Edinburgh prepares to welcome the late monarch

Edinburgh prepares to welcome the late monarch
Passers-by watch members of the 4th Battalion Royal Regiment of Scotland outside St Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh, Scotland, Saturday September 10, 2022.

The coffin of Elizabeth II, died Thursday at her Scottish residence in Balmoralwill be transported on Sunday September 11 through Scotland to reach Edinburgh, where the public will be able to pay a first tribute to the monarch, before her solemn return to London on Tuesday for a national funeral on September 19.

The royal hearse is due to leave Balmoral, the residence where the monarch loved to spend the summer, at 10 a.m. local time (11 a.m. Paris time), arriving in Edinburgh, the Scottish capital, around 4 p.m. local time (5 p.m. Paris time) after a journey of almost 300 kilometres.

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A large crowd is expected on the route of the funeral convoy, to greet one last time the one who reigned seventy years and seven months, a familiar and reassuring presence, but always mysterious, having crossed, imperturbable, times and crises. The crowd was asked not to throw flowers as the convoy passed. The hearse will first stop in Ballater, the village very close to the castle, then in Aberdeen and Dundee before reaching Edinburgh. The coffin will spend the night there in the throne room of Holyroodhouse, the official royal residence in Scotland.

State funeral at Westminster

On Saturday, Buckingham Palace confirmed that the state funeral would take place on September 19 at Westminster Abbey, in London, a mecca for royal weddings, coronations and burials for almost a millennium. It was there that the one who was still only Princess Elizabeth had married in November 1947, at the age of 21, Philip Mountbatten. This is also where she was crowned on June 2, 1953. Leaders from around the world are expected for the ceremony, including US President Joe Biden.

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Tens of thousands of people are also expected to pay their last respects to him at the Palace of Westminster, where his coffin will be displayed from September 14 to 19, before the funeral which will begin at 12 p.m. Paris time on the 19, a public holiday in the United Kingdom. United.

His grandson William, now Prince of Wales and heir to the throne, paid his respects on Saturday. “She was by my side in my happiest moments. And she was by my side during the saddest days of my life. I knew this day was coming, but it’s going to take time to get used to the reality of life without Grandma.”he said in a statement.

“My grandmother said grief was the price to pay for love. All the sadness we will feel in the weeks to come will testify to the love we have for our extraordinary queen. I will honor his memory by supporting my father, the king, in any way I can. »

“All 4 One”

The prince then created the surprise by going with his wife Kate, but also his brother Harry and his wife Meghan to meditate in front of the flowers placed in tribute to Elizabeth II in front of Windsor Castle. The two couples are notoriously cold, Harry and Meghan now settled in California. They had not been seen together in public for more than two years and their walkabout was greeted with applause.

“All 4 One”headlined the tabloid The Sun for its Sunday edition, featuring an image of the quartet on the front page, also on the front page of all UK media sites on Saturday evening. The children of Charles III thus almost eclipsed their father, proclaimed king in the morning according to a ceremonial centenary, televised for the first time, after having automatically become king Thursday at the announcement of the death of Elizabeth II.

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Looking increasingly frail in recent months, the Queen has devoted her life to the monarchy. On Tuesday, she was still working, receiving in audience the resigning Prime Minister Boris Johnson and the new Prime Minister, Liz Truss, whom she had asked to create a new government. The monarch, too weak to travel, had however remained at Balmoral for these audiences.

The World with AFP

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