Elizabeth II’s funeral: “I stayed five minutes in front of the coffin, it was magical”

Elizabeth II’s funeral: “I stayed five minutes in front of the coffin, it was magical”

Fanny Rabasse of Equeurdreville-Hainneville (here on the ‘Britannia’ in Edinburgh, in 2018) went to pay her last respects to Elizabeth II. (©DP)

Equeurdrevillaise Fanny Rabasse he is passionate about the royal family and the monarchy. So much so that this admirerElizabeth II went to Edinburgh collect. Here is his testimony.


News: You are a great admirer of the monarchy and the royal family. Did you manage to travel to the UK for the Queen’s funeral?

Fanny Rabasse: I went to Edinburgh from Sunday 11th September to Wednesday 14th September, three nights in total. I was able to participate in the casket procession in the street that went up to Saint-Gilles Cathedral. Then I tried to queue for the first time from 9pm to midnight but it was extremely cold and we were told to wait another four hours. I returned to the hotel with a heavy heart.

So you couldn’t get close to Elizabeth II’s coffin?

FR: I couldn’t sleep and at 4 in the morning I thought to myself that it is impossible to stay there. I came here on purpose. I covered myself and left at night to finally find myself in front of the casket at 5:30 in the morning.

What state of mind were you in at the time?

FR: I won’t hide from you that it was a little strange. We walked through the streets of old Edinburgh and I don’t know if it was because it was dark, but there was an incredible atmosphere. There was no noise, people were not talking. And after the security checks, as I entered the cathedral, something happened that I thought was a bit of a sign, even though I don’t really believe in such things: when I arrived at the coffin level, I was able to witness the changing of the four guards who had been watching the Queen. So I was left alone in front of the casket for five minutes, it was magical.

So you were privileged among the privileged…

FR: Yes, it was a moment that seemed short and long at the same time, but it allowed me to realize my dream as a little girl. I, little Équeurdrevillaise, who dreamed in front of the books about the monarchy in her parents’ house, who would find herself in front of the coffin of the Queen of England… Emotionally it was very strong and it was when I left I started to cry, maybe even a little tired. But I could meditate, I always said I would bow before his casket, and I did.

Have you decided not to travel to London for the funeral?

FR: I chose Edinburgh because I have a lot of friends there and I was right because I only queued for 4 hours in total and the cathedral was smaller so I was much closer to the casket, it was more solemn. Also, I happened to be at the airport at the same time as the Queen on Tuesday night in Edinburgh and was able to see the plane take off, which was not planned, so I missed my flight and didn’t fly out until Wednesday morning. Around me, first me, everyone started crying, there was also a minute of silence.

Do you think that the death of Elizabeth II. Have you lost a loved one?

FR: I won’t say I feel like I’ve lost a family member or a friend, but I’ve gotten a lot of messages. People knew he was a part of my life and my family lived it through me. I was lucky enough to be invited to two garden parties at Buckingham Palace and Holyrood.

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You watched the funeral on TV. Did you expect something so spectacular?

FR: Yes, because it is the strength of the British monarchy. It is something noble that has been repeated, there is nothing wrong with it.

King Charles III succeeds his mother. How do you perceive his accession to the throne?

FR: I think it will be different, but in Edinburgh I saw the enthusiasm for him. I saw people shouting “Long live the king!” “. It was the same with Queen Victoria, her son, King Edward VII, was Prince of Wales for years and was a very good Entente Cordiale King. So I think Charles will be a beloved King, although of course I will miss the Queen.

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