Queen's death: Crowds expected in Edinburgh as king leads procession

Queen's Death: Crowds Expected In Edinburgh As King Leads Procession
The queen's coffin will be taken from the Palace of Holyroodhouse to nearby St Giles’ Cathedral. Photo: PA
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By Tony Jones and Dominic McGrath

Large crowds are expected in Scotland on Monday as Britain's King Charles prepares to lead the royal family in a procession behind the coffin of his mother when it travels to an Edinburgh cathedral to allow the public to pay their respects.

The queen will be taken from the Palace of Holyroodhouse to nearby St Giles’ Cathedral where her family, and a congregation drawn from all areas of Scottish society, will attend a service of thanksgiving for her life.


Full details about the royal mourners have yet to be released but there is speculation Princes Harry and William, along with their wives Meghan and Kate, who on Saturday put on a united front during an appearance at Windsor Castle, will be part of the group.


Queen Elizabeth II death
Princess Anne curtseying as the queen’s coffin arrives at Holyroodhouse. Photo: PA

Charles will lead some of the royals – expected to be Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Princess Anne and her husband Vice Admiral Tim Laurence – on foot, while Camilla and other members of the monarchy follow in cars.

Members of the public will be able to view the coffin to pay their respects for 24 hours before it is taken to London to lie in state.


Later in the evening, the king and other members of his family, likely his siblings, will hold a vigil at the cathedral in honour of the queen.


Charles and Camilla are in London and, before leaving for the Scottish capital, will visit Westminster Hall, where both Houses of Parliament will express their condolences to the new monarch and his wife, with the King giving his reply.


During his day in Edinburgh, the king will inspect a guard of honour at the Palace of Holyroodhouse before attending a ceremony of the keys on the forecourt.

At the Palace, the king will hold audiences with Scotland's first minister Nicola Sturgeon and, separately, Alison Johnstone, the Scottish Parliament’s presiding officer.

Words of sympathy will be expressed by the Scottish Parliament when Charles and Camilla attend to receive a motion of condolence, with the king replying.

Ms Johnstone told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that parliament will “come together to express through a motion of condolence our deepest condolences to His Majesty the King and to the royal family”.


She added: “The tone will be respectful. This afternoon gives us an opportunity to reflect on the life of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth, to pay gratitude for that life and to ensure that the royal family have the support… the heartfelt sympathies of the Scottish people.”

Edinburgh City Council leader Cammy Day said on Monday the city is expecting large crowds.

King Charles III
Britain's King Charles III is expected in Scotland later on Monday. Photo: PA

“We’re expecting tens of thousands of people to be up and down the high street as Her Majesty comes up to St Giles’ and then onwards from there tomorrow,” he told BBC Radio Scotland.

“Our advice to people is to get to the city centre as quickly and early as you can [and] use public transport because the city has diversions or road closures.

“We are looking forward to welcoming tens of thousands of people to give Her Majesty the send off that the city will give her.”

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