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Queues at Queen Mother vault

At Windsor
The Queen Mother's coffin arrives at Windsor prior to the committal  


LONDON, England -- Several hundred mourners queued on Wednesday to see the Queen Mother's final resting place in St George's chapel at Windsor Castle.

The body of the Queen Mother was laid to rest alongside her late husband King George VI at a private committal service on Tuesday night.

The ashes of their daughter, Princess Margaret, who died two months ago, were also placed in the tomb in the George VI Memorial Chapel, a small recess off the main chapel.

Four wreaths had been laid around an altar by senior members of the royal family. A wreath of white roses from Princes William and Harry, and a wreath of flowers picked from Prince Charles' garden at his Highgrove Estate, surrounded the altar on the floor.

Princess Margaret's children, Lady Sarah Chatto and Viscount Linley, also left wreaths of pink and red carnations.

All the flowers bore cards carrying personal messages from the grieving members of the royal family. They lay inches away from the black marble gravestone, which had been removed by stonemasons but was now back in place.

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It originally read simply King George VI, but now the years of his birth and death, 1895-1952, have been added.

Underneath it reads simply: "Elizabeth 1900-2002."

Chapel officials said that a bronze plaque will be fixed at a later date to the chapel wall to commemorate Princess Margaret.

The chapel vault also holds the remains of Henry VIII, Charles I, George III, Edward VII and George V.

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Mourners gather at Westminster Abbey to pay final respects to the Queen Mother Castle (April 9)

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Queen Mother
1900~2002

  

A bouquet of the Queen Mother's favourite flowers had been arranged by a gardener in a vase behind the altar. It included pink orchids and white camellias picked from her garden at the Royal Lodge within the castle grounds.

Prince Charles, seen at the funeral to be deeply upset at the death of his grandmother, flew to Scotland after Tuesday's committal.

He is to spend time at Birkhall, the Queen Mother's private home on the fringe of Balmoral on Royal Deeside.

The 53-year-old prince, who fulfilled a personal pledge to his grandmother by accompanying the hearse from Westminster to Windsor, 26 miles west of London, will spend at least a week at Birkhall resting and reflecting.

His companion Camilla Parker Bowles is expected to join him for some of the time.

Extraordinary scenes on Tuesday saw a million people line the route of the Queen Mother's coffin for her final journey to Windsor. (Full story)

It was estimated that, around the world, another 200 million people watched the day's sombre but spectacular proceedings on TV. (More on the proceedings)

At the Westminster Abbey service, the Archbishop of Canterbury led tributes to the "deeply loved and greatly missed" royal great-grandmother.

"Strength, dignity and laughter -- three great gifts which we honour and celebrate today," Dr George Carey told 2,100 mourners including royalty and VIPs from all over the world. (Sermon in full)

U.S. First Lady Laura Bush, who attended the ceremony, said afterwards: "The Queen Mother was noble in every sense of the word.

"President Bush and I extend the condolences of the American people to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, her family and the people of the United Kingdom, and we join them in remembering the Queen Mother's life and legacy."

The service was led by the Archbishops of Canterbury and York and the Roman Catholic Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor. (Readings and hymns)

Factories and offices across the UK came to a standstill for two minutes' of silence at 11:30 a.m. (1030 GMT) as workers joined the nation's mourning. (Full story)

Many stores shut for the morning or for the full day. Other firms told staff not to sell any goods or services during the period of silence.(Your thoughts and tributes)



 
 
 
 






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