Canada

Trudeau announces donation to Duke of Edinburgh award as Prince Philip laid to rest

A screen in Piccadilly Circus displays images of Britain's Prince Philip, husband of Queen Elizabeth, who died at the age of 99, in London, Britain, April 17, 2021.

Canada will donate $200,000 to the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award as a tribute to the late Prince Philip’s “remarkable life and his selfless service,” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Saturday.

The announcement came as the scaled back official funeral for the Queen’s long-time husband took place at Windsor Castle amid public health restrictions meant to protect against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Queen sat alone in the quire of St. George’s Chapel as she mourned Prince Philip, the man who had been by her side for 73 years and the longest serving royal consort in British history.

Philip was a “devoted public servant whose contributions changed countless lives around the world, especially those of young people,” Trudeau said in a statement.

The donation to the Canadian branch of the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award honours his commitment to the success of future generations, he added.

“I encourage young Canadians to find out more about the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award,” Trudeau said. “Whether you want to develop a new skill, give back to your community, or set out on an adventure, this program is as much a personal challenge as it is a global opportunity.”

The funeral at St. George’s Chapel paid tribute to both Philip’s service in the British Royal Navy and his unwavering support for his wife the Queen.

The pared down ceremony was limited to 30 mourner’s inside the chapel, including the widowed monarch, her four children and her eight grandchildren. Everyone wore face masks and maintained physical distance or sat in family bubbles.

The nave of St. George’s Chapel was occupied with just four singers and a handful of musicians.

Royal Marine Buglers sounded the Royal Navy’s battle alert in honour of Prince Philip’s military service as his coffin was lowered into the Royal Vault at St. George’s Chapel inside Windsor Castle.

The Duke of Edinburgh served in the Royal Navy for more than 12 years and maintained close ties to the armed forces throughout his life. Service personnel had a significant role in honouring him Saturday despite the attendance limit.

Hundreds of people — some clutching flowers or holding Union flags — lined the streets outside Windsor Castle to pay their respects, though road signs in the area warned against all non-essential travel.

Many Canadians are expected to join royal watchers around the world in saying their final goodbyes, albeit virtually.

Due to pandemic protocols, Canadians intending to pay their last respects will be limited to gathering in only small groups to watch the proceedings either on television or online.

Canada will hold a national commemorative ceremony in honour of the Duke of Edinburgh at Christ Church Cathedral at 12:30 p.m. in Ottawa.

In accordance with pandemic-related restrictions, no guests will be invited to attend the church service, and Canadians are asked to watch the broadcast and not congregate outside.

The ceremony, which will include virtual tributes and performances, will be followed by a recital by the Dominion Carillonneur at the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill.

A gun salute will also be conducted as part of the national commemorative ceremony.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 17, 2021.

— With files from The Associated Press

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