The Queen wiped her eyes as she accompanied Prince Philip‘s coffin on its final journey from Windsor Castle to St George’s Chapel today – where she will have to sit alone during the service due to Covid rules.
The 94-year-old monarch arrived as the national anthem played and the royal Bentley stopped next to her beloved husband’s coffin, where she poignantly paused for a moment of reflection as cannons fired and bells tolled in remembrance of the duke.
She was then driven to St George’s Chapel with her lady-in-waiting Lady Susan Hussey, 81, before being sat alone at the front of the church while her husband of 73 years is laid to rest.
Lady Hussey is the is the fifth and youngest daughter of Geoffrey Waldegrave, 12th Earl Waldegrave and Mary Hermione, Countess Waldegrave, and was married to the late BBC chairman Marmaduke Hussey.
Such is her bond with the royal family that Lady Susan is one of the Duke of Cambridge’s godparents, and also attended his confirmation in 1997.
During the past year she joined the Queen and Philip in HMS Bubble as one of about 20 staff who cared for the royal couple in lockdown at Windsor Castle.
Her Majesty, with tears in her eyes, looks on after she had a moment of quiet reflection by her husband’s coffin
The Queen wipes a tear from her eyes as she arrives behind her husband’s coffin as Prince Philip’s funeral began this afternoon
The Queen walked alone into the church as she begins life without her husband of 73 years
The masked Queen, wearing a mask and dressed in all black, is led to her seat in the chapel where she sat alone
The Queen arrives behind her husband’s coffin as his funeral began this afternoon
Today, she accompanied the Queen in the State Bentley as she left the castle to join the rear of the procession carrying Philip’s coffin to St George’s Chapel.
Although entering the chapel, Lady Susan was there as a working household member and not one of the 30 guests.
Remaining nearby in case the Queen should need her, Lady Susan was not seated with the Windsors in the Quire, nor in the Nave, but elsewhere in the chapel.
Ladies-in-waiting are the unsung members of the Queen’s household and are personally chosen by the monarch.
They have a variety of duties including attending to private and personal matters for the Queen and handling her correspondence.
They also assist the Queen on official engagements, from handing her money to being passed the bouquets of flowers presented to her.
In 2001, Lady Susan passed the Queen a pound coin so she could buy The Big Issue from a magazine seller while on an official day trip to Brighton.
She has also been present at unique moments in history – such as on the Spirit of Chartwell barge with the Queen and other members of the royal family for the Diamond Jubilee river pageant on the Thames in 2012.
This is the funeral procession for tomorrow’s funeral, where William and Harry will not stand next to eachother with the Queen following behind in her car
Lady Hussey is the is the fifth and youngest daughter of Geoffrey Waldegrave, 12th Earl Waldegrave and Mary Hermione, Countess Waldegrave, and was married to the late BBC chairman Marmaduke Hussey
The Duke of Cambridge and Duke of Sussex, who have a troubled relationship, did not walk shoulder to shoulder with their cousin Peter Phillips between them
The Royal Family’s procession was led by Prince Charles and Princess Anne who looked emotional following the casket
Prince Philip’s coffin has emerged from Windsor Castle as the Royal Family joined the Queen in mourning her husband at his funeral
The Duke of Edinburgh’s casket was covered in his personal standard and carried his sword, naval cap and a wreath of flowers as masked pallbearers lowered him on to his extraordinary self-designed Land Rover hearse
Ladies-in-waiting often serve the Queen for more than 50 years and act as both friends and loyal assistants, and their discretion and support will be invaluable as the Queen mourns.
The late Marmaduke Hussey, who died in 2006, was BBC chairman when Diana, Princess of Wales gave her 1995 Panorama interview but, in accordance with tradition, he was not given a preview.
“Duke” Hussey was a leading newspaper industry executive for decades, taking the prestigious BBC post when he retired from News International.
Lady Susan is also a sister of the former Tory Cabinet minister William Waldegrave.
The Queen’s ladies-in-waiting, personally chosen by the monarch, have a variety of duties including attending to private and personal matters for the Queen and handling her correspondence.
They have been part of HMS Bubble – the name given to the reduced selection of around 20 staff attending to the Queen at Windsor during lockdown.
Some of the ladies-in-waiting have been with the Queen for more than 50 years and act as both friends and loyal assistants, and their discretion and support will be invaluable.
Members of the military march ahead of the funeral service at Prince Philip’s Windsor home
The detachments of service personnel from the military units the duke had a special relationship assembled on the green of the castle’s quadrangle – while lining its edge are troops from the Household Cavalry and the Foot Guards
The Foot Guards Band are seen marching ahead of the funeral of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh at Windsor Castle