Queen Elizabeth’s coffin leaves Scotland accompanied by Princess Anne | Queen Elizabeth II

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Scotland mentioned its closing goodbye to the Queen in robust autumn sunshine, as her coffin started its journey to London escorted by daughter Princess Anne.

Earlier than the Queen’s coffin was carried out of St Giles’ Cathedral to a rising ripple of applause from onlookers by troopers of the Royal Regiment of Scotland on Tuesday, a lone piper enjoying the Flowers of the Forest could possibly be heard from inside its precincts, the place the Queen had lain at relaxation for just a little over a day.

Exterior, two ranks of the Royal Firm of Archers, the monarch’s honour guard in Scotland, saluted, with their two requirements lowered to the stone setts within the cathedral’s sq..

Earlier than the coffin was lowered into the hearse, the Princess Royal had taken half in a brief non-public service attended by Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s first minister; Alister Jack, the UK authorities’s Scotland secretary; and Alison Johnstone, the Scottish parliament’s presiding officer.

The temporary ceremony introduced an finish to an unprecedented six-day farewell by Scots to the UK’s longest serving monarch, who had died at Balmoral in Royal Deeside on Thursday, with members of her household at her aspect.

With members of the general public lining the path to Edinburgh airport, Princess Anne escorted the coffin to RAF Northolt after which onto Buckingham palace, the place it’s going to relaxation within the Bow Room in a single day on Tuesday. It’ll then lie in state at Westminster Corridor earlier than the Queen’s state funeral on 19 September.

Pallbearers from the Queen’s Color Squadron of the Royal Air Power carry the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped within the Royal Commonplace of Scotland, into an plane at Edinburgh airport. {Photograph}: WPA/Getty Photos

Tens of 1000’s of individuals had queued in Edinburgh, some for 5 hours or extra, to view the coffin because it lay lined by the royal customary of Scotland below the medieval cathedral’s arched roof, guarded around the clock by Royal Firm of Archers personnel, dressed of their customary darkish inexperienced uniforms, white gloves and caps carrying eagle feathers.

Daybreak Davidson, 48, who was one of many final folks to see the Queen mendacity at relaxation on Tuesday afternoon after travelling from Glenrothes, mentioned it had been a “surreal” expertise. “It might probably’t be the rest,” she mentioned. “It’s only a second in historical past. It was completely lovely.

“I like her service to the nation for 70 years, only a robust girl. I’m definitely not towards royalty however the Queen was a particular woman.”

Rev Dr Iain Greenshields, the moderator of the Church of Scotland, who had spent the weekend with the Queen at Balmoral simply earlier than she died, mentioned Scotland had proven its capability for restrained spectacle.

“With the Queen’s real fondness for Scotland, I feel she would have been completely delighted on the clear and dignified method Scots got here out to say farewell,” he mentioned.

“Greater than that, they have been making a press release about how essential to them she was. After we lose a mom or father it’s typically solely then we realise how elementary they have been to our lives and the identical is true of the Queen.”

Jayne Hopp, 53, who had travelled to Edinburgh from Peterborough for a good friend’s fiftieth birthday, mentioned as they neared St Giles’ the temper within the queue modified. There was an air of expectation.

“We’re stunned how we reacted to it,” she mentioned. “However I felt compelled. I felt if I didn’t do it, I’d be sorry.

“I typically really feel folks want issues to deliver them collectively notably with the issues happening on the planet. We’ve simply met some pretty folks within the queue. Persons are extra beneficiant in spirit when this stuff occur.”

Jo Williams, who was one of many first to see the Queen mendacity at relaxation in St Giles’ on Monday, drove to Edinburgh from Manchester and hurriedly needed to supply a alternative electrical wheelchair after her personal broke down, however mentioned the hassle was price it.

“There was numerous safety in fact however once you received inside it felt actually calm and dignified,” she mentioned. “I felt at relaxation but in addition emotional: it was like she was there.”

Greenshields mentioned the distinctive sequence of occasions the royal household and Scotland encountered with the Queen’s dying on Royal Deeside supplied a lesson concerning the social and political worth of permitting all elements of the UK to expertise momentous occasions.

Many well-wishers and mourners, together with those that gathered in massed ranks within the village of Ballater, closest to Balmoral, those that noticed the Queen’s funeral cortege course of 170 miles from Balmoral down Scotland’s east coast on Sunday, after which watched as King Charles III walked on foot behind his mom’s coffin on Monday, had famous how essential it was that Edinburgh was in a position to change into a counter-weight to the constantly London-centric focus of nice nationwide occasions.

“There lies a lesson not only for Scotland, however the north of England, Yorkshire, that if we’re to reach belonging collectively then every of us has to really feel valued,” he mentioned.

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