Those who tuned in for Prince Philip’s funeral on Saturday may have noticed that the Duke of Edinburgh’s casket wasn’t carried to St. George’s Chapel in a typical hearse.
That’s because the 99-year-old royal, who reportedly didn’t want a fuss made over his funeral, requested his casket be carried in a vehicle more personal to him: a Land Rover modified to his liking.
“Just stick me in the back of a Land Rover and drive me to Windsor,” Prince Philip, Queen Elizabeth II’s husband of more than 70 years, reportedly quipped about his funeral arrangements.
The duke got his wish.
His coffin, adorned with his naval cap, sword, a flag representative of his Greek and Danish heritage, and a spray of flowers chosen by the queen, was carried by eight Grenadier guards dressed in red. The guards hoisted and fastened Prince Philip’s casket onto the back of the customized Land Rover.
The truck drove the decorated casket out of the Windsor Castle quadrangle with a procession of family members following close behind on foot.
Once the Rover made it to St. George’s Chapel, eight uniformed pallbearers unhitched the coffin and carried it up the steps of the church.
According to Buckingham Palace, the duke picked out the Land Rover Defender TD5 130 that would bear his coffin 18 years ago and designed the chassis cab vehicle to his specifications. These included adding an open top rear section to carry his coffin and having the original Belize green color repainted dark bronze green – a color used for military Land Rovers and a nod to the prince’s military background.
The palace noted that Land Rover has maintained the vehicle since it was built in the company’s factory in Solihull, England, in 2003 and collaborated with the royal household to prepare it for the funeral. The vehicle underwent its final changes in 2019.