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Heartbroken Americans flock to NYC English pub to mourn death of Queen Elizabeth

A gloomy crowd of Americans and tourists has gathered at an English pub in New York City to celebrate the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

The Churchill Tavern in Midtown Manhattan also saw flowers and a British bulldog arrive, carrying a sign that read ‘Long live the Queen, Queen Elizabeth RIP’.

All visitors said the Queen’s death felt extremely strange and that she had done an exceptional job during her 70-year reign of the United Kingdom.

But there was division about what to do next; some said that Charles – now crowned king after his mother’s death – should step aside in favor of his son William.

Others were happy to follow the strict rules of succession, with Charles’ wife Camilla being crowned queen consort.

And troubling for the scandal-plagued royals, there was already discussion about the future of the Commonwealth.

An Australian DailyMail.com speaking said a referendum on breaking away from the royal family now seems a certainty.

The Empire State Building has announced it will be lit up in purple and silver on Thursday evening to pay tribute to Queen Elizabeth II, who passed away on Thursday.

The Empire State Building has announced it will be lit up in purple and silver on Thursday evening to pay tribute to Queen Elizabeth II, who passed away on Thursday.

Britons and tourists alike gathered at The Churchill Tavern in New York for comfort at the news of the monarch's passing.  These two visitors raised a glass to the Queen's illustrious 70-year reign

Britons and tourists alike gathered at The Churchill Tavern in New York for comfort at the news of the monarch's passing.  These two visitors raised a glass to the Queen's illustrious 70-year reign

Britons and tourists alike gathered at The Churchill Tavern in New York for comfort at the news of the monarch’s passing. These two visitors raised a glass to the Queen’s illustrious 70-year reign

A British bulldog was pictured near a plastic beefeater statue outside the Windsor Tavern, next to a bouquet left to pay tribute to the late monarch

A British bulldog was pictured near a plastic beefeater statue outside the Windsor Tavern, next to a bouquet left to pay tribute to the late monarch

A British bulldog was pictured near a plastic beefeater statue outside the Windsor Tavern, next to a bouquet left to pay tribute to the late monarch

The Churchill left a bouquet of red roses outside to pay tribute to the Queen after owner Scott Robertson couldn't find any white lilies

The Churchill left a bouquet of red roses outside to pay tribute to the Queen after owner Scott Robertson couldn't find any white lilies

The Churchill left a bouquet of red roses outside to pay tribute to the Queen after owner Scott Robertson couldn’t find any white lilies

Rhianne Humble, a 34-year-old British woman in New York, said she sobbed when she heard the news.

She told DailyMail.com: “I cried when I heard it, I also cried when I saw the Paddington tweet that touched me.

“I left work to come here right away because you just need some time to process it.

“She was an incredible woman, a fantastic role model for women and she will be missed.

“I’ve had American friends ask me if I’m okay and offer my condolences and I think that’s a good thing.

“She was an amazing woman, and it’s really devastating.”

Pub owner Scott Robertson, a British expatriate, said he was overwhelmed by the news.

The 49-year-old said: “When I heard I shed a tear, she’s the one who’s been around all our lives.

“We’ve been busy, we got an idea when we heard about it, and we’re going to do something for the funeral.

‘We were founded in 2011, chose the name because the leader (Winston Churchill) was.

A drinker sat at the bar and watched a TV broadcasting Britain's Sky News, which showed general coverage of the Queen's death

A drinker sat at the bar and watched a TV broadcasting Britain's Sky News, which showed general coverage of the Queen's death

A drinker sat at the bar and watched a TV broadcasting Britain’s Sky News, which showed general coverage of the Queen’s death

“They were good friends, the Queen and Winston. Great leaders.

“We covered all the big events, the wedding, the anniversary everything.

‘I’m from Stoke-on-Trent and I have fond memories of her opening the gardens there.

‘We put down red roses because they are English. I wanted to get lilies because they were her favorites, but I couldn’t.

‘It will be interesting to see Charles as king, but personally I would prefer William.

“When you see all this, the community, how big the English community is in New York and what I think we do as Brits, we all like to get together and have a pint, that’s what we do.”

Deanna Clow, 31, is from New York but said she felt “affinity” with the UK and wanted to celebrate the Queen’s death among the late monarch’s compatriots.

She explained: “When you grow up, you hear about princesses and royalty.

‘Of course we don’t have the monarchy or anything like that, but we have an affinity with Britain.

