Focus turns to Queen’s funeral as world leaders arrive, scaffolding is erected and rehearsals get under way | UK News
Preparations are well under way for the Queen’s state funeral with scaffolding being erected, world leaders arriving in London and rehearsals at Westminster Abbey and Windsor Castle.
As the lying in state continues in Westminster Hall, the queue of mourners waiting to see the monarch’s coffin is now expected to take around 22 hours from the back to the front.
Representatives from the Commonwealth nations have been invited to pay their respects, and heads of state from around the world are arriving throughout the weekend, both to attend the Queen’s funeral, and to sign a book of condolences.
Meanwhile, King Charles will meet the chiefs of staff at Buckingham Palace before visiting police headquarters, where he will thank representatives from all the emergency services involved in the planning and delivery of the events during the mourning period.
He will also attend, with Camilla, the Queen Consort, a lunch for governors general – the people who represent the monarch in overseas realms – at the palace.
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Also on Saturday, the Queen’s grandchildren will take their turn standing in vigil around her coffin.
The Prince of Wales will stand at the head, the Duke of Sussex at the foot.
William will be flanked by his cousins Zara Tindall and Peter Philips – the children of the Princess Royal – while Harry will be with the Duke of York’s daughters Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie.
The Earl of Wessex‘s children Lady Louise and Viscount Severn will stand near the middle.
David Beckham in tears as he views Queen’s coffin after queueing for 13 hours
Watch live stream of the Queen lying in state
Forecasters say the sun is expected to shine on those waiting in the queue and those already securing the best spots for the funeral procession. After a cold start, Saturday should see long, sunny spells with maximum temperatures of 17C (62F), they predict.
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A London Fashion Week diversity fashion show will also take place in honour of the late Queen on Saturday. Models will carry a white lily in tribute.
Codenamed Operation London Bridge, arrangements for the Queen’s death have been carefully pored over for years, with the monarch herself overseeing and approving every detail before her passing.
However, the exact details were kept under wraps until the sitting sovereign, King Charles III, gave it his final seal of approval.
Monday’s funeral is at Westminster Abbey, one of London’s most recognisable landmarks and near the Palace of Westminster.
It has been the setting for every coronation since 1066, and was where the then-Princess Elizabeth married Prince Philip in 1947.