Mourners defied public health advice to stay at home and continued to lay flowers for Prince Philip at royal palaces through the night and from dawn today as Britain marks his death at the age of 99.
The bouquets, flowers, cards, Union Flags and balloons are being moved away by staff almost as soon as they are left – but royal aides insist they will all be saved and looked at by the Royal Family inside the grounds of Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace.
The Duke of Edinburgh‘s coffin is at Windsor, where the Queen is in residence, in Her Majesty’s private chapel of worship, before being moved to the nearby Albert Memorial Chapel today, where he will rest over the weekend. Her Majesty is understood to have been at his bedside when he slipped away yesterday morning.
Outside the castle the flowers, balloons and personal letters in his memory continue to arrive while mourners, some in tears or singing hymns, also paid their respects at the gates of Buckingham Palace.
But royal officials stationed outside have urged mourners not to come with flowers, with the floral tributes being moved inside the castle grounds, where the Royal Family can admire them. Workers did the same in central London through the night to clear the huge piles of tributes.
However, despite the warnings, those who wish to remember 99-year-old Philip at the palaces where he lived, still come today.
And as tributes to the Queen’s husband poured in from around the globe, gun salutes marking the death of the Duke of Edinburgh are to take place across the UK, in Gibraltar and at sea at Midday. There will also be cannons firing across the Commonwealth, including Australia.
Mourners came to Buckingham Palace through the night and as dawn broke to lay flowers for Prince Philip, who died yesterday aged 99
A mourner in a beret and mask arrived after 7am to pay her respects despite advice not to travel due to Covid restrictions
A woman gestures as she sings next to tributes left in honor of Britain’s Prince Philip in front of Buckingham Palace
A worker clears away the tributes, which are being taken inside the royal palaces where Philip’s family and aides will look at them
The flag at half mast at Buckingham Palace at dawn today, as Britain continues a period of eight days of mourning
Tributes continued to be placed into the evening, as piles of flowers were left on the ground outside Windsor Castle
A candle is seen among flowers outside Windsor Castle. Bouquets were left in tribute to Prince Philip
Death Gun Salute will be fired at noon today to pay tribute to Prince Philip after Westminster Abbey tolls its bell 99 times in 99 minutes
A Death Gun Salute will be fired at noon today to pay tribute to Prince Philip after Westminster Abbey tolled its bell 99 times in 99 minutes (file image)
A Death Gun Salute will be fired at noon today to pay tribute to Prince Philip after Westminster Abbey tolled its bell 99 times in 99 minutes.
Saluting batteries will fire 41 rounds at one round every minute for 40 minutes at Cardiff Castle, Edinburgh Castle and Hillsborough Castle in Belfast and in Gibraltar, the Ministry of Defence said.
They will be fired at two locations in London – Woolwich Barracks and HM Tower of London.
There will also be gun salutes at HM Naval Base Devonport and HM Naval Base Portsmouth, and on ships at sea including HMS Diamond and HMS Montrose.
The gun salutes will take place behind closed doors, but broadcast online and on television, and the public are encouraged to observe them from home, the MoD said.
It comes after Westminster Abbey tolled its tenor bell every 60 seconds, 99 times, at 6pm following the announcement of Prince Philip’s death yesterday.
Saluting batteries will fire 41 rounds at one round every minute in cities including London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast, as well as Gibraltar and from Royal Navy warships, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said.
Gun salutes have been fired to mark significant national events since as early as at least the 18th century.
They were used to mark the deaths of Queen Victoria in 1901 and Winston Churchill in 1965. The public is being encouraged to observe the gun salutes, which will be broadcast online and on television, from home.
Crowds of mourners left flowers in tribute to Prince Philip outside royal residences last night despite pleas by officials to stay away because of covid restrictions.
Thousands of members of the public arrived at Windsor Castle – where the Duke of Edinburgh passed away – over the course of the afternoon.
Hundreds stood in quiet reflection to look at floral tributes lined up outside the gates of Buckingham Palace.
At Sandringham, where the Duke spent much of his time after retiring from public life in 2017 until the onset of the pandemic, flowers, cards and poems were also left outside the main entrance to Sandringham House.