“When Princess Diana died there were people in the streets in tears, and I think this is the first British person to die at that level.

“Obviously we don’t have the same level of emotion, but it’s sad and we want to support the British in every way we can.

A model of a queen guard in a black bearskin hat sits in front of a sandwich sign marking the queen's death at age 96

A model of a queen guard in a black bearskin hat sits in front of a sandwich sign marking the queen's death at age 96

A model of a queen guard in a black bearskin hat sits in front of a sandwich sign marking the queen’s death at age 96

The other side of the board was decorated with a cheerier message, congratulating the queen's successor, King Charles III, when his reign begins.

The other side of the board was decorated with a cheerier message, congratulating the queen's successor, King Charles III, when his reign begins.

The other side of the board was decorated with a cheerier message, congratulating the queen’s successor, King Charles III, when his reign begins.

“She was an amazing woman, we always saw royalty growing up in movies, but this was real life.

“America is grieving with the UK.”

Rob Fisbourne, 58, is a Houston-based Brit who sought comfort from his fellow Englishmen at the news of the Queen’s death.

He said: ‘Consolation the British all come together, in times of adversity and that is what is happening now.

“I got a lump in my throat when I heard what had happened. It’s the end of an era.

“We have to give Charles a chance. His mother was an incredible woman and he has some very forward thinking ideas.

“We came here anyway, but I’m glad we did. It’s good to be somewhere where we can keep an eye on the news.

“She’s all we knew and she was just an amazing woman.”

A portrait of Queen Elizabeth as a younger woman was decorated with a union flag to mark her death

A portrait of Queen Elizabeth as a younger woman was decorated with a union flag to mark her death

A portrait of Queen Elizabeth as a younger woman was decorated with a union flag to mark her death

Londoner William Hardman’s emotion was etched on his face. The 21-year-old said: ‘I shed a tear, I woke up to hear that the Queen had died and I think it’s fair to say I cried and was upset when I heard it.

“I don’t think Americans understand exactly what happened, they don’t have a monarchy, so that’s why we came to a British pub.

‘I would like Charles to be king, because I respect the manner of succession. But if you had a choice, I’d have William.

“No one I know has known anything but Elizabeth, except my grandmother.”

A couple named Paula and Ettie, from Hove in England, said they had made a pilgrimage to the pub when they learned of the Queen’s death.

They explained: ‘We are here for a two week holiday to the UK.

‘We came here specially, we had been to the Empire State Building and we checked the BBC when we got out and decided to go to a British bar.

“It’s something we’ll be glued to when we get back, the coronation and the funeral.

‘It’s the end of an era, no one has known anything but Elizabeth.

“Charles has a lot of good ideas about the environment, but I think it’s time for a change in the monarchy, then they need to make changes.”

Neither of them commented on what changes they would like to see.

“It’s very sad, we were very upset when we heard the news,” she added.

“We were at the last garden party she had, it was great to meet and see her.

‘She is the queen, and it will be strange to say the king.

“I want to keep all the pomp and circumstance, but other things have to change.”

Henry Bishop, 21, of London said he had met the Queen as a member of a choir in Windsor, the site of one of her primary residences.

A man sitting at the bar appeared to be reading a satirical tale about the royal family, featuring the new monarch King Charles III

A man sitting at the bar appeared to be reading a satirical tale about the royal family, featuring the new monarch King Charles III

A man sitting at the bar appeared to be reading a satirical tale about the royal family, featuring the new monarch King Charles III

He explained: “It’s very sad of course, we came right here as soon as we found out because we wanted to be closer to her.

“It’s what Liz would have wanted us to come here. And we wanted to offer her a drink.

“Personally, I’d like William to take the reins, but it’s not up to me.

‘I saw her when I sang every now and then, we went to the school nearby.

“I spoke to her, only to say nothing in-depth, but it was fun.

“For me, I’ve never known anything but her, and it will be a strange change.”

Meanwhile, 22-year-old Melbourne-based Will Harris said he foresaw the end of formal ties between the royal family and the Australian government.

Harris said, “I walked here specifically to see the coverage, to find a British bar.

“I think for us it means a change, we would have a referendum on change anyway and this should bring it up.

“The change from the Queen to Charles is a definite change for us, changes should be coming now.

“Obviously it’s the end of an era, but there are things that mark this for the Commonwealth.

“She wasn’t a problem herself, but there are other problems within the monarchy and around it that need to be addressed.”

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