As Britain grieves the death of Queen Elizabeth II, a host of world leaders, crowned heads and leading figures in Britain’s public life are set to attend her funeral next week.
Unlike the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral in 2021 – which was restricted to just 30 people – it is likely Westminster Abbey’s 2,000 capacity will be filled to honour Britain’s longest-reigning monarch.
The funeral congregation will be headed by the new King Charles III and Queen consort Camilla, while William, Prince of Wales, and Catherine, Princess of Wales, will follow closely.
The Queen’s other three children, Princess Anne and her husband Timothy Laurence, Prince Andrew, and Princess Edward and his wife Sophie, Countess of Wessex, will also be among the chief mourners.
It is expected all eight of the Queen’s grandchildren will be present, including Prince Harry and his wife Meghan, Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Peter Phillips, Zara Tindall and her husband Mike Tindall, Princess Beatrice and her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, Princess Eugenie and her spouse Jack Brooksbank, Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn.
The Queen’s nephew Lord Snowdon and niece Lady Sarah Chatto and her husband Daniel Chatto are also anticipated to be there.
Princess Anne (right) and her husband Vice Admiral Timothy Laurence stand solemnly as the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped with the Royal Standard of Scotland, completes its journey from Balmoral to the Palace of Holyroodhouse
The Queen’s funeral next Monday will be led By King Charles II as chief mourner (pictured with Queen consort Camilla)
US President Joe Biden has confirmed he will attend the Queen’s funeral alongside First Lady Jill Biden
Britain’s Prime Minister Liz Truss will attend the service, alongside a host of former Prime Ministers and the leader of the opposition Sir Keir Starmer
New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern (pictured) has been confirmed as one of the attendees of The Queen’s funeral next week
The Queen’s funeral service at Westminster Abbey (pictured) may well fill out the abbey’s 2,000 capacity for 2,000 people
The Queen and Prince Philip with their great-grandchildren, from left, George, Louis, Charlotte, Savannah Phillips, Isla Phillips, Lena Tindall and Mia Tindall. This picture was taken by the Princess of Wales in 2018
Catherine, Princess of Wales, Prince William, Prince of Wales, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex on the long Walk at Windsor Castle on Saturday
The Earl and Countess of Wessex will both be attending the Queen’s funeral
James Viscount Severn (left) and Lady Louise Windsor (right), the Earl and Countess of Wessex’s children, will both be going
Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank (left) and Princess Beatrice and Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi (right) will all be at the funeral
Peter Phillips (left) and Zara Tindall and Mike Tindall (right) are expected to be attending the service
Daniel Chatto (left) and Lady Sarah Chatto (right)
The Queen’s cousin Princess Alexandra was one of the 30 members of the Royal Family who attended the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral in 2020 and will likely attend the Queen’s funeral at Westminster Abbey next Monday
Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence (left) and the Earl of Snowdon (right)
The Duke of Kent (left) and Duke of Gloucester (right)
Lady Pamela Hicks, 93, younger daughter of Lord Mountbatten, is also expected to attend the Queen’s funeral
The Queen with her lady-in-waiting Lady Susan Hussey (pictured together in 2016) who she knew for over six decades
The Queen’s dresser Angela Kelly who has been assured of a lifetime grace and favour home on the Windsor estate, will also be there
Each of the Queen’s paternal cousins will likely be there, including Prince Edward and his wife Katharine, Duke and Duchess of Kent, Prince and Princess Michael of Kent, Princess Alexandra, and Prince Richard and his wife Birgitte, Duke and Duchess of Gloucester.
Lady Pamela Hicks, 93, daughter of Lord Mountbatten, and her niece Penelope Knatchbull, Countess of Burma, are highly likely to be in attendance, as are the Queen’s ladies in waiting Lady Susan Hussey, Dame Mary Morrison, Lady Elizabeth Leeming and Susan Rhodes. The Queen’s dresser Angela Kelly, who has been assured of a lifetime grace and favour home on the Windsor estate, will also be there.
