Queen Elizabeth funeral steeds to carry decades of symbolism
Monday’s funeral for Queen Elizabeth II will likely be fraught with symbolism — proper right down to the horses.
The 4 steeds chosen to guide the Queen’s coffin procession because it leaves Westminster Abbey have been all gifted to her by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, embodying a decades-long bond between the horse-mad monarch and the commonwealth member’s well-known Mounties.
The Mountie-trained animals — George, Elizabeth, Darby and Sir John — are the newest in an extended line of Canadian horses ridden by senior royals, together with King Charles and Princess Anne, throughout Trooping the Coloration, the annual parade marking their mom’s official birthday.
“The connection with Her Majesty is sort of private,” the RCMP’s Sergeant Main Scott Williamson informed the Sunday Occasions of London. “We’re on a no-fail mission.”
The Queen, who served as honorary commissioner of the Mounties, obtained her first horse from the service in 1969. Burmese, a seven-year-old black mare, quickly turn out to be her favourite mount.
She rode Burmese at Trooping the Coloration for 18 years — and was in her saddle in 1981 when a disturbed spectator brought about chaos by taking pictures six clean rounds within the Queen’s route. The mare remained calm, because of her earlier publicity to gunfire.
The 4 Canadian horses will lead a complete of 199 army equines in Monday’s funeral: 102 within the central London procession from Westminster Corridor to Wellington Arch, and one other 97 in a caravan to St George’s Chapel at Windsor Citadel, the place the queen will likely be laid to relaxation.
“The horses are an unequivocally necessary a part of that,” mentioned Capt. Catherine Russell, the fleet’s ceremonial coordinator. “We need to make her proud.”