“The duke was keen to attend but made this decision because he was experiencing some trouble with his hip,” a royal source told Reuters on Thursday.
“The order of service was printed some weeks ago, when it was hoped the Duke would be able to take part,” Buckingham Palace added in a statement, but he “has since decided not to attend.”
The Duke of Edinburgh missed Prince Andrew’s appointment as the new Colonel of the Granadier Guards on March 22, but the Palace declined to comment on the matter at the time. In 2011, he spent Christmas in the hospital after being treated for a blocked coronary artery.
Harry has a special relationship with his grandfather, according to royal expert Kate Nicholl.
“One of the reasons that Prince Harry wanted this wedding to happen quite quickly — this is really whirlwind by royal standards – is because of his 96-year-old grandfather, the Duke of Edinburgh, is retired now and Prince Harry really wants him to be at the wedding,” Nicholl told Entertainment Tonight in November. “He’s incredibly close to his grandfather and being 96, Harry thought it was a great thing to have the wedding soon er than later, so his grandfather could be there, fit and healthy.”
The 33-year-old and his Markle, 36, announced their engagement on November 27. They will exchange wedding vows on May 19 in a televised ceremony.
Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth have been married for 70 years. He attended his last official royal engagement on August 2.
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