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Duke joins royals at church service

The Duke of Edinburgh appeared in good health as he joined the rest of the Royal Family for the New Year's Day service at Sandringham.

While the Queen arrived in a Bentley, the Duke chose to make the 400-metre trip from Sandringham House to the estate's church on foot.

Wearing a camel coat, he walked briskly and appeared relaxed as he exchanged greetings with onlookers.

There had been doubts about whether the Duke would attend following the health scare which forced him to miss his first Christmas at Sandringham since the early 1990s.

He was admitted to Papworth Hospital, Cambridgeshire, on December 23 where doctors discovered a blocked artery.

The 90-year-old underwent a "minimally invasive procedure" of coronary stenting which was declared a success. He was discharged on Tuesday.

About 500 members of the public watched as the Queen arrived at the 45-minute service. The Earl and Countess of Wessex also attended.

During the service the Queen read part of the nativity story from the New Testament while prayers were said for servicemen in Afghanistan.

Afterwards the Duke walked ahead of the rest of the royal party and returned to the house alone.

The Queen, wearing a vivid blue coat and hat with red detail, collected flowers from about 40 children and was helped into the waiting car by the Countess of Wessex.


From Belfast Telegraph