Mourners were seen in tears outside both the Palace and the castle – where bouquets began piling up in early afternoon despite the Cabinet Office and Royal Household requests not to lay flowers in view of the pandemic restrictions on non-essential travel and large gatherings.
With England gradually easing itself out of a national lockdown amid the Covid-19 crisis, officials are desperate to avoid crowds from forming on the scale of those seen when Diana, Princess of Wales died in 1997. Then, tens of thousands of bouquets were left at both Buckingham Palace and her former home, Kensington Palace.
A royal official stationed outside Windsor Castle urged mourners not to come with flowers, but said the floral tributes which had already been left would be moved inside the castle grounds, where the Royal Family could look at them.
Thousands of tributes were posted online with heartfelt words for Her Majesty – who was described by one well-wisher as having ‘lost the brightest jewel in her crown’.
Flags were flown at half-mast across the country while thousands flocked to Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle to leave flowers and mourn.
But Palace officials and No10 encouraged the public not to congregate in large groups amid coronavirus restrictions, as mounted police asked people to obey socially distancing measures.
Gun salutes marking the death of the Duke of Edinburgh are to take place across the UK, in Gibraltar and at sea.
Saluting batteries will fire 41 rounds at one round every minute from midday in cities including London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast, as well as Gibraltar and from Royal Navy warships, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said.
Gun salutes have been fired to mark significant national events since as early as at least the 18th century.
They were used to mark the deaths of Queen Victoria in 1901 and Winston Churchill in 1965.
The public is being encouraged to observe the gun salutes, which will be broadcast online and on television, from home.
First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Sir Tony Radakin, the most senior officer in the Royal Navy, added to the tributes to Philip.
In a statement released on Saturday morning, he said: ‘His genuine empathy, affection and engagement with the Royal Navy resonated with us all.
‘His generous spirit, his delight in all aspects of the Naval Service, and his deep understanding of our values, standards and ethos made him such a close friend to the Service for over eight decades.’
In London, the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery will ride out from their base at Napier Lines, Woolwich Barracks, onto the Parade Ground.
There will be 71 horses, 36 of them pulling six 13-pounder field guns dating from the First World War.
The same guns were also fired for Philip’s wedding to the Queen in 1947 and at her Coronation six years later in 1953.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: ‘His Royal Highness Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh was a constant supporter and ambassador of the armed forces.
‘We celebrate his life of service and offer our condolences to Her Majesty the Queen and the royal family.’
Chief of the Defence Staff, General Sir Nick Carter said: ‘His Royal Highness has been a great friend, inspiration and role model for the armed forces and he will be sorely missed.
‘The Duke of Edinburgh served among us during the Second World War, and he remained devoted to the Royal Navy and the armed forces as a whole.
‘A life well lived, His Royal Highness leaves us with a legacy of indomitable spirit, steadfastness and an unshakeable sense of duty. From all of us who serve today and who have served, thank you.’
A view of Windsor Castle, as people gathered to bring flowers after Britain’s Prince Philip passed away
The tributes left by flocks of mourners were lit up by candlelight outside Windsor Castle
A man takes a photograph of a balloon and floral tributes left outside Buckingham Palace, London
Floral tributes and candles are left outside Buckingham Palace following the announcement of the death of the Duke of Edinburgh
Floral tributes are left outside Buckingham Palace, following the announcement of the death of the Duke of Edinburgh at the age of 99
A young child holds a floral tribute as well-wishers take photographs at the gates of Buckingham Palace
People react as they gather outside Buckingham Palace in central London on April 9 after the death of Prince Philip
Flowers were scattered on the ground outside Windsor Castle today in tribute to Prince Philip
Mourners look on as flowers are left at the gates of Windsor Castle at the top of the long walk
The sun sets behind the flag which is at half mast at Buckingham Palace. Mourners rushed to lay flowers in tribute
Blackpool Tower has been illuminated in red, white and blue in tribute to Prince Philip, who died today
Flowers at Cambridge Gate at Windsor Castle, Berkshire. It was today announced that Prince Philip had died aged 99
Flowers at Cambridge Gate at Windsor Castle, Berkshire. A police officer laid the bouquets offered by mourners
