“I think it’s quite a mark of respect, the amount of people that are committed to being patient and queuing,” one volunteer queue steward told BuzzFeed News of the massive line. “Even if it rained, I think they’d still be here.”
Kate Fryer, a National Health Service worker who traveled from Kent, braved the queue for five hours on her own and with a bad hip.
The 44-year-old, who was supported with a walking stick, commended the organizers for making the grueling process as accessible as possible for those with mobility issues.
“They’ve been so good. It’s so well organized,” she told BuzzFeed News.
When they reach the end of the line, mourners enter the solemn scene at Westminster Hall, where the Queen’s coffin is lying in state, surrounded by ceremonial guards with a glittering crown lying on top.
A livestream from the BBC shows those queuing silently stopping beside the coffin. Some bow, some cry, but all feel a sense of history that seems hard to describe for those in line.