Queen to be laid to rest beside husband – as royals bid farewell at procession and funeral

UK

The Queen’s coffin has been seen in public for the last time before she is laid to rest beside her husband – with the nation bidding farewell to Britain’s longest reigning monarch.

Thousands of people lined the Long Walk leading to Windsor Castle and broke out in applause as the coffin was carried in a procession to the landmark.

A committal ceremony was held at St George’s Chapel in the grounds of the castle, where the Queen’s coffin was lowered into the Royal Vault, with a private burial service taking place later this evening.

Follow live updates from Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral

The hearse travels along the Long Walk as it makes its way to Windsor Castle, on the day of the state funeral and burial of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, in Windsor, Britain, September 19, 2022. REUTERS/Carl Recine
King Charles III places the the Queen's Company Camp Colour of the Grenadier Guards on the coffin

The Queen’s final resting place is in the King George VI memorial chapel, an annex to the main chapel where her mother and father were buried, along with the ashes of her sister, Princess Margaret.

The coffin of the Queen’s beloved husband, Prince Philip, has been moved from the royal vault to the memorial chapel to join her.

In a touching gesture, the late monarch’s two faithful friends, her corgis Muick and Sandy, were part of the day and made an appearance outside St George’s Chapel.

Around 800 people, including senior royals and members of the Queen’s Household and Windsor estate staff, attended the committal service.

The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II is carried into St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle, Berkshire for her Committal Service. Picture date: Monday September 19, 2022.
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The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II is carried into St George’s Chapel

The King took the same seat where the Queen sat alone for the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prior to the final hymn, the Imperial State Crown, the orb and the sceptre were removed from the Queen’s coffin, and placed on the altar.

At the end of the final hymn, the King placed the Queen’s company camp colour of the Grenadier Guards on the coffin.

The coffin was lowered into the Royal Vault as the dean of Windsor read a psalm. The Queen’s piper then played a lament as he walked away, in a symbolic gesture.

The Archbishop of Canterbury then concluded the service with a blessing before the congregation sang the national anthem.

Queen’s state funeral

Earlier, the King led members of the Royal Family in a procession to Westminster Abbey for the Queen’s state funeral, where world leaders were among the congregation at the hour-long service.

In a personal touch, the wreath adorning the Queen’s coffin had a handwritten note written by the King, which read: “In loving and devoted memory. Charles R.”

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Senior royals follow Queen’s coffin

Following the funeral, the coffin was carried in a grand procession through London, passing Buckingham Palace, before it was driven to Windsor.

Hundreds of thousands of people have travelled to London and Windsor for the funeral and burial service, which are being watched on television by millions around the world.

Some 2,000 mourners – including heads of state, prime ministers, presidents, and members of European royal families – gathered for the funeral at the abbey, where the first guests took their seats hours before the service started.

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Emotional King at his mother’s funeral

‘We will meet again’

Delivering the sermon, the Archbishop of Canterbury told mourners the “grief” felt around the world over the Queen’s death “arises from her abundant life and loving service”.

“She was joyful, present to so many, touching a multitude of lives,” the Most Rev Justin Welby said.

“People of loving service are rare in any walk of life. Leaders of loving service are still rarer.

“Her late Majesty’s broadcast during the COVID lockdown ended with ‘We will meet again’, words of hope from a song of Vera Lynn.”

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Queen’s coffin enters Westminster Abbey

He added: “All who follow the Queen’s example, and inspiration of trust and faith in God, can with her say: ‘We will meet again’.”

Shortly after 10.35am, the coffin left Westminster Hall where the final members of the public queued overnight to see the Queen lying in state.

The Queen’s children walked behind the coffin, which was carried on a gun carriage in a military procession.

Inside Westminster Abbey, the King and the Queen Consort walked immediately behind the coffin, followed by the Princess Royal and her husband Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence, the Duke of York, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, and the Prince and Princess of Wales.

King Charles III and the Queen Consort in front of the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II during her State Funeral at the Abbey in London. Picture date: Monday September 19, 2022.
Britain's Queen Elizabeth's coffin is carried on the day of the state funeral and burial of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, at Westminster Abbey in London, Britain, September 19, 2022. REUTERS/Phil Noble/Pool

George and Charlotte walk behind coffin

Prince George and Princess Charlotte accompanied their parents, followed by their uncle and aunt, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, and other members of the Royal Family.

Before the service, the Princess of Wales could be seen holding Charlotte’s hand, and giving her a reassuring touch on the shoulder.

As the youngsters walked behind their great grandmother’s coffin, Charlotte held her hands clasped in front of her and George had his arms by his side.

Britain's Catherine, Princess of Wales, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex Prince George and Princess Charlotte attend, on the day of the state funeral and burial of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, at Westminster Abbey in London, Britain, September 19, 2022. REUTERS/Phil Noble/Pool
Britain's Prince George and Princess Charlotte walk after a service at Westminster Abbey on the day of the state funeral and burial of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, in London, Britain, September 19, 2022. REUTERS/Hannah McKay/Pool

The Dean of Windsor told the congregation: “Here, where Queen Elizabeth was married and crowned, we gather from across the nation, from the Commonwealth, and from the nations of the world, to mourn our loss, to remember her long life of selfless service, and in sure confidence to commit her to the mercy of God our maker and redeemer.”

The King was close to tears during the funeral, while the Countess of Wessex was seen dabbing her eyes.

Queen funeral

The wreath on top of the coffin included flowers requested by King Charles and cut from the gardens of Buckingham Palace, Clarence House and Highgrove House.

State trumpeters from the Household Cavalry sounded the Last Post followed by a two-minute silence across the country, with the national anthem then sung by the congregation.

Read more:
Order of service for Queen’s state funeral
King’s goodbye message and Andrew’s tears – key moments

People get emocional as the procession goes on on the day of the state funeral and burial of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, in London, Britain, September 19, 2022.   REUTERS/Marko Djurica/Pool
The coffin of Britain's Queen Elizabeth is pulled along The Mall by Royal Navy service personnel during the funeral procession, on the day of the state funeral and burial of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, in London, Britain, September 19, 2022 REUTERS/Andrew Boyers
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The coffin is carried along The Mall in London

Crowds gather for historic procession

Crowds lining The Mall in London broke into spontaneous applause after the national anthem was played.

Tens of thousands of mourners lined the ceremonial procession route from the Abbey to Wellington Arch, where the Queen’s coffin left for Windsor Castle.

Britain's King Charles salutes as he departs Wellington Arch on the day of the state funeral and burial of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, in London, Britain, September 19, 2022 REUTERS/Toby Melville

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Queen’s final London procession

In a moving gesture, staff from Buckingham Palace stood outside the gates of the royal residence and watched as the late monarch was taken past.

Behind her coffin were the King and his siblings – the Princess Royal, Duke of York and Earl of Wessex – who were followed by the monarch’s three grandsons, Peter Phillips, Duke of Sussex and Prince of Wales.

Travelling behind in state limousines were the Princess of Wales and her children George and Charlotte, the Queen Consort, the Duchess of Sussex and the Countess of Wessex.

Read more:
In pictures: the Queen’s state funeral
The history and significance of Queen’s final resting place

After the Queen’s coffin was transferred to the state hearse at Wellington Arch, flowers were thrown into the road by members of the public watching from behind a fence.

All public viewing areas for the funeral procession were full nearly two hours before the start of the service, London’s City Hall said.

The Queen died on Thursday 8 September at the age of 96, bringing an end to her 70-year reign and triggering a period of national mourning.

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