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Casket of Queen Elizabeth II returns home to London

Casket of Queen Elizabeth II returns home to London

Posted  32 Views updated 12 days ago

LONDON (AP) — The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II returned to a drizzly London on Tuesday evening, making its way toward the monarch's home Buckingham Palace as crowds lined the route to catch a glimpse of the hearse and to bid her a final farewell.

Her son, King Charles III, had already returned to London from Northern Ireland, where his visit drew a rare moment of unity from politicians in a region with a contested British and Irish identity that is deeply divided over the monarchy.

The military C-17 Globemaster carrying the casket touched down at RAF Northolt, an air force base west of the city, about an hour after it left her beloved Scotland. U.K. Prime Minister Liz Truss, Defense Secretary Ben Wallace and a military honor guard were among those greeting the coffin.

The queen's body made its final journey to London from Balmoral Castle in northern Scotland, where the monarch died September 8 at age 96 after 70 years on the throne.

It traveled past thousands of people who gathered in the rain along the road. Some had parked their cars along the normally busy route, got out and waved as the hearse passed.

Charles and other members of immediate family will meet the coffin at Buckingham Palace, where it will spend a final night at the queen's London home.

It will be taken by horse-drawn gun carriage Wednesday to the Houses of Parliament to lie in state for four days before Monday's funeral at Westminster Abbey.

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