The Queen Now Lies in State, and the Line Grows and Grows

Her coffin has been moved to Westminster, where it will remain until Monday
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 14, 2022 10:40 AM CDT
The Queen Now Lies in State, and the Line Grows and Grows
The coffin of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II arrives at Westminster Hall from Buckingham Palace for her lying in state, in London on Wednesday.   (Alkis Konstantinidis/Pool photo via AP)

The queen has left Buckingham Palace for the last time. Queen Elizabeth II's coffin was on Wednesday taken from the palace to Westminster Hall, where she will lie in state until 6:30am local time Monday, the day of her funeral. King Charles III led the procession behind the coffin alongside his siblings and two sons. Once at Westminster, the queen's coffin was placed on a raised platform called a catafalque; it will be guarded by soldiers whose units serve the Royal Household round-the-clock. The BBC reports that prior to Elizabeth, the last royal family member to lie in state at Westminster was the queen mother, who did so in 2002. Some 200,000 people viewed her coffin, and that number could be dwarfed this time around.

The AP reports on the "mammoth logistical challenge" of getting all those who want to pay their final respects past the queen's coffin in the next four days. Queue management experts and behavioral scientists have helped authorities design 10 miles of "queuing infrastructure," complete with movable barriers and more than 500 portable toilets, leading to Westminster. Two hours before Westminster was to be opened to the public at 5pm local time, a 2-mile line had formed.

Potential well-wishers were warned by the government that "you will need to stand for many hours, possibly overnight, with very little opportunity to sit down as the queue will be continuously moving." Those entering the line will receive a numbered wristband, which will allow them to hold their place should they need to take a food or bathroom break. Westminster will remain open 24 hours a day. (More Queen Elizabeth II stories.)

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