How to see Her Majesty, the Queen, lying-in-state

·5-min read
Photo credit: Pool/Samir Hussein - Getty Images
Photo credit: Pool/Samir Hussein - Getty Images

On 8 September 2022, Buckingham Palace announced that Her Majesty, the Queen, had "died peacefully at Balmoral."

In the aftermath of Her Majesty's death, the UK is in a period of national mourning, with the Queen's coffin currently making the journey from Balmoral to London.

If you wish to show your respects to Her Majesty by visiting her lying-in-state, here's everything you need to know.

Will the Queen lie-in-state?

Buckingham Palace has confirmed that the Queen will lie-in-state for four days, meaning the public will be able to view Her Majesty's coffin to pay their respects.

In an official statement, the Palace says: "The State Funeral of Her Majesty The Queen will take place at Westminster Abbey on Monday 19th September at 1100hrs BST.

"Prior to the State Funeral, The Queen will Lie-in-State in Westminster Hall for four days, to allow the public to pay their respects."

Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

Where is the Queen lying-in-state?

The Queen will lie-in-state in Westminster Hall. After her coffin is transferred from Scotland, an official procession will bring her from Buckingham Palace to lie at Westminster Hall.

For the funeral on Monday, 19 September, Her Majesty's coffin will be moved across Parliament Square to Westminster Abbey, where the funeral service will take place.

Photo credit: Flavia Morlachetti - Getty Images
Photo credit: Flavia Morlachetti - Getty Images

Can I visit the Queen lying-in-state?

A statement from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport says:

"Her Majesty The Queen’s Lying-in-State at the Palace of Westminster opens to the public at 5pm on Wednesday 14 September. It will be open 24 hours a day until it closes at 6.30am on Monday 19 September."

If you wish to go and pay your respects by visiting Her Majesty lying-in-state, you may do so during the times specified above.

Please note, if you are planning on visiting, that security procedures will be in place. The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport says:

"Visitors will go through airport-style security and there are tight restrictions on what you can take in. Only small bags are permitted."

Photo credit: Dan Kitwood - Getty Images
Photo credit: Dan Kitwood - Getty Images

How long will I wait to pay my respects?

Very long queues are expected to visit the Queen lying-in-state. There may also be accessibility issues, which will affect those who have difficulty standing. The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport advises: "You will need to stand for many hours, possibly overnight, with very little opportunity to sit down as the queue will be continuously moving."

Furthermore, The Times reported that Culture Secretary, Michelle Donelan, told fellow MPs: "Queues could be up to 30 hours as we are obviously expecting and planning for unprecedented demand."

Photo credit: Leon Neal - Getty Images
Photo credit: Leon Neal - Getty Images

How can I travel to Westminster?

It will be very busy when travelling to Westminster, with road closures, transport closures and queues taking place in certain areas.

TFL has an in-depth, dedicated help page on road closures and changes to transport. However, some key points to note are:

TFL advises that you check the status of your journey and use its journey planner tool before travelling.

Are there any other ways to leave a tribute?

If you don't wish to see Her Majesty lying-in-state, or can't do this, there are plenty of other ways to leave a tribute to the Queen.

One way is by signing a Book of Condolence. Buckingham Palace has set up a virtual Book of Condolence - and some messages will be selected to show the Royal Family.

The Church of England has a virtual Book of Condolence, with many local churches offering in-person opportunities to sign.

Moreover, local councils will have locations where you can sign a physical Book of Condolence. Check your council's website for details.

There is also the opportunity to leave flowers and cards for Her Majesty at the Royal Residences. Guidance given by the Palace reads:

  • At Buckingham Palace members of the public will be guided to lay floral tributes at dedicated sites in The Green Park. Flowers left outside the gates of Buckingham Palace will be moved to The Green Park Floral Tribute Garden by The Royal Parks. Further guidance will be issued by The Royal Parks.

  • At Windsor Castle, floral tributes can be left at Cambridge Gate on the Long Walk. These flowers will be brought inside the Castle every evening, and placed on the Castle Chapter grass on the south side of St George’s Chapel and Cambridge Drive.

  • At the Sandringham Estate, members of the public are encouraged to leave floral tributes at the Norwich Gates.

  • At Balmoral Castle, floral tributes can be left at the Main Gate.

  • At the Palace of Holyroodhouse, members of the public are encouraged to lay floral tributes in the Physic Garden, next to the Abbey Strand gate.

  • At Hillsborough Castle, floral tributes may be laid on the Castle Forecourt, in front of the main gates.

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