Prince Philip will ride in the military class before resting in peace on Saturday thanks to a bespoke Land Rover hearse he designed for his own funeral.
Buckingham Palace revealed photos and details of the Duke of Edinburgh’s final voyage ahead of his weekend departure. The hearse will be part of the funeral arrangements that follow Philip’s death at the age of 99 on April 9th.
The vehicle is a simplified Land Rover TD5 130 in a dark bronze green military tone with an open part on the back that holds its coffin.
According to Buckingham Palace, the vehicle was built at the Land Rover plant in Solihull, England, in 2003 and has been modified several times over the years. The final round of changes was made in 2019, although the vehicle was held in readiness for many years until Philip died.
The slimmed-down, military look of the vehicle reflects Philip’s own past as a former naval officer. He served in the British Royal Navy during World War II and took part in the Battles of Cape Matapan and Crete in 1941, six years before he married then Princess Elizabeth.
Land Rover chief executive Thierry Bollore said the company was “deeply privileged” to have worked with the prince, who visited corporate locations over the years and met hundreds of the company’s employees. The company was “honored” that one of its vehicles would be used at the funeral.
Land Rovers have been the vehicle of choice for the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh for decades.
On Saturday, the Land Rover hearse will carry Philip’s coffin in procession into Windsor Castle as members of the Royal Family will follow. He is finally buried in St. George’s Chapel.
“The Duke of Edinburgh was closely involved in planning his own funeral,” the royal family tweeted on Friday. “As a result, there will be a number of unique touches that will reflect his life and work.”
The palace says Philip decided to include the military in many aspects of the funeral to “demonstrate his lifelong commitment to the armed forces”.
Buckingham Palace announced on Friday that the guest list would consist of 30 people. Almost everyone on the list is a member of the royal family.
– –With files from the Associated Press
The royal funeral will take place on Saturday, April 17th at 3:00 p.m. CET (10:00 a.m. CET) at St. George’s Chapel in the grounds of Windsor Castle. You can follow them live in the News Gob app or on GlobalNews.ca.