Tuesday, 23 Apr 2024

Queen’s heartbreak laid bare after she failed to get to Prince Philip

Prince Philip funeral: Expert discusses 'small family gathering'

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Prince Philip died before the Queen could get to him, a friend of the Royal Family has claimed in a new book about Her Majesty. The Duke of Edinburgh died in 2021, just months short of his 100th birthday, at Windsor Castle, where he and Queen Elizabeth had been living since the start of the Covid lockdown.

In an excerpt from his forthcoming book, Elizabeth: An Intimate Portrait, shared on Mail Online, Brandreth says the Duke of Edinburgh had been in a hospital bed in his dressing room at Windsor.

He added: That morning, he went to the bathroom, helped by a nurse.

“When he came back, he said he felt a little faint and wanted help getting back into bed.

“The nurse called the Duke’s valet and the Queen’s page, Paul Whybrew, for help – and he died before the Queen could be called.”

Brandreth says the Queen was not called until after the Duke had been pronounced dead by a doctor.

The Duke was laid out when King Charles III – at that point still the Prince of Wales – arrived but he left without seeing his father, although Prince Edward did, and other family members began to arrive.

Brandreth adds: “As they tried to comfort the Queen, the Queen was comforting them.”

The Queen returned to her apartment at the castle immediately after Philip’s funeral on April 17, Brandreth writes.

He quotes her dresser, Angela Kelly, as saying: “I helped her off with her coat and hat and no words were spoken.

“The Queen then walked to her sitting room, closed the door behind her, and she was alone with her thoughts.”

Brandreth also paints a vivid picture of the late Queen’s stoicism after her bereavement, suggesting while she grieved in private, she carried on as normal in public.

He adds: “‘Life goes on,’ she said. ‘It has to.’

(More to follow)

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