Several German relatives of Prince Phillip, who attended his small funeral gathering in 2021, may also be present including Bernhard, Hereditary Prince of Baden, Donatus, Landgrave of Hesse, and Philipp, Prince of Hohenlohe-Langenburg.
World leaders including US President Joe Biden, European Commission President Ursula Von Der Leyen and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden are among those confirmed to attend the Queen’s funeral next week.
German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has confirmed he will attend, as has Italian President Sergio Mattarella, France’s Emmanuel Macron, Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro and South Korea’s Yoon Suk-yeol.
The Foreign Office has advised world leaders to travel by commercial airline, and not by private jet or helicopter, in order not to overwhelm the runways of London’s airports.
Britain’s Prime Minister Liz Truss and leader of the opposition Keir Starmer will appear among the Queen’s mourners, and an invitation is likely to be extended to former Prime Ministers Boris Johnson, Theresa May, David Cameron, Gordon Brown, Tony Blair and Sir John Major.
Ex-US Presidents including Barack Obama, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton may also be expected to make an appearance. It has already been confirmed Donald Trump will not attend the service.
Throughout her life, the Queen maintained close relations with the other European crowned heads of state – many of whom were her second or third cousins through shared descent from Queen Victoria.
Denmark’s Queen Margrethe II, 81, described as a close friend of the late Queen and now Europe’s longest-reigning monarch celebrating her 50th Jubilee – will almost certainly be prominent among them, as will Spain’s King Felipe IV and Queen Letizia.
Denmark’s Queen Margrethe II, 81, described as a close friend of the late Queen and now Europe’s longest-reigning monarch celebrating her 50th Jubilee – will almost certainly be prominent among the European heads of state
King Felipe VI of Spain has paid tribute to a ‘dutiful’ Queen in a letter of condolence to King Charles III (Pictured: Prince Philip, Queen Letizia, Queen Elizabeth II and King Felipe VI of Spain just before a state banquet at Buckingham Palace in July 2017)
King Carl XVI Gustav and Queen Silvia of Sweden are highly likely to be among the mourners at the Queen’s funeral
King Harald V of Norway (right) is pictured with Queen Sonja (left) at a museum in Oslo on June 16, 2022
King Philippe of Belgium and his wife Queen Mathilde are highly likely to attend the Queen’s funeral next week
Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Theresa of Luxembourg
Japan’s Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako pictured in Tokyo shortly after his enthronement in November 2019
Monarchs likely to be in attendance at the Queen’s funeral include King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium, King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia of Sweden, King Harald V and Queen Sonja of Norway, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, Grand Duke Henri and Grand Duchess Maria Theresa of Luxembourg, and Prince Albert II and Princess Charlene of Monaco.
Other possible guests are Beatrix, former Queen of the Netherlands who abdicated in 2013, and the former King Constantine II and Queen Anne-Marie of Greece – who was deposed in 1973.
Outside of Europe, Japan’s Emperor Naruhito may well travel to London alongside Empress Masako and Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
The funeral, and the surrounding events, are set to become one of the biggest events in Britain since the Olympics, with an estimated 2 million people flooding to central London every day.
It will also be a major diplomatic event, with scores of world leaders, many of whom developed strong relationships with the Queen over her long reign, attending the funeral.
They will be able to pay respects at her coffin, which will lie in state in Westminster Hall from Wednesday evening, and sign a book of condolences at Lancaster House.
King Charles III will also host a reception for overseas leaders at Buckingham Palace on Sunday evening.
After the funeral service the following day, Foreign Secretary James Cleverly will host a reception for political leaders in Dean’s Yard, in the grounds of the abbey, after which they will return by coach to west London to collect their cars.
The vast influx has forced the Foreign Office to encourage leaders to use commercial flights, warning that Heathrow is ‘not available for private flight arrangements or aircraft parking’.
Those that insist on travelling by private jet should head for ‘less busy airports’ around London, it added.
Helicopter transfers between airports and venues have been banned ‘due to the number of flights operating at this time’.