British Airways scrap 100 flights to cut noise for Queen’s funeral

Customers booked on affected British Airways flights can choose alternative services or opt for a refund, an airline spokesman said, adding that no long-haul operations are among those canceled…reports Asian Lite News

British Airways will scrap 100 flights from its London Heathrow base on Monday and re-time others as the airport, airlines and air traffic controllers work to minimize noise during Queen Elizabeth II’s state funeral.

About 15 per cent of Heathrow’s schedule will be altered, according to the hub, with flights halted for various durations through the day.

There will be no aircraft movements for 30 minutes from 11.40 am and 12.10 pm to avoid disrupting a two-minute silence at the end of the funeral, and no arrivals for 35 minutes starting at 1.45 pm during the procession of the Queen’s hearse. Departures will be barred for 1 hour 40 minutes from 3.05 pm as the cortege approaches Windsor Castle for the former monarch’s interment, and limited until 9 pm while the service concludes.

Customers booked on affected British Airways flights can choose alternative services or opt for a refund, an airline spokesman said, adding that no long-haul operations are among those canceled.

Flights were impacted for about two hours Wednesday during the transfer of the Queen’s coffin from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall for her lying in state, with King Charles III walking behind. Heathrow will also ask passengers to observe a one-minute silence at 8 pm Sunday and show the funeral on screens in terminals on Monday, when non-essential shops will be closed.

“As a mark of respect for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on the day of her state funeral, we have reduced our schedule and re-timed some flights at Heathrow to ensure the skies are quiet at certain moments,” BA said.

Royal Guard faints

A video showing a Royal Guard standing close to the coffin of late British Queen Elizabeth II dramatically collapsed in front of crowds of mourners while standing motionless for hours at Westminster Hall has emerged on social media. The guard in question was standing at the foot of the late monarch’s casket, holding a ceremonial staff, when he suddenly fainted and fell forwards to the floor at around 1 am.

Two other police officials immediately rushed to his aid and live footage of the broadcast was interrupted while the guard was checked. A stretcher was quickly brought out, but the unknown soldier managed to stand up by himself.

After being handed back his hat and ceremonial staff that had dropped to the floor during his fall, he swiftly returned to his post. However, moments later he dramatically swayed again and was escorted away by three staff. The incident occurred as hundreds of thousands of mourners thronged the streets of London to pay homage to the late Queen.

Queen Elizabeth`s coffin draped in the Royal Standard is now lying in state in London`s Westminster Hall where it will remain for four days until her funeral on Monday. Borne on a gun carriage and accompanied by the boom of artillery cannons and the tolling of Big Ben`s bell, the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II was transported on Wednesday from Buckingham Palace to the Palace of Westminster, as per New York Post.

King Charles III, in full dress uniform and carrying a field marshal`s baton, walked behind the coffin, joined by his sister, Princess Anne, and their two brothers, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward. His elder son and heir, Prince William, newly named as the Prince of Wales, walked behind him, next to his brother, Prince Harry.

The cortege passed by the most familiar symbols of royal London, from Buckingham Palace to the wide, tree-lined vista of the Mall, then past government institutions on Whitehall and Downing Street, before arriving at Westminster Hall, the oldest part of the Parliamentary estate. Westminster Hall, which sits in the shadow of Big Ben, is one of the most hallowed places in British public life, as per the media portal.

The British Queen breathed her last at Balmoral Castle in Scotland on September 8. The death of the 96-year-old Queen ended a generation-spanning, seven-decade reign that made her a beacon of stability in a tumultuous world. The UK has entered a period of official mourning, with tributes pouring in worldwide.

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