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Earlier this week, the Queen attended Prince Philip’s memorial service at Westminster Abbey alongside around 1,800 others who were invited to pay their respects. It had been suggested that the monarch may not be present on the day, but insiders said she was ‘determined’ to be there and choosing to wear an outfit that holds a very special significance, a nod to her late husband.
Although it reportedly wasn’t decided until the day, the Queen requested that she was escorted into the church by Prince Andrew, and then sat alongside the heir, Prince Charles, and her only daughter, Princess Anne.
Prince William and Kate Middleton arrived with their two eldest children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, and the Duchess of Cambridge was spotted sharing a sweet word with her daughter to comfort her when she appeared nervous.
Unfortunately, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were unable to attend the service. The Duke of Sussex previously spoke about the security issues he faced when returning to the UK, and so the couple remained in the US with their two children, Archie Harrison and Lilibet Diana.
When the Duke of Edinburgh sadly passed away in April 2021, Harry flew back to the UK for the funeral service and was one of the few guests at the service due to the Covid restrictions in place at the time. However, Meghan was unable to join her husband as she was heavily pregnant and had been advised not to travel.
But it seems that the Duchess of Sussex sent the Queen a special gift at the time to let her know that despite her absence, the monarch was in her thoughts.
She sent a colourful wreath with a handwritten note which was laid out inside St George’s Chapel, consisting of purple and blue flowers created by florists, Willow Crossley – the same responsible for the flower arrangements at the Sussexes evening wedding reception in 2018.
According to reports, she specifically asked for the wreath to incorporate acanthus mollis – which is the national flower of Greece and would represent Prince Philip’s heritage – and eryngium to nod to his involvement with the Royal Marines. It also included campanula to signify everlasting love, rosemary for remembrance, lavender for devotion, and roses for Prince Philip’s birth month, June.