William says walking behind Queen’s coffin reminded him of Diana’s funeral

William says walking behind Queen's coffin reminded him of Diana's funeral

The procession evoked memories of the brothers walking behind their mother’s coffin (Image: Getty)

Prince William described how walking behind the Queen’s coffin “brought back some memories” of his mother’s funeral.

The new Prince of Wales and heir to the throne marched side by side with Prince Harry during Wednesday’s sensational procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall.

It reflects the poignant scenes 25 years ago when the siblings walked with their father behind Princess Diana’s coffin during her funeral in 1997.

Speaking to mourners outside Sandringham on Thursday, William, 40, said the walk was ‘challenging’, adding: ‘It brought back some memories.

“It’s one of those moments where you think to yourself, ‘I’ve prepared for this,’ but I’m not that prepared.

“It’s this weird thing, because we knew it was 96.”

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Funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales - LR Earl Spencer Prince Charles Prince William Harry and Prince Charles stand next to the hearse containing Diana's coffin after the funeral at Westminster Abbey.  (Photo by Jeff Overs/BBC News & Current Affairs via Getty Images)

Earl Spencer, Prince William, Prince Harry and then Prince Charles stand next to the hearse containing Princess Diana’s coffin (Image: BBC News & Current Affairs via Getty Images)

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - SEPTEMBER 6: Prince Charles, Prince Harry, Earl Spencer, Prince William and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh follow the coffin of Diana Princess of Wales to Westminster Abbey for her funeral on September 6, 1997. Diana was killed in a car accident in Paris on August 31.  (Photo by Dave M. Bennett/Getty Images)

Following the coffin to Westminster Abbey for her funeral (Image: Getty)

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 14: Prince William, Prince of Wales, King Charles III, Prince Richard, Duke of Gloucester, Anne, Princess Royal and Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex walk behind the coffin during the procession for the lying in state of Queen Elizabeth II on September 14, 2022 in London, England.  Queen Elizabeth II's coffin is carried in procession in a carriage by The King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall, where it will lie in state until the early hours of her funeral.  Queen Elizabeth II died at Balmoral Castle in Scotland on September 8, 2022 and was succeeded by her eldest son, King Charles III.  (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

Siblings walk behind the coffin during the procession for Queen Elizabeth II in lieu of state (Image: Getty)

Britain's William, Prince of Wales and Prince Harry march during a procession where the coffin of Britain's Queen Elizabeth is carried from Buckingham Palace to the Houses of Parliament to lie in state, in London, Britain, 14 September 2022. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

William told mourners it “brought back some memories” (Image: Reuters)

He and his wife Kate, also 40, who now holds the old title of Diana, Princess of Wales, got out of a dark Range Rover near Norwich Gates and took time to read messages for the many tributes.

Thousands of well-wishers gathered behind metal barriers to catch a glimpse of the couple, who stayed for nearly an hour speaking to the crowd.

William told retired dry cleaner Peggy Butcher: “This sea of ​​flowers is incredible.”

He also thanked everyone who went to the Norfolk estate on Thursday.

Mrs Butcher, 89, also in Cambridgeshire since March, said afterwards: “She seemed to care about us because we cared about the Queen.”

Receptionist Jane Wells, 54, from Long Sutton in Lincolnshire, said: “I said how proud his mother would be of him, and he said how difficult it was yesterday because it brought back memories of his mother’s funeral.”

Caroline Barwick-Walters, 66, from Neath in Wales, said: “He told us how difficult it was yesterday, how it brought back memories of walking behind his mother’s coffin.”

She said she told William “thank you for sharing your grief with the nation” and that he replied “she was everyone’s grandmother”.

The Queen is currently lying in state at Westminster Hall until her funeral on Monday.

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