The Queen was 'by Prince Philip's bedside' when he died after he spent final days 'in good form reading in the sun'

THE Queen is thought to have been at Prince Philip's bedside when her husband of 73 years passed away at Windsor Castle yesterday.

The Duke of Edinburgh is believed to have spent his final days in "good form" reading and writing letters in the sun" weeks before his 100th birthday.

🔵 Read our live blog for the very latest news on Prince Philip's death




Despite officials at the Palace declined to "go into any specifics" about the Duke's passing, it is understood that his condition worsened overnight on Thursday with insiders warning that he had become "gravely ill".

However, any talk of whisking Prince Philip back to the hospital was reportedly dismissed by the Queen.

One well-placed source told the Telegraph: "He spent most of the four weeks he was in hospital trying to get home.

"They operated on his heart in a bid to give him a little longer, maybe with the 100th birthday in mind.

"But he didn't really care about that.

"He just wanted to be back in his own bed. There is no way he would have wanted to die in hospital."

According to reports, there had been no dramatic decline in Philip's health but it was gradual.

Earlier this week, staff said that the Duke was "on good form", still writing and reading letters.

On warm days over the last few weeks, Philip would reportedly ask to sit in the sunshine with a rug over his legs and nod off.

It comes as..

  • Queen shares poignant photo of Philip as she talks of ‘deep sorrow’
  • Philip will NOT have State Funeral as Brits told to stay away due to Covid
  • Harry wants ‘nothing more’ than to be with the Queen – but will he and Meghan fly back?
  • Boris Johnson pays tribute to ‘extraordinary’ Prince Philip
  • Prince Philip’s life in pictures
  • Queen to enter ‘8 days of mourning’ for Prince Philip
  • How Prince Philip’s early years saw him flee Corfu on a warship
  • This Morning taken off air as Queen announces Philip’s death

Royal sources said that the Prince insisted on looking after himself and refused to wear a hearing aid in the days before his death.

The royal reportedly chastised staff who put a wheelchair in his private rooms and insisted on dressing himself in recent months.

One aide told the Daily Mail he insisted on bending to the floor and picking up his dropped reading glasses, saying "I'll do it" when a footman sprung forward.

And the Queen was said to be overheard saying he wouldn't use his hearing aid, which "means we have to shout", she noted.

Prince Philip was still reportedly dressing himself until recently and heading out of his room in a smart shirt and jumper on good days.

He would use a stick to walk around his rooms, and rarely allowed himself to be pushed in a wheelchair.

A royal source revealed when it was first put in his rooms he shouted: "Get that bl***y thing out of my sight".

In his last few weeks, the prince was well enough to still speak to family and close friends on the telephone but unlike the Queen, the Duke as not a fan of Zoom calls.

It was reported that Philip was "not looking forward to being 100", as he spent his final years quietly at Sandringham.

The royal lived a peaceful life after retiring from public duty in 2017, with sources saying he didn't want a fuss for his milestone birthday.

The Telegraph's Royal reporter Hugo Vicker said: "He hated fuss and attention directed at himself.





"The prospect of turning 100 in June held no appeal for him. He was permitting no national celebration and the pandemic saved him from that.

"Most likely he would've gone to church as he did when he turned 90.

"He was not looking forward to being 100 and all the fuss that could entail.

"While we mind him missing that significant margin of little more than 70 days, it would not have concerned him.

"It is comforting to know that he was able to be with the Queen for the last days of his life, and in a home he loved so well."

At 12:01pm on Friday, Windsor Castle announced the Duke's passing with a statement.

"It is with deep sorrow that Her Majesty The Queen announces the death of her beloved husband, His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

"His Royal Highness passed away peacefully this morning at Windsor Castle. Further announcements will be made in due course.

"The Royal Family join with people around the world in mourning his loss." 

Just after midday yesterday, the Union Flag was lowered to half-mast outside Buckingham Palace and on public buildings across the UK as the world mourns his death.

The Queen, 94, on Friday shared a photo of Philip in a heartfelt tribute to her "strength and guide".

As the consort of the Queen, Prince Philip is entitled to a state funeral.

But in keeping with the duke’s no-fuss public image, it is believed that he had asked not to be given a full state funeral.

Instead, he will be given a military funeral, with a private service held at St George’s Chapel in Windsor and burial in Frogmore Gardens.

The public has been urged to stay away due to the threat of coronavirus.

Philip, who had spent a month being treated for an infection and a pre-existing heart condition, is believed to have died suddenly and unexpectedly.

The Duke was taken to London’s King Edward VII Hospital on February 16 after feeling unwell.

Two weeks later, he was transferred to St Bart’s Hospital for treatment for an infection.

Buckingham Palace then announced on Tuesday, March 16 he had been released from hospital and was in "good spirits" and "comfortable", before confirming on Friday he passed away at home.

Devastated mourners gathered at the gates of Buckingham Palace on Friday afternoon – with the Royal Family setting up an online book of condolence.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson paid tribute and said “he helped to steer the Royal Family and the monarchy so that it remains an institution indisputably vital to the balance and happiness of our national life.”

Speaking from a podium in Downing Street, Mr Johnson said: "He was an environmentalist, and a champion of the natural world long before it was fashionable.

"With his Duke of Edinburgh awards scheme he shaped and inspired the lives of countless young people and at literally tens of thousands of events he fostered their hopes and encouraged their ambitions.

"We remember the duke for all of this and above all for his steadfast support for Her Majesty the Queen.

"Not just as her consort, by her side every day of her reign, but as her husband, her 'strength and stay', of more than 70 years.

"And it is to Her Majesty, and her family, that our nation's thoughts must turn today.

"Because they have lost not just a much-loved and highly respected public figure, but a devoted husband and a proud and loving father, grandfather and, in recent years, great-grandfather."

Philip has been one of the most dedicated royals – since 1952 he attended 22,219 solo engagements and 637 overseas tours in a career marked by his famous gaffes, wit and wisdom.



Source: Read Full Article