Queen Elizabeth’s funeral: six things to look out for during royal service

In a few hours, an eerie silence will reign in the center of London.

For the first time since 1965, a state funeral procession will pass through the city, along which the military pass, and only 142 sailors echo through the streets, pulling the state artillery carriage with the coffin of Her Majesty.

For the United Kingdom, the loss of a queen that brought an ancient institution into the 21st century was a convulsive shock.

Of course, she was approaching her centenary, and her health had clearly deteriorated over the past 12 months. But no matter how inevitable her death was, Her Majesty is an eternally calm, serious leader who loved a good bar heater and racing mail – so firmly entered the national psyche.

For the whole world, we are going to say goodbye to a woman whose glory was not inferior to her incomprehensibility; for the royal family, they lose their adored mother, grandmother and great-grandmother; and for the monarchy, an unlikely savior.

Do you have a burning royal question before the Queen’s funeral today? News.com.au royal expert Daniela Elzer will be answering your royal questions here live from 13:00 today.

Enter your question for Daniela Elser below:

Her Majesty was most likely the last British queen any adult has ever seen today, and on Monday London prepares for the biggest and most important state event since the death of her father, George VI, in 1952.

While Operation London Bridge could have predicted minute by minute (literally) how the events of today would unfold, the modern House of Windsor is equally defined in the public imagination by the simmering dramas that have surrounded Buckingham Palace in recent years.

Here are the big unknowns to pay attention to today.

Seating policy

Oh my god, this is going to be exciting stuff. Up until the entry into force of the Megxite in 2020, Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, were constantly alongside or behind William and Kate, now the Prince and Princess of Wales. However, in June this year, at the service of thanksgiving for the life of the Queen in St. Paul’s Cathedral, the Sussexes were literally put in their place, in the second row.

Oh how HRH fell.

The communication of this choice was as cruel and crude as it could be; Did you want to befriend Oprah and get paid by Netflix? Then the second row, royal cousin territory.

But that was when they were grandchildren of the monarch. This calculation changes given that Harry is now the king’s son.

So what does this mean for the Queen’s funeral? To be honest, I’m not sure. Will Her Majesty’s family be prioritized around the front rows of Westminster Cathedral based on where they stood when she was alive? Or based on how the cards stacked up now that Charles was king?

Olive branch Harry and Meghan

The royal family made a number of gestures towards the Sussexes last week, all politely ignoring the fact that 18 months ago the couple were busy telling the global TV audience how miserable royal life was.

At this stage, the “no mention of Oprah” approach looks like it could be categorized as pragmatism, as both the Windsor team and the Sussex team are doing their best to ensure that their differences do not overwhelm and detract from the Queen’s celebration. (Bravo everyone here

chapters).

Can we see how this extends to some moment between Wales and the Sussexes, similar to what played out after Prince Philip’s funeral?

Back in April 2021, with Oprah’s incredulous “aha” still ringing in the ears of the world, after serving the late Duke of Edinburgh, Kate, William and Harry, and then just the two brothers, were seen in conversation. Quick! Somebody ring the peace bell! Except then, as now, this moment seems largely far-fetched.

Here’s the $169 million question (which is the value of Crown’s stamp collection): Will we see another moment like this today? This would have brought a touch of reconciliation and support from The Firm and would have made a sensational impression on the press.

(Let’s not philosophize so early, but what is a monarchy in the 21st century if not an outfit built on signs and signals? On optics and image?)

George and Charlotte

The past year has seen a very noticeable increase in the public appearances of William and Kate’s three young children. How much of this has to do with wanting to counteract the Sussexes’ message of toxic royalty, and how much simply because the kids are older? We have to park it in an unknown pile.

However, in the early hours of the AEDT, the Palace released an official funeral order confirming that Wales’ two oldest sons, Prince George, nine, and Princess Charlotte, seven, will attend and walk behind their great-grandmother’s casket. as part of an official procession. (Four-year-old Prince Louis, whose antics stole the show during the jubilee, was considered too young.)

Telegraph reported that William and Kate had “very carefully” considered including their children, with courtiers asking the couple to “consider bringing in Prince George because of the powerful message that would send.”

