Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral date set, will lie in state

World

(NewsNation) — Queen Elizabeth II’s state funeral has been set for Monday, Sept. 19 at Westminster Abbey, the Royal Family announced Saturday.

Organizers said the ceremony will be a “fitting farewell to one of the defining figures of our times.” Full details on the 96-year-old queen’s funeral will be released later.

In the next few days, the queen’s body will be brought from Balmora, first to Edinburgh and then to London, where she will lie in state.

The queen will lie in state in Westminster Hall for four days, to allow the public to pay their respects, according to the palace.

Queen Elizabeth II died Thursday at the age of 96 at Balmoral Castle, her summer residence in Scotland. Members of the royal family rushed to be at her side.

The Queen’s 73-year-old son Charles automatically became King, and was officially proclaimed Saturday.

“We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished Sovereign and a much-loved Mother,” a statement from King Charles III said. “I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.”

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II attends a garden party for members of the public at Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, to mark the occasion of her 80th birthday in 2016. (Danny Lawson/Rota/PA)

Britain’s longest-reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II ascended to the throne when she was 24, in 1952.

Elizabeth’s funeral will follow a traditional 10-day national period of mourning.

Currently, the Queen’s Coffin is at Balmoral Castle.

The queen’s oak coffin will be carried from Balmoral Castle by six gamekeepers from her estate and driven to Edinburgh, passing through towns and villages so people can pay their respects along the route. It rests overnight at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in the Scottish capital.

A procession on Monday will take the coffin, accompanied by the king and queen consort, to St. Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh, then to Buckingham Palace in London, before going to the Palace of Westminster.

Prince William on Saturday made his first statement about Queen Elizabeth II’s death. William, now next in line in succession to the throne behind his father King Charles II, said the queen “was by my side at my happiest moments. And she was by my side during the saddest days of my life” in a statement.

William and his wife, Princess Kate, as well as Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, viewed floral tributes left by the public in honor of the Queen. Both princes and their wives studied the bouquets before waving at a crowd of well-wishers outside the gates of Windsor Castle.

Britain’s Prince William and Kate, Princess of Wales, left, and Britain’s Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex walk to greet the crowds after viewing the floral tributes for the late Queen Elizabeth II outside Windsor Castle, in Windsor, England, Saturday, Sept. 10, 2022. (AP Photo/Alberto Pezzali)

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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