What To Know While Visiting London For Queen Elizabeth II Funeral
People will be traveling to view Queen Elizabeth II laying in state at Westminster Hall during the next week, as well as to take part in public events and ceremonial ceremonies. This will cause London to grow more crowded over the course of the next week. There have already been reports of an increase in accommodation prices, delays in public transportation, and the cancellation of events; thus, travelers are encouraged to make advance travel plans before heading to the capital.
Here is some information that you should be aware of in the event that you are one of those persons or if you find yourself in London or anywhere else in the United Kingdom during this historically significant period.
Is it simple to locate suitable lodgings?
Beginning on Wednesday, September 14, the city of London is anticipating “record travel demand” due to the fact that more than one million people are anticipated to make their way to the capital for the ceremonial celebrations. If you haven’t already made arrangements for lodging, you should anticipate paying a high amount for a hotel. The Guardian reports that costs have reached an all-time high since the Olympics in 2012, and that some hotels have raised their rates by more than 300 percent.
Are there any museums, restaurants, or stores that are open?
The United Kingdom is currently in the midst of a period of national mourning that will last for ten days and end on September 19, but the majority of locations will continue operating as normal over the next few days after the government issued a statement confirming that “there is no obligation on organizations to suspend business.” Having said that, it is a good idea to check ahead of time to make sure that the opening hours have not altered, particularly when going to a cultural facility such as a museum or gallery. The Royal Collection Trust, which is responsible for the management of royal estates and attractions, has decided to shut all six of its locations for the length of the time of mourning. In addition, visitors won’t be able to access Westminster Abbey until the 21st of September.
On the day that the state funeral is held, which is Monday, September 19, you’ll discover that almost all businesses, including some grocery stores and vacation resorts like Center Parcs, close their doors, bringing the whole nation to a virtual stop. Appointments scheduled on the same day are being canceled even by the National Health Service (NHS).
Will there be a postponement of the events?
Yes. If you are planning to go to the United Kingdom for a specific event that is not tied to the death of the Queen, it is likely that your plans will not proceed as expected. On the weekend of September 17 and 18, there will be no significant athletic events of any kind taking place. In addition, all of the main events, including as film festivals and Pride festivities, have either been significantly cut down or completely canceled.
Because it’s possible that people’s schedules will continue to shift during the next several days, it’s a good idea to double check that your plans haven’t been altered before heading out anyplace.
Will trains run? Can I anticipate travel disruptions?
It is anticipated that travel will be disrupted all around the UK, but mainly in London and Edinburgh since those are the cities where the majority of the formal ceremonial preparations will be taking place. As visitors make their way to Buckingham Palace to pay their respects to the queen, there will be access limitations in place in some sections of the city center in London. “We anticipate enormous crowds, which might pose concerns to public safety,” the administration warned in an earlier statement. “We expect large crowds.”
The widespread strike action that was scheduled to take place across rail networks in September has been called off; nevertheless, passengers can still anticipate disruptions to their train and bus schedules during the month of mourning. According to a statement that was made jointly by Network Rail and Transport for London on Tuesday, early trip planning “will be important.” [Citation needed] According to them, London will be “very crowded,” and as a result, certain tube stations may have to temporarily lock their doors in order to prevent further congestion.
According to the statement sent by the train firms, “We will experience travel demand in the capital that is unparalleled, particularly beginning on Wednesday, September 14.” “Transportation companies have carefully crafted strategies, and more personnel and services will soon be available, in order to assist individuals in getting to where they need to go,”
Green Park station, which is the closest one to Buckingham Palace, is asked to be avoided by passengers of the London Underground due to the “high numbers of customers passing through.” Instead, passengers are encouraged to utilize one of the other nearby options, such as Victoria, Piccadilly Circus, or St. James’ Park.
There shouldn’t be any disruptions to airports or flight schedules, but there may be delays on trains and buses leading to and from London’s airports, as well as increased passenger volume.
What are the ways that I may take part in the commemorations?
On the tenth day of mourning, which is Monday, September 19, the state funeral will take place at Westminster Abbey in London. But before that happens, people all around the UK will have the opportunity to commemorate the queen at a variety of activities and gatherings.
How to get inside Westminster Hall to see the Queen when she is laying in state in London
The casket of the monarch is scheduled to be flown to London on Tuesday evening, when it will initially be brought to Buckingham Palace, which served as the monarch’s residence for many years. It is anticipated that the coffin will be taken in a procession on a gun carriage on Wednesday from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall, the oldest building at the Houses of Parliament, where it will lie in state for five days, until the nation holds a minute’s silence on Sunday, September 18 at 8pm. This event will take place at 8 o’clock in the evening.
It is anticipated that no roads in central London would be open to traffic, and that the people will be allowed to stand along the path. Over three quarters of a million people are anticipated to pass past the coffin, which will be sealed and put on top of an elevated platform known as a catafalque. The Hall will be available to the public for twenty-four hours every day.
Anyone wishing to visit Parliament in the United Kingdom was given the following piece of advice by the British government: “You will need to stand for several hours, maybe overnight, since the line will keep moving.” People have been advised to think twice about bringing small children because of the lengthy wait periods that are anticipated, as well as to bring their own food, water, and any medications that they may need.
Before entering Westminster Hall, guests will be subjected to a screening process similar to that of an airport, and at this time, they will not be allowed to bring in any liquids. Those who intend to attend have been instructed to dress accordingly, and photography is not permitted once they are inside the building. No one who is trying to enter while wearing clothing that is excessively branded or covered with commercial messages will be let in. The bag-drop facility does accept larger bags, however there is a limited amount of space available for their storage.
There will be a “due course” publication of information about the state funeral.
Where is it that I may leave the flowers?
Since her demise, Buckingham Palace has become a popular gathering place for people from all over the world. Any flowers that were left at the gates of the Palace are being transported to Hyde Park, which is close, as well as the Green Park Floral Tribute Garden, which is becoming a meeting place for tourists.
What exactly happened at King Charles’s coronation?
That happening won’t take place for at least a few more months. It’s quite unlikely that it will take place even this year. The coronation of Queen Elizabeth II took place 16 months after her succession in 1953; thus, it is possible that the coronation of her son will take some time as well. Even though there is now a crisis in the cost of living, it is probable that this will be a large event with lots of pomp, pageantry, and antiquated customs. The specifics have not been made public just yet, but it is likely that this will be the case.
How do I initiate a conversation about the Queen with those who live in the UK?
This is going to be an extraordinary few days to be in the United Kingdom, despite the fact that there isn’t a consensus on anything in the UK (something that even a cursory scan of the polarized world of social media will reveal), and despite the fact that there isn’t a universal feeling about anything. People will take part in new experiences that are shared, and visitors will feel like they are a part of something special. You can anticipate nonstop media coverage of the preparations being made for the queen’s burial, as well as experts dissecting the legacy of the queen and what the future holds for the monarchy.
Keep in mind that in the modern United Kingdom, the royal family is seen as a symbol of many things, including tradition, privilege, and of course, colonialism. It is not necessary to avoid discussing the passing of the queen while interacting with other people, but on the other hand, no one will anticipate receiving condolences for her loss. Away from royal hotspots like Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, which will be bustling and covered with floral tributes, the people of the United Kingdom will (for the most part) maintain their composure and go about their daily lives. The majority of people are more concerned with their monthly energy bills and the rate of inflation than they are with debating constitutional issues.