Cheers for Prince Philip as he walked to Sandringham church this morning

Hundreds greet the Queen and Duke who joked with crowds waiting at Norfolk church

A cheer echoed round Sandringham this morning when Prince Philip appeared in public for the first time following treatment for a heart problem over Christmas.

On the first day of Diamond Jubilee year, the Duke of Edinburgh showed no ill effects from his stay in Papworth Hospital, Cambridgeshire, where he underwent surgery last week.

He walked the half mile from Sandringham House to the parish church as he usually does for the New Year's Day service and joked with well-wishers about the chilly weather.

Hundreds of people had turned out to see him and the Queen and a cheer went up followed by a round of applause as the Duke strode into view accompanied by Prince Edward and other members of the Royal party. The pair also walked back to the house together after the service.


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The Queen, wearing a vivid blue coat and matching hat trimmed in red, was driven to the church with the Countess of Wessex who also chatted to the waiting crowd.

'He looked very sprightly and well. He even joked with the crowd and it was lovely to see him,' said Leah Bangura, who had travelled from London with her family. Her ten-year-old daughter Rihana was among 40 children who gave flowers to the Queen after the service.

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'It was really nice to see him,' she added.

Royal-watcher Mary Relph, of Shouldham Thorpe, said it had been nice to see the Duke out and about again.

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