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Thursday February 2nd, 2023 8:16PM

Live updates: Long wait as line forms to view queen's coffin

By The Associated Press
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LONDON — A line has already started forming to view Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin when she lies in state in London, even though that won’t start till Wednesday evening.

Security staff are preparing for millions of people to pay their respects to the late monarch, whose coffin will be in London’s Westminster Hall until her state funeral on Sept. 19.

Vanessa Nathakumaran, 56, travelled Monday from Harrow near London to Lambeth Bridge in central London, where the entrance of the line is expected to be set up.

“I really, really want to be part of it,” said Nathakumaran, who is originally from Sri Lanka — a country once called Ceylon and ruled by Britain.

The line is expected to stretch from Parliament along the bank of the River Thames.

Officials have advised commuters in the city to change their working patterns because London is expected to be extremely busy in coming days.

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KEY DEVELOPMENTS:

— Loss of unifying queen could fray the bonds of fractious UK

— People wanting to pay final respects to queen face long wait, strict rules

— For Queen Elizabeth II, Balmoral estate was place to ‘be normal’

— Queen Elizabeth II loved corgis breed from childhood

— Former British colonies conflicted over Queen Elizabeth II

— What’s next for the UK as Queen Elizabeth II laid to rest

— What will happen to all the currencies that feature the queen?

— The queen, as imagined — from punk rock to mystery novels

— Find more AP coverage here: https://apnews.com/hub/queen-elizabeth-ii

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OTHER DEVELOPMENTS:

EDINBURGH, Scotland — A memorial service for Queen Elizabeth II at St. Giles’ cathedral in Edinburgh has ended, and members of the public will soon be allowed inside to pay their respects.

The coffin, with the Crown of Scotland resting on a cushion on top of it, is to stay in the 12th-century cathedral through Tuesday.

Thousands of people lined the route of the procession through the Scottish capital’s Old Town to the cathedral, as the former monarch’s children — including new sovereign King Charles III — walked behind the hearse.

The memorial service featured Karen Matheson singing Psalm 118 in Gaelic, with harp accompaniment, and a reading from Ecclesiastes by the head of the Scottish government, Nicola Sturgeon.

The congregation sang The Lord’s My Shepherd, said to be one of the queen’s favorite hymns.

Members of the royal family were to hold a vigil by the coffin in the evening.

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EDINBURGH, Scotland — Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin has arrived at St. Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh for a memorial service.

A hearse containing the coffin headed a procession Monday through the Scottish capital’s Old Town. Thousands of people lined the street known as the Royal Mile, which links Edinburgh Castle with the Palace of Holyroodhouse.

St. Giles’ Cathedral, founded in the 1130s, is holding a service of thanksgiving.

Afterward, members of the public will be allowed inside to file past the coffin. Some have been waiting since around dawn.

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EDINBURGH, Scotland — The children of Queen Elizabeth II are accompanying their mother’s coffin on a procession through the Scottish capital.

A military bagpiper played mournful music as the coffin, draped in the royal standard, was carried from the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh and placed in a hearse Monday.

King Charles III, dressed in army uniform, and his siblings Princes Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward are walking behind the hearse as the procession moves slowly toward St. Giles’ Cathedral.

The hearse is flanked by a bearer party of the Royal Regiment of Scotland and a detachment of The King’s Body Guard in Scotland, the Royal Company of Archers.

The coffin will remain at the cathedral until Tuesday so that members of the public can pay their respects.

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LONDON — A plane carrying King Charles has landed in Edinburgh, where the new monarch is due to accompany his late mother’s coffin in a procession through the heart of the Scottish capital.

The procession Monday will bear the former sovereign’s coffin to a cathedral, where it will remain for 24 hours to allow the public to pay their last respects.

Lines of people waiting to file past the coffin at St. Giles’ Cathedral began forming around dawn.

Charles flew to Scotland after earlier receiving condolences from both Britain’s houses of parliament.

He told lawmakers he will follow his late mother’s example of “selfless duty.”

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LONDON — Britain is to observe a nationwide minute of silence Sunday, on the eve of Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral.

The British government says the “moment of reflection” will take place at 8 p.m. (1900GMT).

People are encouraged to mark the silence at home or at community events.

The queen’s funeral will be held next Monday at Westminster Abbey.

Britain’s monarch of the past 70 years died Thursday in Scotland at the age of 96.

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LONDON — King Charles and his wife Camilla, the Queen Consort, have boarded a flight to Edinburgh where the new monarch will take part in a procession bearing his late mother’s coffin to St. Giles’ Cathedral.

