Thousands expected to line route as Queen’s coffin leaves Balmoral for six-hour journey to to Edinburgh | UK News
Thousands are expected to turn out on the streets of Scotland later as the Queen’s coffin is driven from Balmoral to Edinburgh.
Six gamekeepers from the estate will lift her oak coffin into a hearse at 10am, with the journey expected to take about six hours.
She will rest at Edinburgh’s Holyroodhouse – the monarch’s official Scottish residence – to allow staff to pay their respects.
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The public will get their first chance to see the coffin on Monday, when it moves to the city’s St Giles Cathedral.
Today’s journey goes through some of the stunning countryside the Queen loved so much, arriving in Aberdeen at about 11.20am and moving through the city’s suburbs.
Heading south, the cortege will arrive in Dundee around 2.15pm and then head towards Perth, before picking up the M90 motorway.
The biggest crowds are likely to be in Edinburgh, where the route takes in the full length of the famous Royal Mile – the city’s main tourist area – at about 4pm.
Watch Sky News live from 10am as a cortege takes the coffin from Balmoral to Edinburgh.
The Queen will rest overnight in the Throne Room at Holyroodhouse, before the King and Queen Consort join a procession to the cathedral on Monday afternoon.
Public viewing of the coffin begins at 5pm on Monday but people have been warned of long waits, and photography and recording is strictly prohibited.
The King and other senior royals will keep constant watch around the coffin, known as the Vigil of the Princes, from 7.20pm on Monday.
Princess Anne will fly to London with her mother’s body on Tuesday.
The events in Scotland are the first meticulously planned steps leading to the funeral in Westminster Abbey on Monday 19 September – a day that will be a bank holiday.
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King proclaimed in historic ceremony
On Saturday, Charles III was officially proclaimed King in an ancient ceremony at St James’s Palace in London.
The Accession Council meeting took place in front of Privy Counsellors including Prince William, the Archbishop of Canterbury and six former prime ministers.
Standing before the throne, the King said his mother’s reign was “unequalled in its duration, dedication and devotion”.
The ceremony included trumpeters, a rendition of the national anthem and “three cheers for the King”. An hour later, a second proclamation was read at the Royal Exchange in the City of London.
Prince Andrew and the Queen’s other children and grandchildren had earlier come together to look at the flowers left for the Queen at Balmoral.
“We’ve been allowed one day, now we start the process of handing her on,” Andrew said as he thanked well-wishers.
Several members of the family were seen wiping away tears as they read the public’s messages.
There was also a touching tribute from Prince William as the new heir paid tribute to his “Grannie” in a statement published on Twitter.
“She was by my side at my happiest moments. And she was by my side during the saddest days of my life,” he said.
“I knew this day would come, but it will be some time before the reality of life without Grannie will truly feel real.”
The prince said he was grateful his children got to spend precious years in her company, creating “memories that will last their whole lives”.
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Princes set aside rift in show of unity
However, it was unscheduled event that made most newspaper front pages on Sunday – with William and Prince Harry seemingly putting aside their rift to meet the public in Windsor.
The brothers were joined by Kate and Meghan and the couples greeted people for over 45 minutes on the town’s Long Walk.
It’s understood Prince William reached out to his brother with the hope of putting on a show of unity after their much-publicised falling out of the last few years.
The King had set the tone on Friday when he stopped outside Buckingham Palace on Friday to meet the public – a move that was widely praised – and one he repeated on Saturday near Clarence House.
One of his first engagements is an audience with the Commonwealth secretary-general at Buckingham Palace on Sunday, before later meeting high commissioners from countries where he is head of state.
Looking ahead to next week, the Queen’s coffin will be taken to Buckingham Palace after it lands in London on Tuesday, allowing staff to pay their respects.
It will then be taken to Westminster Hall on Wednesday, and on Thursday four clear days of lying in state begin – with hundreds of thousands expected to file past the coffin.