I joined the crowds assembled to watch the procession of The Queen’s lying-in-state.
Opposite the Cabinet Office and Foreign Office in London, with an uninterrupted, privileged, view of the procession and sunny weather, it was a grand occasion.
Led and followed up by an all-female quadruplet of horse-riders from the Police – another female, Capt Amy Cooper riding Lord Firebrand, led the King’s Hussars who drew the gun carriage and coffin. As The Queen was an excellent horse-rider their choice must have been deliberate.
On the coffin was the Imperial State Crown, a name possibly appropriate in 1937, when it was made to replace older versions, though less appropriate now that there is no longer a British Empire. The carriage was escorted, to its side, by Queen Elizabeth’s current and former military equerries.
King Charles and other members of his family walked behind the Gun Carriage.
Green Park, just north of Buckingham Place, is now the final resting place of thousands of Floral Memorials to The Queen. It’s quite a sight and has drawn crowds. It would be great to have a Flower Lawn will be laid out as a more permanent memory.
The music played by the Scots Guards and the Grenadier Guards is called “Beethoven Funeral March Number 1” by Johann Walch, the court composer to the Duke of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, the father of Prince Albert, Queen Victoria’s husband and therefore an ancestor of The Queen. As well as in this ceremony, this March was played at the funeral of Prince Phillip (by the Band of the Grenadier Guards), Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother (mixed regiments), the British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher (by the Royal Marines), and Prime Minister of Singapore, Lee Kuan Yew. Presumably, the Dukes of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha also had the same March played at their funerals.
Check out my video below. The camera boom is the BBC’s, – so there will be some TV coverage from the same location – which is directly opposite the vehicle entrance into Downing St.