Queen funeral – latest: Public pay last respects at Westminster Hall lying-in-state


Andy Gregory,Arpan Rai,Matt Mathers and Jane Dalton

Wed, 14 September 2022 at 6:31 pm·47-min read

Members of the public have been filing past the late Queen’s coffin to pay their respects as her lying-in-state began at Westminster Hall.

King Charles III and the rest of the former monarch’s family marched in homage behind her coffin as it was conveyed from Buckingham Palace in a procession of pomp and pageantry.

A gun carriage that had borne the coffins of her mother and father carried the Queen through the heart of the capital, watched by tens of thousands who lined the route and fell silent as the cortege passed.

Princes William and Harry joined their father, Princess Anne and Princes Andrew and Edward walking behind the gun carriage, which was draped with a royal standard adorned with the imperial state crown.

A brief service for the reception of the coffin was held, with the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, giving the opening prayer.

The new Prince and Princess of Wales and Duke and Duchess of Sussex were briefly reunited for the ceremony.

People have been warned they may have to queue for up to three days to get into the hall, and are having security checks before being allowed in.

Key Points

  • Queen’s lying-in-state begins
  • Harry and William join King Charles in procession behind Queen’s coffin
  • US president sends King his condolences
  • Mourners are warned of 35-hour wait to pay respects
  • Her Majesty spends final night at Buckingham Palace

Thousands tune into live stream

18:55 , Jane Dalton

The number of viewers tuned into the live stream of the Queen lying in state topped 20,000 on a number of occasions within its first hour online.

The service began broadcasting globally via the BBC News website at 5pm, when the doors of Westminster Hall opened to the public.

Mourners could be seen tearful as they filed solemnly past the coffin and paid their respects. Some bowed or curtseyed.

The number of people viewing the dedicated stream quickly rose to about 20,000 and remained there for much of the first hour of broadcast.

The service is also available in the UK on the iPlayer, BBC Parliament and the red button.

Up to 400,000 people are expected to brave a 12-hour wait on the banks of the Thames to pay their respects.

The government has issued guidance about what can be carried into the hall, bathroom facilities for those in the queue and the risk of having to wait through the night.

This photo from Maryam Zakir-Hussain shows the queue snaking around the Oxo tower.

 (Maryam Zakir-Hussain)
(Maryam Zakir-Hussain)

Full list of bank holiday closures from supermarkets to pubs

18:25 , Jane Dalton

The day of the Queen’s funeral has been approved as a bank holiday by King Charles III, meaning many schools, supermarkets and other organisations will be closing their doors on Monday.

Once-in-a-lifetime chance, says student

18:03 , Jane Dalton

Tunlatorn Chaiyatep, 23, from Thailand and studying in London said he queued to see how the Thai and British monarchies differ in their ceremonies, writes Maryam Zakir-Hussain.

But he was surprised to see how long the lines would stretch, having a nasty surprise when he saw he had to walk from Westminster Bridge to London Bridge just to join the queue, and then circle back to Westminster.

“Half of me is telling me to give up and go home. But the other half is saying, ‘Come on, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, keep going.’”

“I will give it seven hours – if we’re still waiting after midnight, I’m going home,” he said.

We’ll wait all night, say mourners queuing

18:01 , Jane Dalton

Patricia Wass from Devon said she was willing to wait all night to see the Queen’s coffin, writes Maryam Zakir-Hussain.

The 64-year-old said: “My mother is an ardent monarchist and she’s been very upset at the Queen’s passing and I wanted to do this for her as well.”

She said she has been feeling very emotional so was prepared to queue for “as long as it takes. If it’s all night, it’s all night”.

Meanwhile, Tzu-Ching Hung, 22, who arrived from Taiwan yesterday, wanted to seize the opportunity to witness history while he is in the UK.

“It’s just amazing to see so many people come to pay tribute to the Queen.”

 (Maryam Zakir-Hussain)
(Maryam Zakir-Hussain)

Queue for lying-in-state around 2.6 miles

18:00 , Jane Dalton

The queue for the public to get into Westminster Hall for the lying-in-state is around 2.6 miles at the moment.

Numbers will be monitored towards the end of the lying-in-state period, which must be completed by 6.30am on Monday, to ensure as many as possible of those already waiting are able complete their visit. But entry to the end of the queue may be closed early.

Entry will also be suspended if the queuing infrastructure – stretching 6.9 miles from Victoria Tower Gardens to Southwark Park, with a further three miles within the park itself – reaches capacity.

There will be more than 1,000 volunteers, stewards, marshals and police officers on hand at any one time as people brave the wait on the banks of the Thames.

This includes 779 professional stewards per shift, assisted by 100 civil service volunteer marshals, 40 adult scouts, and 30 members of the First Aid Nursing Yeomanry charity, as well as Metropolitan Police officers.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is running a live queue tracker to pinpoint the end of the queue, which can be viewed at youtube.com/watch?v=9NpZuGxSgZY.

 (REUTERS)
(REUTERS)

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