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Queen Elizabeth II’s State Funeral Cost the UK Government £161.743 Million

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LONDON, UK – The United Kingdom government spent a staggering £161.743 million ($216.9 million at current exchange rates) to bid farewell to Queen Elizabeth II, the country’s longest-reigning monarch, according to estimates published by the Treasury on Thursday, May 18, 2023.

The Queen died on September 8, 2022, at the age of 96, plunging the country into ten days of national mourning.

The state funeral, held on September 19, 2022, followed this period and saw hundreds of thousands of people visiting Westminster where the monarch lay in state.

John Glen, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, said the government’s priority during this national mourning period had been to ensure “these events ran smoothly and with the appropriate level of dignity, while at all times ensuring the safety and security of the public.”

“The Treasury provided additional funding where necessary, and the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Ireland governments were fully refunded for their respective costs,” Mr. Glen said in a written ministerial statement made to Parliament.

The Home Office shouldered the lion’s share of the costs (£73.68 million), followed by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (£57.42 million).

The estimated costs included contributions from other government departments and regions, bringing the total expenditure to over £161 million.

The late Queen’s coffin was laid to rest in St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh for 24 hours before being transported to Westminster Abbey in London.

People queued for hours in all weathers to pay their respects, including notable figures such as David Beckham.

At one point, the wait time was estimated to be more than 24 hours, with the queue extending nearly seven miles (11km) from Westminster Hall.

The police described the state funeral and mourning arrangements as “probably the biggest operation we’re likely to launch in the UK”.

It was the first state funeral since Sir Winston Churchill’s in 1965 and the largest ceremonial event since World War Two.

World leaders and foreign royalty joined the Royal Family for the state funeral at Westminster Abbey, including US President Joe Biden and his wife Jill, and the UK’s Prime Minister Liz Truss.

Millions of people across the country and around the world watched the event.

10 Downing Street has said that the cost was used to facilitate the smooth running of the event and ensure mourners from the UK and across the world could visit and take part safely.

A No 10 spokesman added, “Of course, a major international event of this scale, we wanted to ensure that we could enable people to pay their respects.”

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