Philip Maunder the founder of Summers Insurance had the greatest honour of being invited and attending the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.
As Chairman of the English-Speaking Union, an international charity, based in London, our founder and current Partner, Philip Maunder, was honoured and privileged to receive an invitation to attend the State Funeral of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on Monday 19 September 2022.
Having walked through the most enormous crowds to Westminster Abbey, he was seated by 9:30am. The service actually started at 11:00am but numerous VVIPs and Royals arrived and paraded past to their places in the Abbey. This process took most of the time between 9:30 and the arrival of the Queen’s coffin and senior members of the Royal Family. The service was, of course, magnificent and Philip was very pleased to see, at close quarters, Kings, Queens, Presidents, Prime Ministers and, of course, the coffin itself, draped in the Queen’s Standard. This was an occasion never to be forgotten.
He did observe that Black Hat-Makers must have had a field day as ladies were requested to wear hats and there must have been hundreds of all shapes and sizes (the hats; not the ladies!) – all gorgeous.
Actually leaving the Abbey was something of a crush and must have taken at least half an hour. Crowds nearby, as well as the Press, were amazing. Virtually all the roads in the vicinity of Westminster and St James’s were closed to both pedestrians and vehicles which meant a very long walk back to the hotel by an incredibly circuitous route, eventually through Hyde Park.
In addition to the crowds, a lasting impression of what seemed like acres of flowers in the Royal Parks and elsewhere which had been brought by so many people.
What a day!