London— The coffin ofhas arrived back at Buckingham Palace, the Associated Press reported. Earlier Tuesday, the late monarch left Scotland for the final time.
A military C-17 Globemaster carrying the queen’s remains touched down Tuesday evening at RAF Northolt, an air force base in the west of London, about an hour after it left Edinburgh, Scotland, the Associated Press reported. The State Hearse carrying the coffin made its way through the rainy streets of London, where crowds of mourners lined up to pay their respects.
Earlier in the day, crowds filled Scotland’s capital toin person.
Hundreds of thousands are expected to wait hours for an opportunity to see the queen’s coffin later this week as it lies in state at Westminster Hall.
The casket earlier was taken from St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh, after it was carried in a solemn procession through the Scottish capital to hushed crowds.
At the airport, as the Royal Regiment of Scotland, in ceremonial kilts, looked on, a Royal Air Force bearer party carried the coffin slowly on board.
Teawas played as the plane taxied to the runway and the queen, who died at her beloved Balmoral home in the Highlands last week aged 96, left Scotland for the final time.
The late monarch will first be brought to Buckingham Palace for the night before being transported to Westminster Hall on Wednesday, where some well-wishers have been queuing for 24 hours already to bid farewell to Britain’s longest-serving sovereign.
Two women, Grace and Vanessa, said they had already taken their place in the line, waiting overnight to pay their respects a full day before the queen’s coffin was even due to arrive at Westminster.
“This morning, we went to the actual rehearsal of Her Majesty’s coffin going into Westminster Hall. It was heartbreaking, the solemnness of the occasion,” Grace told the BBC. “I think the whole nation is going to be heartbroken and in floods of tears. We were.”
“This is the way we want to pay respect to the queen, who has done a great service to the country and the commonwealth and the world,” Vanessa said.
The coffin will be transported by hearse to Buckingham Palace in the heart of the capital. On Wednesday, the queen’s coffin will be moved in a procession the short distance from the palace to Westminster Hall, where the late monarch will lie in state until her state funeral on Monday.
King Charles III, alongside his wife Camilla, the queen consort, were visiting Belfast, Northern Ireland on Tuesday. They will meet politicians and religious leaders and attend a service at St. Anne’s Cathedral before returning to London later in the day.
AFP contributed to this report.