PLANS FOR THE QUEEN’S FUNERAL
As a new era dawns in Britain, plans for Queen Elizabeth’s funeral are underway. Here’s what to expect in the coming days.
(CNN) — As a new era dawns in Britain, arrangements for a final farewell to Queen Elizabeth II are underway.
After a record-breaking reign, the monarch died at her Balmoral residence in Scotland on Thursday. Her son, King Charles III, has asked for a period of Royal Mourning to be observed from Friday, Sept. 9, until seven days after the Queen’s funeral, according to a Buckingham Palace statement.
The date of the funeral will be confirmed “in due course,” the statement added. Here’s what you can expect to happen in the coming days.
Queen Elizabeth’s Service of Prayer and Reflection
How will the Queen’s coffin return to London?
Preparations are currently being made for her remains to be transported back to London. The coffin will first leave Balmoral, the Queen’s Scottish rural retreat, for the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh. The property is the official residence of the British monarch in Scotland.
It will then likely travel in procession to Edinburgh’s St Giles Cathedral where the Queen will lie in rest before being moved down to London. We don’t yet know exactly how the coffin will travel south; routes are available by both rail and air.
How can the public pay their respects?
Historical precedent suggests that once in London, the Queen will likely lie in state at Westminster Hall, the oldest part of the Palace of Westminster.
Past monarchs’ coffins have rested on a raised platform — or catafalque — in the middle of the hall, guarded around the clock by units from the Sovereign’s Bodyguard, Foot Guards or the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment.
Brass plaques in the 11th-century hall mark the spot where Edward VII lay in state in 1910, George V in 1936, George VI in 1952 and Queen Mary a year later. The hall, which is more than 1,000 years old, is also where wartime Prime Minister Winston Churchill lay in state in 1965.
The Queen Mother was the most recent member of the royal family to lie in state in the hall (and only the second royal consort to be granted the honor) in 2002. On that occasion, her grandsons — Prince Charles, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Viscount Linley — took part in the guard, in what is unofficially called “The Vigil of the Princes.”
King George V’s sons also stood guard at his lying in state. The palace has yet to confirm who might participate in the guard for the Queen.
The coffin is likely to remain there for several days and it’s at this point that members of the public will be able to file past the platform and view the monarch’s coffin. Thousands are expected to queue, with some potentially sleeping out overnight in a bid to pay their respects.
King Charles III delivers his first address as the new British monarch from London’s Buckingham Palace on Friday, September 9. He vowed to continue in his mother’s footsteps and serve “with loyalty, respect and love.”
People watch Charles’ televised speech inside a pub in London on Friday. “As the Queen herself did with such unswerving devotion, I too now solemnly pledge myself, throughout the remaining time God grants me, to uphold the Constitutional principles at the heart of our nation,” he said.
Prime Minister Liz Truss delivers a statement outside No. 10 Downing Street on Thursday. “She has been a personal inspiration to me and to many Britons,” Truss said. “Her devotion to duty is an example to us all.”
Photos: The UK mourns Queen Elizabeth II
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