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Palace Releasing Details On Queen Elizabeth's Last Journey; Princes William And Harry Together For The First Time; Queen Elizabeth's Coffin Begins Final Journey; Thousands Anticipated To Line Up To Bid The Queen Farewell; Queen's Coffin Begins Journey To Scottish Capital. Aired 4:50-6a ET

Aired September 11, 2022 - 04:50   ET



ANDERSON: I'm Becky Anderson outside of Buckingham Palace. CNN's special coverage of the death of Queen Elizabeth continues with my colleagues in Edinburgh and here in Scotland.


DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: And hello to our viewers in the United States and around the world. I'm Don Lemon in Edinburgh, Scotland. I'm going to be joined by my colleagues Richard Quest, Max Foster, and Christiane Amanpour in just a few minutes.

And in just a few minutes, Queen Elizabeth II's coffin will be moved from Balmoral Castle and brought here to the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the royal family's official Scottish residence. We'll carry it all for you live here on CNN.


It will be the first leg of a solemn final journey back to London, that's where she will lie in state at Westminster Hall until the funeral. Details of the late monarch's funeral were released yesterday afternoon. Services at Westminster Abbey are now set for September 19th, and is eight days from now. Today's somber procession follows a day of pageantry. And even though he automatically became king upon the death of his mother, King Charles III was officially confirmed the new sovereign of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth in an accession ceremony at St. James Palace.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Three cheers for his majesty the king. Hip-hip.

CROWD: Hooray.


CROWD: Hooray.


CROWD: Hooray.


LEMON: And that ceremony was followed by formal events in London and all around the world, acknowledging King Charles III as their new head of state. We also saw a reunion of the royal brothers, Princes William and Harry yesterday. A source says that the new Prince and Princess of Wales invited Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, to join them as they greeted well-wishers paying tribute to the queen outside Windsor Castle.

I want to get straight now to CNN's Isa Soares. She joins me now along the royal mile.

Isa, good morning to you. This is one final farewell from the people of Scotland to their beloved queen. What are you hearing?


That's right, the sun is out, crowds are starting to gather along the royal mile on what will be -- what King Charles III called his mother's last great journey, Don. And in the next 10, 15 minutes, we'll start to see the beginning of that very journey. What we know is that in the last 24 hours or so, the queen's coffin has listen sitting really in the ballroom at Balmoral. It's an oak coffin. That's where she has been for the past few days.

And then we'll see six of the gamekeepers of the Balmoral residence. The people, of course, that manage the Balmoral residence transporting the queen's coffin to a waiting hearse. An opportunity, really, Don, for those who have worked and lived and known the queen for decades to pay their final farewell, their final respect, of course, to the queen.

It will then begin a slow six-hour journey, more than 170 miles along different towns and big cities, making its way to the royal mile and where you are. First, it will go past a tiny little village, picturesque village of Ballater where myself and the crew have been staying and where so many people we have spoken to, Don, had wonderful stories to tell. Of not just the queen, bumping into the queen, seeing her long walks, even in the butcher shop. And as well as King Charles III, wonderful stories.

They will take the time of course to pay tribute, bow their heads, and wait, and really line the streets as a sign of respect. It will then go past several of the big cities, a city of Aberdeen, Dundee, Perth and then it will come down the royal mile where I am, the beginning of the royal mile.

Go past, of course, the St. Giles' cathedral, to my right, continue further down and really where you are for today, the Palace of Holyroodhouse, of course, the official residence of the monarch here in Scotland. She will stay there for overnight before of course we're seeing a procession tomorrow led by the king and the royal family. LEMON: Isa Soares, Thank you very much. It's going to be a long journey in the days ahead to pay -- to honor the queen in her life and her service.

I want to bring in now CNN anchor and correspondent Richard Quest, he's here with me in Edinburgh. Also joining us from Buckingham Palace is CNN Royal Correspondent Max Foster, along with our Chief International Correspondent Christiane Amanpour. Good morning to all of my colleagues, my colleagues that are joining us from Buckingham Palace and, Richard, good morning to you as well.


LEMON: Talk to us about the details this journey the queen -- it's been meticulously planned.

