Prince Philip: BBC coverage breaks UK TV complaints record
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Prince Philip died on Friday at Windsor Castle at the age of 99. On Saturday, April 17, a ceremonial royal funeral will be taking place at St George’s Chapel, Windsor. The funeral has been planned in line with the late Duke’s “own personal wishes”, the Royal Family said. During the service, the Duke’s coffin will be transferred to St George’s Chapel via a modified Land Rover, which the Duke helped to design himself.
Boris Johnson told MPs on Monday it was fitting that Philip would be taken to his final resting place on a Land Rover.
The Prime Minister said: “That vehicle’s unique and idiosyncratic silhouette reminds the world that he was above all a practical man, who could take something very traditional whether a machine or indeed a great national institution and find a way by his own ingenuity to improve it, to adapt it for the 20th or the 21st Century.”
Only 30 mourners will be permitted to attend Prince Philip’s funeral under the lockdown rules and the public have also been asked not to attend any of the planned events on Saturday.
Rather than leave flowers at royal residences, the Royal Family have asked people to consider donating to charity instead or signing an online book of condolences which has been set up in the Duke’s memory.
People who wish to watch the funeral on TV can do so via BBC One on Saturday, April 17.
The Funeral of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh will air at 12.30pm to 4.20pm.
The funeral will also be broadcast from 2pm to 4.10pm on Radio 4 and Radio 5 Live, BBC World Service English, BBC Radio Scotland and BBC Radio Ulster and will also be broadcast on BBC Radio Wales and BBC local radio with some variation in start times.
Some ceremonial aspects of the event will start at 2pm on Saturday.
The funeral will not take place until 3pm, with the procession to St George’s Chapel beginning at 2.40pm.
However the BBC will show coverage from 12.30pm on Saturday, showing the lead up to the send off.
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The funeral is expected to last 50 minutes and will be conducted by the Dean of Windsor.
The BBC will then show the funeral again from 8.10pm to 9.10pm.
The schedule comes after the BBC confirmed it received 109,741 complaints from the public over its coverage of the Duke of Edinburgh’s death on April 9.
The corporation cleared its schedules to cover the news, leading to outrage from many over its wall to wall coverage of the loss.
The BBC said it was “a significant event which generated a lot of interest both nationally and internationally”.
A statement added: “We acknowledge some viewers were unhappy with the level of coverage given, and impact this had on the billed TV and Radio schedules.
“We do not make such changes without careful consideration and the decisions made reflect the role the BBC plays as the national broadcaster, during moments of national significance.
“We are grateful for all feedback, and we always listen to the response from our audiences.”
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