle after her funeral service in London April 9, 2002 in Windsor. (Photo by Julian Herbert/Getty Images)
Her coffin was taken to Windsor Castle after her funeral service in London on 9 April, 2002. (Julian Herbert/Getty Images)

Some 11,887 police staff and 1,306 civilian staff were deployed from the day the Queen Mother died, 30 March 2002, until to the day of the funeral on 9 April.

Members of the public threw flowers as the coffin passed by and thousands of tributes were laid on the Mall.

After the procession of her coffin to lie in state, a Vigil of the Princes was mounted by Prince Charles, Prince Edward, Prince Edward and David Armstrong-Jones, the Viscount Linley. 

When a two minute silence was held at 11.30am on the day of the funeral the hundred thousand strong crowd stood in near silence.

Then Dean of Westminster Dr Wesley Carr said it was “remarkable” that a crowd so large were so quiet.

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM:  British Queen Mother's coffin is transported on a gun carriage along the London Mall 05 April 2002, en-route to Westminster Hall, where she will lay until the funeral on 09 April 2002.    AFP PHOTO     FRANCOIS GUILLOT WPA POOL (Photo credit should read FRANCOIS GUILLOT/AFP via Getty Images)
The Queen Mother's coffin transported on a gun carriage along the London Mall on 5 April 2002, en-route to Westminster Hall. (Francois Guillot/AFP)
403363 01: Prince Charles (C) with other members of the British Royal Family walk behind a coffin bearing the Queen Mother April 5, 2002 as her ceremonial procession makes its way down The Mall in London. The Queen Mother's body will lie in state in Westminster Hall before her funeral in four days. (Photo by Sion Touhig/Getty Images)
Prince Charles (C) with other members of the British Royal Family walking behind the coffin bearing the Queen Mother on 5 April, 2002 in her ceremonial procession down The Mall in London. (Sion Touhig/Getty Images)
403364 06: Britain's Prince Charles (R), Prince Phillip (C) and Prince Andrew (L) lead Prince Harry and other Royals as they walk behind the coffin bearing the Queen Mother April 5, 2002 as her ceremonial procession makes its way down the Mall in London. The Queen Mother's body will lie in state in Westminster Hall before her funeral in four days. (Photo by Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)
Prince Charles (R), Prince Phillip (C) and Prince Andrew (L) led Prince Harry and other Royals behind the coffin on 5 April, 2002 in her ceremonial procession. (Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)

The funeral at Westminster Abbey had 2,200 guests. Famous faces included 35 members of the royal family, four former Prime Ministers, US First Lady Laura Bush and Dame Vera Lynn.

The Duke of Edinburgh, Prince William, the Duke of York, the Princess Royal, the Prince of Wales and Peter Phillips stood in front of the coffin in Westminster Abbey.

Prince Charles appeared to be holding back tears as he said goodbye to his grandmother.

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM:  Prince Charles stands vigil beside the Queen Mother's coffin while it lies-in-state at Westminster Hall in London 08 April 2002. The funeral ceremony will be held at Westminster Abbey 09 April. AFP PHOTO Adrian DENNIS WPA POOL (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)
Prince Charles stands vigil beside the Queen Mother's coffin while it lies-in-state at Westminster Hall in London 8 April 2002. (Adrian Dennis/AFP)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM:  Prince Charles (C) and the Duke of York (R) stand vigil beside the Queen Mother's coffin while it lies-in-state at Westminster Hall in London 08 April 2002. The funeral ceremony will be held at Westminster Abbey 09 April. AFP PHOTO Adrian DENNIS WPA POOL (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)
Prince Charles (C) and the Duke of York (R) stand vigil beside the Queen Mother's coffin at Westminster Hall. (Adrian Dennis/AFP via Getty Images)

The Archbishop of Canterbury, then Dr George Carey thanked the Queen Mother for her "faithful duty and unwearied service.”

"Like the sun, she bathed us in her warm glow."

The coffin was carried out of Westminster Abbey and the Duke of York, Prince William, the Prince of Wales, Prince Harry, the Duke of Edinburgh, the Princess Royal, Peter Phillips and Prince Edward followed behind.

The coffin was then driven from Westminster Abbey to St George’s Chapel in Windsor where she was buried alongside her husband George VI and their daughter HRH Princess Margaret.

