The Queen told the Archbishop of York about her struggle to say goodbye to Prince Philip

The Queen’s pain as she mourns beloved Prince Philip in public: Her Majesty told the Archbishop of York of her struggle to say goodbye to her husband

  • Dr John Sentamu said the Queen finds it difficult to mourn Prince Philip in public
  • He said his thoughts are with the Royal Family who must “mourn publicly”
  • Former Archbishop of York helped plan Queen Elizabeth’s funeral
  • These people will be “warmed up” by the service, which will not be “long and boring”
  • Queen’s funeral: All the latest news and coverage from the royal family

Queen Elizabeth said it “was not easy” to mourn her beloved husband Prince Philip so publicly, the former Archbishop of York has revealed.

In a ‘wonderful’ letter written just four weeks after the Duke of Edinburgh’s death last year, the Queen thanked Dr John Sentamu for his flowers and prayers.

But he told the BBC she ended the letter by saying: ‘When you mourn someone you love deeply, it’s not easy when you have to do it in public.

Appearing on Sunday With Laura Kuenssberg, Dr Sentamu added that his thoughts are now with the King and the Royal Family who need to ‘mourn publicly’ and ‘find a space to do so’.

Members of the Royal Family have represented the family across the country over the past fortnight with vigils, processions and walks to mark the Queen’s death. It comes just 18 months after Prince Philip’s funeral when the Queen was pictured sitting alone in Windsor to abide by coronavirus restrictions.

Queen Elizabeth said he

Queen Elizabeth said it ‘was not easy’ to mourn her beloved husband Prince Philip so publicly, former Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu (pictured in 2012) has revealed

The Queen, who has been married to the Duke for 73 years, has approved an eight-day period of national mourning followed by a period of private mourning as family members return to their duties.

She described Prince Philip as her “strength and endurance” nearly six decades after they met when she was just 13.

Dr Sentamu, who was closely involved in organizing the Queen’s funeral, also said people would be ‘warmed up’ by the state service today.

The archbishop, who held the position from 2005 to 2020, said he had been involved in planning the service for the past 17 years. He added: “The Queen does not – and did not want – what you call long and boring services. You won’t find boredom but you will be lifted to glory by listening to the service.’

Members of the Royal Family have represented the family across the country over the past fortnight with vigils, processions and walks to mark the Queen's death.  It comes just 18 months after Prince Philip's funeral when the Queen was pictured sitting alone in Windsor to abide by coronavirus restrictions

Members of the Royal Family have represented the family across the country over the past fortnight with vigils, processions and walks to mark the Queen’s death. It comes just 18 months after Prince Philip’s funeral when the Queen was pictured sitting alone in Windsor to abide by coronavirus restrictions

Although he said the funeral would remain traditional, he added: “What you’re going to expect is the best of funeral services.”

Sharing details of the service – including the use of funeral prayer books from 1662 – he continued: “You are going to hear that wonderful English at its best. You will also hear the angelic voices of the choir of [Westminster Abbey]. Voices that sing to the glory of God.

“People’s hearts and shells will be warmed, but at the same time there will be a moment to call it a funeral service.”

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