QUEST: Yes, they always had a plan for if the queen were to die in Scotland, in Balmoral. So, it's not as if it was a surprise when it happened and they had to completely revise it. The original plan absolutely had a routine that would happen if she passed in Scotland is not incidental to the queen's life. Balmoral is where she was probably her happiest.


QUEST: It's where she was at her most private. And the route they've chosen today allows several things to happen. Firstly, maximum number of people to come and pay respects, coming through Aberdeen and Dundee.

LEMON: That's why it's taking such a long -- six hours.

QUEST: Absolutely. It would only take a couple of hours, a few hours normal speed. They don't really know. But you see, we look back at Diana, when Diana's cortege went up in the middle of England, there were so many people dropping flowers from bridges and roads and strew -- that the whole thing slowed down more than expected. So, we've got that.


Secondly, she will lie at rest in the houses where she was, of course, monarch, Balmoral. She will lie at the Palace of Holyroodhouse where she came every year for a week, every summer she would be here for a week for official Scottish events. Then she will go to the cathedral.

So, it's been very meticulously designed for maximum ability of people to pay their respects, and of course the royals will be here tomorrow.

LEMON: Yes, and the length of time that's going to take, they're estimate it's going to take six hours, but it could take longer just depending --

QUEST: I think it's going to --

LEMON: -- how many people show up? QUEST: I think it's going to --

LEMON: And what they'd do?

QUEST: I think -- this is going to be the test, if you will, for how things will be in London.


QUEST: How many people come out for today's procession -- sorry, for today's moving and tomorrow's procession.

LEMON: Let's bring in Max Foster and Christiane. Max, to you first, can you give us a sense of who will be invited to the ceremonies that are going to take place during the queen's final journey?

MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: So, Edinburgh we're expecting key members of the royal family. I'm also expecting Prince Harry to go there as well. His movements are being organized separately because he's no longer a working royal, but you'll see some key members there. But this is really an opportunity for the people of Scotland to pay their respects to the queen.

And I think what's very powerful about what we're about to see is it's the first time we're going to see the queen's coffin with the royal stand draped -- standard draped over it. So, you'll see the, you know, the hearse come out of the gates there. And there'll be a royal salute.

And this is a, you know, it's a hugely poignant moment. Just to give you an insight into what it must be like within Balmoral Castle now. As Richard says, this was her, you know, her favorite home. This is where, you know -- I mean, there's some poetry to this. I mean, everyone I've spoken to who's worked for her said, you know, this is perfect.

You know, she welcomed her final prime minister and then she passed away at Balmoral which would have been her wish. But she was incredibly close to those members of staff there and this is a very poignant moment for them. So, she's leaving the place that she died, but it's a long, long journey home. A long journey away from her final resting place, which will be Windsor which is where she'll be laid to rest a week on Monday.

But I think what you're going to see today is some really powerful imagery of this hearse weaving through the magnificent Scottish countryside and villages and towns and through the city of Aberdeen. And you're going to see people out on the streets just looking and being part of this moment of history.

We have got cameras all along the route, there's a helicopter as well which will show aerial views. But for some of the most poignant moments, actually, the helicopter's going to pull away. And the reason we're doing that is so that the sound of helicopter isn't interrupting people and their moment with the former monarch. So, through the towns, you'll see the helicopter pulling away and this is really an emphasis that whilst the media is very important, the world needs to see this, this is also very important opportunity for the people of Scotland to have their moment with the queen.

LEMON: Christiane, listen, you can plan everything meticulously but you can't plan exactly how many people will show up. How they will react to this. As Richard said, there were so many people coming up to pay respects to Princess Di when she passed in her funeral. Actually, throwing flowers at the car and it slowed it down for a bit. We're thinking it's going to take six hours, it could take much longer, but this will be for the people here in Scotland.

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Indeed. And I would be very surprised if people didn't come with flowers to strew in front of her cortege or, you know, in her wake. I think that's probably very likely to happen.

If any of the evidence from Buckingham Palace, Balmoral, Windsor Castle where mountains of flowers have been laid over the last several days is anything to go on. I think, you know, Richard said that Scotland played a huge part in her own personal life and her own affection. It also plays a huge part in the idea of the monarchy, and I think that was highlighted during King Charles' accession, the formal accession yesterday when one of the first proclamations that he signed was to respect the Scottish church, if you remember.

