QUEUES to see the Queen lying in state could take 12 hours and stretch over three miles.
Whitehall chiefs, in charge of the logistics of the historic five-night vigil, originally estimated 40,000 people would show up each day.
However, they now believe the number will be much, much higher and that many people will have to make it through the night.
They estimate the number could well exceed the 200,000 who paid their respects to the Queen Mother in 2002.
And they say it might be closer to the millions of mourners who passed by Pope John Paul II when he was in state in Rome in 2005.
The route will be lined with additional portable toilets and water stations to ensure the public is catered for on their way to Westminster Hall in central London from Wednesday.
Mourners go through airport security and only small bags are allowed.
Medics at nearby Guy’s and St Thomas hospitals are on standby should those in the queue fall ill.
Planners who followed Operation London Bridge protocol identified a park next to Tower Bridge as the starting point for the queue.
It will then move along the South Bank of the River Thames, passing London Bridge, Blackfriars Bridge, the Globe Theatre, Tate Modern and the London Eye.
Anyone with luggage must stop along the route and leave it in a park by Lambeth Palace before rejoining the queue.
Mourners will cross Lambeth Bridge before turning back to enter Westminster Hall.
That will be open 24 hours a day for mourners to pass by the late monarch’s coffin, with insiders revealing people may have to wait up to 12 hours from start to finish.
Before the coffin reaches Westminster Hall – part of the Parliamentary compound – there will be a ceremonial procession through the capital.
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The horse-drawn gun carriage travels through The Mall, Horse Guards Arch and Whitehall before entering the Palace of Westminster.
Cannons will be fired in Hyde Park during the procession and Big Ben is expected to ring.
The coffin will rest on a raised platform in the center of Westminster Hall and will be under 24-hour military guard.
At some point, the late Queen’s four children – King Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward – could be standing around the coffin.
The royal tradition, which dates back to 1936, is known as the Princes’ Vigil.
Her grandchildren, including Prince William and Prince Harry, could also attend, but no details have been released.
The Princes’ Vigil was held for the first time when King George V lay in rank and file and his three sons stood guard at the coffin.
The Queen’s coffin herself is draped in a royal flag and a crown or other regalia might be placed on top.
Members of the public will come and pay their respects to the late sovereign.
The last person to lay in state was Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, in 2002, where an estimated 200,000 people paid their respects.
She had a ceremonial funeral, but it also involved state lies.
At the laying-out, the Queen’s closed coffin will rest on a raised platform, known as the catafalque, in Westminster Hall, draped in the royal standard on which the sovereign’s orb and sovereign’s scepter are placed.
Each corner of the platform is patrolled 24 hours a day by a guard composed of units from the Tower of London’s Sovereign’s Bodyguard, Household Division or Yeoman Warders.
So that as many people as possible can pay their respects, the coffin will be visible 24 hours a day.
Meanwhile, the Archbishop of Canterbury has described the Queen as “the most wonderful example of a Christian life and death”.
The Rev. Justin Welby made the touching remarks yesterday while preaching Holy Communion at a special service at Canterbury Cathedral.
In his homily, the Archbishop thanked people for taking part in the “extraordinarily unexpected Sunday” following Her Majesty’s death.
He said: “God graciously gave us the most wonderful example of a Christian life and death.
“Her late Majesty has taught us much, if not more, about God and grace, both in words and in deeds which she affirms, than any other contemporary figure.
“We don’t remember what she had, but what she gave.
“What a precious blessing and how precious she was to us and how deeply we feel her loss.”
Strict limit of security with pockets
MOURNERS may have to queue overnight to pay their respects, officials have warned.
The public will pass through airport-style security, with only small bags allowed.
You will be given a wristband towards the end of the queue and only those who have one will be admitted.
If you have to wait longer, you should consider whether or not to bring children with you.
People should bring appropriate clothing, food and drink for the queue, medication and a phone charger.
Large bags, hip flasks and flowers are prohibited on the Landtag grounds.
It is recommended not to film or photograph inside the Palace of Westminster.
More details will be announced tomorrow at 10am.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/6198342/queues-the-queen-lying-in-state-12-hours-three-miles/ Queues to see the queen in state could last 12 hours and stretch three miles