United Kingdom in mourning: Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin begins visit to Scottish castle

LONDON – The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II made a final journey through the Scottish countryside on Sunday from her beloved summer residence at Balmoral Castle and on to London. Silent mourners lined the chariot and some threw flowers in memory of the emperor, who died after 70 years on the throne.

The car passed bouquets and other tributes in a seven-car funeral procession from Balmoral, where the Queen died on Thursday, to the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, a six-hour drive. The coffin was draped in the royal standard of Scotland and a wreath of flowers from the estate, including the Queen’s favorite sweet peas, were placed on top.

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted: “A sad and painful moment for Her Majesty the Queen to leave her beloved Balmoral for the last time.” “Today, as she begins her journey to Edinburgh, Scotland will pay tribute to an extraordinary woman.”

The country cries for the passing away of his majesty

People waited on parts of the planned route as the country mourned the longest-serving monarch that most Britons have ever known. In the Scottish town of Ballater, where people considered the royal family neighbors, hundreds watched in silence, some throwing flowers at cars.

“She meant a lot to the people of the region. It was unbelievable to see people crying,” said Victoria Pacheco, who ran a guest house.

Similar scenes of silent display of respect were seen in every town and village through which the procession passed. People stood, some applauding, others pointing their cell phone cameras at the caravan.

Sunday’s solemn visit to Scotland came a day after the Queen’s eldest son, King Charles III, was officially declared the new monarch in a grand ceremony steeped in ancient tradition and political symbolism.

“I am deeply aware of the enormous duties and responsibilities of this great legacy and sovereignty that have now been entrusted to me,” assured Carlos of handling the tasks of governance.

Charles III will be proclaimed king on Sunday in English cities and other countries of the United Kingdom: Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Declarations had previously been made elsewhere in the Commonwealth, which group former British colonies such as Australia and New Zealand.

In Wellington, New Zealand’s capital, the Crown’s representative, Governor General Cindy Kiro, said that “on behalf of the New Zealanders, I wish King Charles our loyalty and support and a long and happy reign.”

Elizabeth became sovereign of the United Kingdom at the age of 25 and had 14 prime ministers in England during her administration. This is your legacy.

Carlos worked even during the mourning for his mother. He was due to meet at Buckingham Palace with the Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, a group of countries grappling with affection for the Queen and bitter over her colonial legacy. That legacy ranges from slavery in African schools to corporal punishment to looted antiquities in British institutions.

There were signs of a possible family reconciliation amid mourning in the House of Windsor. Prince William and his brother Harry cheered mourners near Windsor Castle with an unexpected joint appearance on Saturday with their wives Catherine, Princess of Wales and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex.

The queen’s coffin will make several stops on the way back to the capital. On Monday, he will be taken from Holyroodhouse to nearby St Giles’ Cathedral, where he will stay until Tuesday before leaving for London. The coffin will be carried from Buckingham Palace to Parliament, where the funeral chapel will be held until the funeral service at Westminster Abbey on 19 September.

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