And so, Scotland plays a huge part in this United Kingdom, not just in her personal life. I think, you know, the world, of course, is watching and perhaps President Macron of France summed it up almost perfectly when he said, you know, to you, she was your queen. To us she was the queen. To all of us, she will be with all of us forever. And I think that was really what the world is thinking about right now.

And the queen, I think, right now, the way the affection, the way the mourning, the grief, but also the calm -- really, the calm succession and the proceeding with the constitutional, you know, change that's happening as it should. I think it's so much about her personally. Maybe less about the monarchy. Obviously, the monarchy is there in the background. It is this amazing symbol. It is -- it is, though, very much about her, the queen herself.


And I find it interesting today, it's a Sunday, obviously, in the Christian faith, a day of worship, the sabbath of the Christian faith. And there's been so much said about her on the radio today about how not only she was a woman of great personal faith and she was formerly the head of the Church of England as is now her heir, King Charles. But for her, it wasn't about an exclusive religion. It was about the Anglican church, the protestant church welcoming also religions in. Not just being a chauvinistic, you know, I am the best kind of religion.

And to that end, we heard so many comments on the radio and TV today from members of the Muslim faith here, members of the different Indian faiths like Hinduism and Sikhism. We heard from the Jewish community that she reached out and she welcomed as head of the Anglican church here all other faiths. And people really respected that. And they believe that King Charles will continue that tradition as well.

LEMON: That was part of her service as queen, the promise that she made when she was crowned. Richard, you know, Christiane just mentioned President Macron of France, but we know the funeral is going to take place on September 19th, that's eight days from now. President Biden is going to attend. What do you expect in terms of world leaders paying their respects to the queen?

QUEST: The event is going to be on a scale that we've never seen the like of before. The moment you've got the U.S. president coming, it elevates it because now other leaders -- I mean, I'm not being fussy when I say this, you know, major funerals there's a huge element of diplomacy about it.

LEMON: Right.

QUEST: You look at who else is going. Who's not going. You want to have a match of -- you want to have a match of the various people. So, I would say we know that Putin is not coming, that's not a surprise.

LEMON: Yes, we're hearing that there's --

QUEST: I beg your pardon.

LEMON: Yes, there's movement now. They're preparing to go in, I believe the coffin is in the back of the hearse.

QUEST: Yes, so, here we have the coffin which is now being moved from the state dining room through the small dining room and now it's leaving Balmoral. As it starts the six-hour journey.

LEMON: From Balmoral to here.

QUEST: The minister from Crathie Church is with other royal, the Scottish standard is across -- is laid across the coffin.

LEMON: And, again, as you said, Richard, this normally only takes a few hours to travel from Balmoral to here in Edinburgh but it's going to take six hours, again, because they want people to have as much time with the queen as possible. It's going to be going through Aberdeen -- the coffin is going to go through the village of Ballater and it's going to go -- the coffin is going to travel to the city of Aberdeen, that's at 6:00 a.m. eastern time in the United States, and then through the city of Dundee as well. And again, going slowly so that people can get the chance to pay their final respects to the queen.

QUEST: One of the comments from yesterday's briefing was that the queen, since she passed, had been lying at rest in the ballroom at Balmoral Castle which they described as a scene of great dignity. And now, after six of the gatekeepers carried the coffin to the hearse, it will -- they're describing this movement, by the way, Don, as being -- it will drive in a manner that will allow people to witness the move. So, that suggests it will go faster on motorways and interstates, it will slow down dramatically in towns and villages.

LEMON: Max Foster, I want to bring you in because I've been watching in Scotland overnight. There had been rehearsals, they have been practicing, they have been practicing for days. And, you know, just from the images that were up from the news broadcasts, you sort of got an idea of how they will handle the situation once it is here in Edinburgh.

But, again, highly practiced and they have been going through it since the queen's death. And as a matter of fact, they were doing it last night. So, again, gives you an idea of what is going to happen. Can you take us through what is planned here once the queen arrives in Edinburgh?

FOSTER: Yes, I just want to say on that point, Don, we were talking about it yesterday how everything is to the minute, to the plans that were outlined and signed off by the queen. So, there was an opportunity for the king to adjust these plans because he had to sign them off before they're actually put into place after the queen's death. But actually, everything here, literally to the minute is, you know, matching all of the notes that I was given before the queen's death.

