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Peter Phillips: Not being able to hug the Queen was the hardest part of Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral

Not being able to hug the Queen was the hardest part of the Duke of Edinburgh‘s funeral, Peter Phillips has said.

The Queen’s eldest grandchild, 43, added that  poignant images of The Queen sitting alone in St. George’s Chapel ‘would be relatable for many families during the pandemic’.   

Peter, the son of Anne, Princess Royal and her first husband Captain Mark Phillips, said that his grandfather was a ‘hugely influential’ in the lives of him and his cousins and that he’ll be ‘sorely missed’.

The father-of-two, who does not hold a royal title and divorced from his wife Autumn Phillips earlier this year,  was speaking ahead of Gatcombe Park Food and Drink Festival which is his held on his mother’s Gloucestershire estate where he also lives.

Not being able to hug the Queen was the hardest part of the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral, Peter Phillips has said. The Queen is pictured alone at St George’s Chapel during the funeral. The Queen’s eldest grandchild, 43, added that poignant images of The Queen sitting alone in St. George’s Chapel ‘would be relatable for many families during the pandemic’.

The 17th-in-line to the throne, who has worked as corporate hospitality manager since graduating from University of Exeter, told the BBC: ‘He lived a remarkable life and if any of us can even live half the life that he did, we would all be extraordinarily happy,’

‘Our thoughts immediately went to my grandmother. We’ve been trying to support her as much as we can.’

In photos that were seen around the world, the Queen, 95, was pictured sitting alone at her husband’s funeral as social distancing laws meant her family couldn’t sit with her.

Prince Philip, who died on 9th April, aged 99, at Windsor Castle, was married to the Queen for 74 years. 

Peter, the son of Anne, Princess Royal and her first husband Captain Mark Phillips, said that his grandfather was a 'hugely influential' in the lives of him and his cousins and that he'll be 'sorely missed'.

Peter, the son of Anne, Princess Royal and her first husband Captain Mark Phillips, said that his grandfather was a ‘hugely influential’ in the lives of him and his cousins and that he’ll be ‘sorely missed’.

‘Everybody saw the image of Her Majesty sitting alone. It would have been the same for any other family, the hardest part is not being able to hug those closest to the person who’s been lost,’ Peter added.

‘It’s the same for a lot of families. There have been some great sadnesses but at the same time you’ve got to try to take the positives out of these situations, whether that be new life, or happy memories, that’s what you’ve got to focus on,’ he went on.

Peter also said that the lockdown has allowed the Queen to spend more time with his family, including his daughters Savannah, 10, and Isla, nine.  

‘They’re exceptionally lucky to have had two great-grandparents who have lived as long as they have. My children certainly appreciate that and know that it’s something special,’ he said.

Prince Philip, who died on 9th April, aged 99, at Windsor Castle, was married to the Queen for 74 years

Prince Philip, who died on 9th April, aged 99, at Windsor Castle, was married to the Queen for 74 years

Peter, who is often seen at countryside events alongside his sister Zara, added that his passion for the countryside comes from his grandfather.        

‘He was such a fixture of all of our lives. He is sorely missed,’ he said. 

Peter recently finalised with divorce with ex-wife Autumn, 42, after telling their families of their ‘amicable’ decision to end their marriage two years ago.

Montreal-born Autumn Kelly was a management consultant when she met Phillips at the 2003 Canadian Grand Prix.

At the time, he was working for the Williams Formula 1 team. She is said not to have known until six weeks later, when she saw him on television, that he was the Queen’s grandson.

She then moved to Britain and married Phillips in 2008 in a ceremony at St George’s Chapel, Windsor, that caused controversy because the couple sold the photographic rights to Hello! magazine for a reported £500,000.


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