2 Jan 2012

Prince Philip makes first appearance since operation

6:47 am on 2 January 2012

The Duke of Edinburgh has been applauded by hundreds of spectators as he walked to church in eastern England for a New Year's Day service.

The 90-year-old and husband of the Queen was making his first public appearance after spending four nights in hospital over Christmas.

Prince Philip was accompanied by Prince Edward for the 400-metre walk on the family's Sandringham estate in Norfolk on Sunday, the BBC reports.

The Queen gave a reading during the 45-minute service, which was broadcast to the crowd outside.

Prince Philip left hospital in Cambridgeshire on Tuesday, having had a coronary stent fitted in a blocked artery after suffering chest pains on 23 December.

When he was discharged on 27 December, Buckingham Palace said no decision had been taken on his attendance at the service or how soon he would resume public engagements.

The prince is said to have been advised by doctors to rest. The BBC reports carried out more than 300 engagements in the last year.