The funeral of Britain’s Prince Philip, who died Friday aged 99, may be like no other major royal event in modern history.
The death of Queen Elizabeth II’s husband is expected to mark the start of eight days of national mourning.
But coronavirus lockdown restrictions currently in force in the United Kingdom mean that officials are discouraging crowds from paying their respects.
Philip will not have a state funeral and he will not lie in state, according to the College of Arms, a body that plays a role in royal funerals. State funerals are usually only granted to ruling sovereigns, but the decision also came at Philip’s request, it said.
His body will instead lie at rest in Windsor Castle ahead of the funeral in St George’s Chapel.
“The funeral arrangements have been revised in view of the prevailing circumstances arising from the COVID-19 pandemic,” the College of Arms said in a statement Friday.
“It is regretfully requested that members of the public do not attempt to attend or participate in any of the events that make up the funeral.”
Fuller details on the arrangements will be released in time, it said.
By law, funerals in the United Kingdom must have 30 attendees or fewer — a world away from the pageantry of the Queen Mother’s funeral in 2002, which saw 200,000 mourners line the streets.
Following Philip’s death on Friday, a framed notice was placed on the railings outside Buckingham Palace and all official flags will be flown at half staff until the funeral itself.
The royal website was replaced with a single black page containing Philip’s photo and announcing details of his death.