Royals have coffins made while still alive with Queen’s lead-lined one made 30 years ago

Mourners are seeing it for the first time this week, but The Queen's lead-lined coffin was actually made more than 30 years ago.

The coffin, which arrives in London on Tuesday as it continues its journey from Balmoral, is constructed from English oak and lined with lead.

This is a traditional design choice of the Royal Family as the use of lead helps to preserve the body longer by making the coffin airtight and stopping moisture from building up. With the coffin placed in a vault rather than buried underground, the lead has an important role.

According to The Telegraph the Queen's coffin was made three decades ago, along with a matching one for her late husband Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh.

The concept of lead lining can be traced back to the Victorian era, when protecting bodies in an airtight coffin was necessary to protect bodies when they are laid to rest above ground.

It means the Queen's coffin, which is draped in the Royal Standard, is very heavy and will require eight pallbearers, rather than the usual six.

After remaining at St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh overnight, the coffin will arrive at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday night ahead of the Queen's state funeral on 19 September.

It will stay in the Bow Room overnight before a procession to Westminster Hall on Wednesday for the start of the lying in state.

The Crown of Scotland sits on top of the coffin and once it reaches the Palace of Westminster, the Sovereign's orb and sceptre will also be laid on it.

Her Majesty's final resting place will be the King George VI memorial chapel in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle, where her mother and father are buried along with the ashes of her sister, Princess Margaret.

After the funeral service, the coffin will be taken in procession from Westminster Abbey to Wellington Arch and then travel to Windsor.

Prince Philip, along with many other members of the royal family, are buried in the royal vault at St George's Chapel.

The late Duke of Edinburgh will be relocated to the King George VI chapel to lie with the Queen.

The Queen will lie in state in Westminster Hall for four days ahead of her funeral.

Members of the public will be able to file past the coffin and pay their respects from 5pm on Wednesday until 6.30am on Monday 19 September.

Westminster Hall will be open for 23 hours a day for the lying-in-state period, closing only between 2.46am and 3.46am.

Mourners in Edinburgh have had the opportunity to visit the coffin at St Giles' Cathedral following a procession from the Palace of Holyroodhouse and a service of thanksgiving for her life on Monday.

People will be able to pay their respects until 3pm on Tuesday, before the coffin is transported to an RAF plane to be flown to London.


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