A young boy laid flowers at Cambridge Gate at Windsor Castle, Berkshire, following the announcement of the death of the Duke of Edinburgh
Mourners stand outside Buckingham Palace in central London today following the death of the Duke on Friday morning
A boy leaves flowers next to a Union flag in front of the gate at Buckingham Palace in London, after the announcement of the death of Prince Philip
A mourner cries outside Buckingham Palace after the heartbreaking announced on Friday afternoon
A woman wearing a Union flag face covering wipes away tears as she sits outside Windsor Castle on The Long Walk in Berkshire
A mourner shed a tear outside Buckingham Palace after it was announced that Prince Philip had passed away
Windsor Castle saw children praying for the late Duke of Edinburgh today as crowds started to gather outside
A lifelong supporter of the Royal Family comes to lay some flowers in memory of Prince Philip as members of the press stand around him
People gather outside Buckingham Palace, London, following the announcement of the death of the Duke of Edinburgh at the age of 99
People gather outside Windsor Castle in Berkshire after the announcement regarding the death of Prince Philip on Friday
A young boy lays flowers in front of the gate of Buckingham Palace in London after the heartbreaking announcement today
Windsor Castle is pictured as crowds start to gather outside following the announcement that HRH Prince Philip has died today
A Union Flag lies next to flowers outside Buckingham Palace in central London today as crowds gather to pay tribute to the late Prince
A woman arrives to lay a bunch of flowers outside Buckingham Palace in central London on Friday afternoon after the announcement of the death of Prince Philip
A woman lays a bunch of flowers at the gates of Buckingham Palace in central London on Friday afternoon after the announcement of the death of Philip
A police officer stands next to bouquets of flowers outside Buckingham Palace after the announcement on Friday at lunchtime
The scene outside Windsor Castle in Berkshire as the announcement of the death of The Duke of Edinburgh becomes public
People prepare to leave flowers in front of the gate of Buckingham Palace in London, on Friday. Buckingham Palace officials say Prince Philip died this morning
Two men are pictured preparing to leave flowers in front of the gate of Buckingham Palace in central London on Friday afternoon
Two women are pictured preparing to leave flowers in front of the gate of Buckingham Palace in central London this afternoon
People are pictured gathering outside Buckingham Palace in central London on Friday afternoon after the announcement of his death
Flags were lowered across the country today as a sign of respect to the Duke, with Buckingham Palace (pictured) and Downing Street leading the way
The Union Flag flies at half-mast from Victoria Tower over the Houses of Parliament in central London
The Union flag flies half mast at The Tower of London on April 09 following the death of Prince Philip
The flag also flew half mast over Edinburgh Castle after the announcement of the death of the Duke of Edinburgh
The flag flew half mast at Buckingham Palace after Prince Philip died. Visitors laid floral tributes
Flags are lowered to half mast following Prince Philip’s death. The silhouette of the Houses of Parliament can be seen
Union Flags fly at half-mast on top of Downing Street after it was announced Prince Philip died on Friday morning aged 99
Flags at half mast at Balmoral (left) Holyrood Palace (right) in Scotland where they changed to a larger Lion Rampant on the announcement of the death of Prince Philip
A flag flies at half mast over the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh after the announcement of the death of the Duke
The Union Flag flies at half-mast over the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office in central London
The Union Flag flies at half mast to mark the death of the Duke Of Edinburgh at Edinburgh Castle in Scotland on Friday
A flag flies at half mast behind the stands in honour of the late Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, ahead of Ladies Day of the 2021 Randox Health Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse
The Duchy of Cornwall flag flies at half mast at their headquarters in Poundbury on Friday afternoon as the nation mourned
An official notice announcing the death of Britain’s Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh is placed on the gates of Buckingham Palace in central London
Britons expressed their sorrow at the loss of the Duke of Edinburgh and passed on their good wishes to the Queen and the rest of the Royal Family
Many brought bunches of daffodils, tulips, lilies and roses to pay tribute to Prince Philip.
Some left cards with poignant messages and poems.
Others simply wanted to reflect on the royal’s life and achievements, their heads bowed in thought.
Mourners were seen in tears outside both Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, where bouquets began piling up from early afternoon.