403541 12: Britain's Prince Charles (R) Prince Andrew (L) and Prince William (C) walk behind the Gun Carriage bearing the coffin of the Queen Mother April 9, 2002 as it makes its way to Westminster Abbey during her state funeral April 9, 2002 in London. (Photo by Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)
Prince Charles (R) Prince Andrew (L) and Prince William (C) behind the Gun Carriage bearing the coffin of the Queen Mother on 9 April, 2002 on the way to Westminster Abbey during her state funeral. (Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)
403595 01: (L to R) Britain's Prince Andrew, Prince Charles, The Duke of Edinburgh, Princess Anne and Prince Edward follow the body of the Queen Mother to Westminster Abbey during her funeral April 9, 2002 in London. The coffin will be taken from Westminster Abbey in a hearse to Windsor where she will be interred with her husband King George VI. (Photo by Hugo Philpott/Getty Images)
Prince Andrew, Prince Charles, The Duke of Edinburgh, Princess Anne and Prince Edward following the body of the Queen Mother to Westminster Abbey during her funeral on 9 April 2002 in London. (Hugo Philpott/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM:  The Queen leaves Westminster Abbey with the Duke of Edinburgh after the funeral ceremony of the Queen Mother 09 April 2002 in London. The funeral is the culmination of more than a week of mourning for the royal matriarch, who died March 30 at the age of 101. AFP PHOTO FRANCOIS GUILLOT (Photo credit should read FRANCOIS GUILLOT/AFP via Getty Images)
The Queen leaving Westminster Abbey with the Duke of Edinburgh after the funeral ceremony of the Queen Mother 9 April 2002 (Francois Guillot/AFP via Getty Images)

On the eve of the funeral in April 2002, the Queen had delivered a televised address to the nation and the Commonwealth about her mother.

She said: "I thank you for the support you are giving me and my family as we come to terms with her death and the void she has left in our midst."

She added: "Over the years I have met many people who have had to cope with family loss, sometimes in the most tragic of circumstances.

"So I count myself fortunate that my mother was blessed with a long and happy life.

"She had an infectious zest for living, and this remained with her until the very end.

'I know too that her faith was always a great strength to her."

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother is placed on catafalque at Westminster Abbey. Following the funeral service the Queen Mother's coffin will be taken to St George's Chapel in Windsor, where she will be laid to rest next to her husband, King George VI.
The coffin of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother is placed on catafalque at Westminster Abbey during her funeral in 2002. (PA Images)
The British Royal family watch as the coffin of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother is prepared to be carried from Westminster Abbey at the end of her funeral service 09 April 2002. After the service, the Queen Mother's coffin will be taken to St George's Chapel in Windsor, where she will be laid to rest next to her husband King George VI.  
WPA SOLO ROTA (Photo by BEN CURTIS / EPA/SOLO ROTA / AFP)        (Photo credit should read BEN CURTIS/AFP via Getty Images)
The British Royal family watch as the coffin of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother is prepared to be carried from Westminster Abbey at the end of her funeral service. (Ben Curtis/ EPA/SOLO ROTA / AFP)
Prince Charles (L) and his sons  Prince Harry (C) and Prince William arrive at Westminster Hall before following the gun carriage carrying coffin of the Queen Mother en-route to Westminster Abbey 09 April 2002 for the Queen Mother's funeral service.  The funeral is the culmination of more than a week of mourning for the royal matriarch, who died March 30 at the age of 101.   AFP PHOTO WPA POOL GERRY PENNY (Photo credit should read GERRY PENNY/AFP via Getty Images)
Prince Charles (L) and his sons Prince Harry (C) and Prince William arrive at Westminster Hall before following the gun carriage carrying coffin of the Queen Mother en-route to Westminster Abbey. (Gerry Penny/AFP via Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM:  The Queen Mother's coffin passes mourners and police before being carried to The Queens Chapel in St. James Palace in London, Tuesday 02 April 2002, where it will lay until Friday 05 April before moved to Westminister Hall. The funeral will be held in Westminister Abbey on Tuesday 09 April.   AFP PHOTO   GERRY PENNY (Photo credit should read GERRY PENNY/AFP via Getty Images)
The Queen Mother's coffin passes mourners and police before being carried to The Queens Chapel in St. James Palace on 2 April 2002. (Gerry Penny/AFP via Getty Images)

For the Duke of Edinburgh, who reportedly "didn't want a fuss", the scaled back ceremony may well have suited his tastes.

"He doesn’t see himself as important enough for that," an aide once said when asked about the duke’s opinions on lying in state.

Crowds are urged to stay away from Windsor on Saturday, for what will be a markedly different royal funeral.

Inside the quire of St George's Chapel, the image of a Queen, sat alone, will be striking.

Additional reporting by Kate Eagles.

Watch: Edward and Sophie view hundreds of flowers for Prince Philip