The plane left RAF Northolt on the outskirts of London for the flight to Edinburgh Airport on Monday.

In the Scottish capital, Charles and Camilla were due at Hollyroodhouse palace where Queen Elizabeth’s coffin stayed overnight. It arrived there after a six-hour journey in a hearse from the queen’s beloved Balmoral Castle summer retreat, where the 96-year-old sovereign died Thursday.

The royal couple are to attend a service of remembrance for the queen, visit the Scottish Parliament and meet senior officials.

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LONDON — A 100-year-old British woman says she received a congratulatory telegram from Queen Elizabeth II the day after the monarch’s death.

Gwendolyn Hoare read out the telegram in a recording shared with the BBC by her family and aired Monday.

She said it made her “feel quite tearful” and added: “I’m a royalist ... old fashioned.”

Hoare’s niece, Sue Beckett, posted a message to a BBC online page which is compiling tributes to the late queen. She said the telegram arrived Friday, a day before her aunt’s 100th birthday, and a day after the 96-year-old queen had died at her Balmoral estate in Scotland.

“For decades she talked about receiving a telegram from the Queen and was devastated to hear the news ... but her telegram arrived (on Friday) and she was ecstatic,” Beckett wrote.

The British monarch traditionally sends a telegram of congratulations to citizens who reach the age of 100.

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LONDON — King Charles III has addressed lawmakers in Britain’s Parliament, telling them: “I cannot but help feel the weight of history which surrounds us.”

Charles told members of the House of Commons and House of Lords that he would follow his late mother Queen Elizabeth II in upholding “the precious principles of constitutional governance” that underpin the U.K.’s political system.

He paid tribute to his mother, saying: “As Shakespeare said of the earlier Queen Elizabeth, she was a pattern to all princes living.”

Charles is due to travel from Parliament to Edinburgh and accompany the queen’s coffin to St. Giles’ Cathedral for a service of remembrance.

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LONDON — In a first official statement since the queen’s death, her grandson Prince Harry has hailed her as a “guiding compass” and praised her “unwavering grace and dignity.

The personal statement, posted Monday on Harry and his wife Meghan’s Archwell website, said he cherished their times together “from my earliest childhood memories with you, to meeting you for the first time as my Commander-in-Chief, to the first moment you met my darling wife and hugged your beloved greatgrandchildren.”

Harry quit as a senior royal and moved to the U.S. two years ago. On Saturday, he and Meghan joined his brother Prince William and his wife Catherine in meeting mourners outside Windsor Castle.

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WELLINGTON, New Zealand — New Zealand has announced it will mark the death of Queen Elizabeth II with a public holiday on Sept. 26.

The nation will also hold a state memorial service in the capital, Wellington, on the same day. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said Elizabeth was an extraordinary person and many people would appreciate the opportunity to mark her death and celebrate her life.

“As New Zealand’s queen and much-loved sovereign for over 70 years, it is appropriate that we mark her life of dedicated public service with a state memorial service and a one-off public holiday,” Ardern said.

She also said she would be leaving this week for Britain to attend Elizabeth’s funeral.

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WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden has formally accepted an invitation to attend the state funeral service for Queen Elizabeth II.

The White House said Sunday that the president will be accompanied by first lady Jill Biden. The service will be held Sept. 19.

Earlier in the day, Biden remembered the words of comfort that the late monarch had provided to the United States following the Sept. 11 attacks.

“Grief is the price we pay for love,” said Biden, quoting part of the queen’s message to America during remarks on the 21st anniversary of the attacks.

Speaking at a commemoration at the Pentagon, Biden said the queen’s words remain as poignant as they did 21 years ago but the weight of loss also remains heavy.

“On this day, the price feels so great,” Biden said.

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DONCASTER, England — British horse racing has paid tribute to Queen Elizabeth II as the late monarch’s favorite sport returned after a pause following her death.

Two minutes of silence were held at Doncaster on Sunday. A video was then played on the big screens of the queen at various races through the years, along with some of her greatest triumphs as a racehorse owner.

Horse racing was the big sporting fascination of the queen, who became one of the biggest faces of the sport both in Britain and globally and had more than 1,800 winners.

“No one person ever has, or ever will, do so much for so long for horse racing, than did her majesty the queen,” narrator Brough Scott, a former jockey turned TV presenter, said during the video. “The sport worldwide will forever be in her debt.”

It was followed by a long ovation from the jockeys and officials who lined up for the tribute ceremony.

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