There were similar scenes at Balmoral and Sandringham in Norfolk.
A royal official stationed outside Windsor Castle said the floral tributes which had already been left would be moved inside the grounds where the Royal Family could look at them.
In view of current pandemic restrictions on large gatherings, officials are desperate to prevent crowds from forming on the scale of those seen when Princess Diana died in 1997.
Then, tens of thousands of bouquets were left at both Buckingham Palace and her former home, Kensington Palace.
An emotional Sheila Reddicliffe, 78, from Windsor, laid flowers at the castle gates, saying: ‘I’m so upset. It’s very sad he didn’t reach 100. He had such a wonderful life. He’s been an absolute rock for this country.’
Some children left handmade cards with drawings and messages.
One, from seven-year-old Haarys, read: ‘Dear Queen Elizabeth I’m sorry about your husband.’
Tayla Lawrence, Aroosa Hussain and Alayna Ismail, all 20, went on a three-day hike as part of the Duke of Edinburgh’s bronze award they completed while at Windsor Girls’ School together.
Miss Lawrence said the scheme was ‘inspiring’ and helped her gain ‘map and directions skills’ she otherwise wouldn’t have learnt.
The University of Surrey student said the duke’s legacy
‘will live on through the award and all the students that do it’.
British Airways employee Jan McMackin, 57, said: ‘We came here when we heard the sad news. We felt that they are quintessentially what Britain is all about, it is about duty and honour, we really wanted to come and pay our respects to both the Queen and Prince Philip.’
Outside Buckingham Palace, crowds gazed on the floral tributes lined up against the low wall.
Maximilien Roesner, 24, who laid a bouquet of red roses by the front gates, said: ‘I’m absolutely saddened. He lived a life dedicated to service to the United Kingdom, and I think he is one of the strongest men and a truly inspirational person.’
At Sandringham, well-wishers left flowers at the foot of the wrought-iron Norwich Gates.
Youngster Skyla Bates, who was accompanied by her grandmother Marlene Overson, 48, from nearby West Lynn, said: ‘I wanted to put flowers down for the Queen because she might be crying.’
Julie Hallifax, of Clenchwarton, Norfolk, who took her four children aged four to 11, to lay flowers, said of the duke: ‘He was just a lovely guy. I just remember him as a good old character who made everyone laugh.’
Flowers too were left outside the gates of Balmoral Castle.
One bunch was wrapped in brown paper with the words: ‘May you rest in peace Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh. Thank you for your legacy.’
The sporting world also paid tribute with a two-minute silence at Aintree racecourse. Premier League footballers will wear black armbands this weekend.
A woman called Charlotte captured the mood when she posted on Twitter: ‘What a life you led. I don’t think the Queen could have done it without you. You were the brightest jewel in her crown.’
Corra Linn wrote: ‘To give you an idea of my emotional state right now, I spent the morning crying to Fearless and it looks like I’ll be spending my afternoon crying about Prince Philip.’
A woman called Elizabeth posted: ‘Am not embarrassed to say I’m crying, and have poured a glass of Fizz to toast his amazing life of service Rest in Peace, Prince Philip.’
Andy Oddy put: ‘Politics aside you have to feel for the Queen as a human being. I recall when my own grandfather died aged 94 – it devastated my Gran after 72 years together.’
A man called Henry added: ‘Love is forever Red heart. No matter what your views are on the #RoyalFamily at this time Queen Elizabeth has just lost her soul mate of 73 years.
‘I can’t begin to imagine how devastated she must be feeling inside right now. Broken heart. Rest in eternal peace #PrincePhilip.’
A former butler to Princes Charles tweeted: ‘I am saddened to learn of the death of HRH Prince Philip The Duke of Edinburgh. A gentleman who I was proud to have served during my time in the Royal Household. I send my condolences to the Royal Family.’
Royal biographer Ingrid Stewart posted: ‘A very sad day indeed. Sending condolences to Her Majesty The Queen on the passing of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. He has been a constant strength and guide during her reign.’
Kate Jamieson put: ‘So, very sad to hear that Prince Philip has died. A man dedicated to Queen and Country in more ways than one. Fair winds and following seas.’