At the time of writing, it is unknown if George and Charlotte will take part in the official procession at Windsor later today.

Now, while the children have attended high-profile family events before, including Prince Philip’s thanksgiving service in March and taking part in the carriage procession during Trooping the Color this year, their participation today is an important step in their royal careers and in their lives. public life. How will they live? Never before had George and Charlotte attended an event of such magnitude that perhaps billions of people around the world would watch and watch live.

Faction question

In the middle of August daily mail Dan Wootton wrote an article claiming that “many lower-ranking members of the royal family are now openly rebelling against [Sussexes] – and prepared to express their feelings behind the palace walls.

“Noting this change in tone, even Harry’s former allies Zara Phillips and Mike Tindall are said to have been highly critical of the couple’s reserved, haughty and arrogant attitude during their last visit to the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee,” he wrote.

“Apart from the disgraced Prince Andrew, Fergie and his two daughters Eugenie and Beatrice, who have made extra efforts to stay close to Harry and Meghan, and the Queen herself, the couple’s allies in the family now do not exist.”

If so, will we see this dynamic during the funeral?

While the service is obviously a matter of state, the royal family may still have moments of spontaneous communication. Will there be any obvious division among the Queen’s grandchildren? Will we see this alleged faction situation today? Or will they be able to once again maintain their fragile united front?

Gambling Andrew

Today, the Duke of York is making his last appearance as a front-row player for the Royal Family, and that’s simply thanks to the fact that he was one of the Queen’s children. He won’t be, as we all know, in his military uniform (and neither is Harry), and his conspicuous black morning cloak will be a grim reminder of the dirtiest, mismanaged chapters in modern royal history.

In April 2021, after Philip’s death, we saw Andrew give a TV interview about his father’s passing, giving rise to claims that he capitalized on the moment as a first step towards a comeback and reportedly caused irritation at the Palace. .

Then in March of that year, at the last minute, he accompanied his mother to her seat at Westminster Abbey for a memorial service for the duke.

Would Andrew be stupid or self-absorbed enough to try and stage something like this today?

Could he see this as the last moment to try to rehabilitate his damaged reputation? If it was anyone else, I’d say no, no one can be that self-serving… but with Andrew, all bets are off.

Unknown Fergie

The relationship between the queen and her second daughter-in-law has had more ups and downs than a medium-sized rollercoaster. Back in the 80s, the rowdy redhead is said to have immediately won over her future relatives with her cheerful personality and fun friendly hockey stick.

Early in her royal career, she really eclipsed the increasingly unhappy Diana, Princess of Wales, who struggled with mental health issues and a failing marriage. (“Fergie leaving De Flat?”, 1987 Vanity Fair asked the cover story).

But all of that soon turned sour when the Yorkes’ marriage fell apart and the Duchess began showing up in London with her, ahem, “financial adviser” John Bryan.

In August 1992, Fergie (now separated from Andrew) was staying at Balmoral when photos of her topless and Brian enthusiastically sucking her toes appeared on the front pages. She has since spoken publicly about having to go out for breakfast and face her mother-in-law’s icy displeasure before leaving the castle.

This will be the last time in many years that Fergie will receive a coveted invitation to Scotland and various homemade turmoils, near bankruptcies, forays into an American chain of home goods stores, Weight Watchers campaigns and being caught on camera trying to sell access to Andrey are all unlikely to please. her to the queen. (Philip couldn’t stand her, and this attitude reportedly did not waver.)

However, what really impressed Her Majesty was the way she and Andrew raised their daughters, Beatrice and Eugenie.

Over the past ten years, Fergie has made tentative returns to the fold, including appearing with her family at Royal Ascot and participating in York’s trips to Balmoral, although Philip was not around.

So, given this complicated history, given that her former son-in-law King Charles can barely stand her, and given that this is a state event, will she be there? Will she make her final appearance with the royal family, given her connection to Her Majesty?

(The Duchess was not invited to the wedding of the Prince and Princess of Wales in 2011, but was invited to the union of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex in 2018).

Keep for updates.

Daniela Elzer is a writer and royal expert with over 15 years of experience working with some of the leading Australian media.

#Queen #Elizabeths #funeral #royal #service

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