So, what we have here is an unfolding of events which is exactly as the queen wanted it. So, that's quite moving. I was also quite moved just to see the queen's coffin there on her own, very solitary. So, in that cortege there's police at the front and back. And then in the car behind the coffin is the minister of Crathie Church, which is the church at Balmoral where the queen would go and pray and had a very personal relationship with that Church.


So, the minister from that church is the only person, really, accompanying the coffin on this very long lonely journey to Edinburgh. When the coffin gets to Edinburgh, it will be laid to rest at the Palace of Holyrood. And it'll rest there overnight to allow staff there to pay their respects.

And then they will -- the king will arrive tomorrow and he will really lead events and then we'll have that service later on. And there will be a very emotional, I think, procession from the Palace of Holyrood down to St. Charles cathedral. And there'll be a vigil there for this -- opportunity for the people of Scotland to pay their respects.

And look at this, this is Scotland. This is, you know, it's a -- you know, there are, you know, huge areas where there are no people living. And this weaving through feeling lonely, but then you're going to see all the people come out as the cortege goes through the towns.

You'll notice where Christiane and I are sitting, actually the king is holding audiences today with Commonwealth ambassadors and the head of the Commonwealth. He -- that's all behind closed doors. He's stepping back today. So, yesterday was all about the new king, as he was proclaimed. You saw how the flags went to full-staff on the day which reflected him, still are full-staff.

But a lit later today, you'll see the flags come to half-staff around the United Kingdom and that's to reflect that today is about the queen. And this is the ultimation you're going to see over the next few days. A day about the queen, the late queen, and then a day looking forward to the future monarchy. But today, with this moment we're seeing unfold before us is very much about Queen Elizabeth II.

AMANPOUR: And it really -- it reminds me of the -- sort of the mantra that she had throughout her monarchy. They have to see it to believe it. She was really the monarch who really began the idea of highly visual reflections of what they were doing.

And she had to sign off on the first ever televised coronation, for instance. We read that it wasn't something she thought she wanted to do because it was a very -- it is a very sacred oath to, not just the people, but to the church. But she agreed, in the end, to televise the coronation back in 1953.

And fast forward to today -- well, yesterday, the accession, you know, King Charles agreed to make that public. It had never been public before. TV and radio had not been inside that ceremony before and now it is. And now even in death, her vision of legitimacy, it has to be -- we have to be seen to be believed. It has to be seen to be believed, is taking place, you know, in front of our eyes now. In front of, more importantly, the eyes of the people of this United Kingdom.

LEMON: And we are watching the images now of the queen. Her body being driven through Scotland, the country side of Scotland now making its way here to Edinburgh. Richard, go ahead.

QUEST: What I noticed from these pictures that we're looking at the -- from the helicopter, obviously the dignified pace upon which the cortege is moving, but just the beautiful scenery. Just look at it, Don. This is some of the United Kingdom's most glorious landscapes, highlands, lowlands of Scotland.

And this is why the royal family adored spending six -- the queen used to spend seven weeks a year here because this was where she felt happiest. And the queen mother used to go fly fishing, of course. There are various other homes, the Castle of Mey, Berkeley, loads of other places that are all on the same Balmoral estate.

LEMON: Well, this was her happy place. And in --

QUEST: Oh, absolutely.

LEMON: But, you know, in recent --

QUEST: And if you look at the -- if you look at the recent home movies that have been released of the queen in the younger years, they're all of them rolling down the hill at Balmoral.


QUEST: They're playing with their children at Balmoral. Picnics at Balmoral.

LEMON: In a moment of complete transparency, I haven't had much sleep since I've been here and partly it's my fault because I stayed up all night watching the images of, you know, remembering the queen on every station here. And I watched the beautiful images last night of her time as a child and then meeting Prince Philip and the marriage, the coronation, it's just beautiful. But this was -- it was actually the family's happy place as well.

QUEST: Completely.

LEMON: She made it that.

QUEST: Completely. And what's going to be interesting, the road that they are on at the moment from Balmoral, the first really big place will be Aberdeen.

LEMON: Right.

QUEST: It will take about an hour, an hour and a half to get to Aberdeen. And remember, that's where the royals flew into on their way here, it's an hour-long drive, so a couple of hours to an hour and a half to Aberdeen, and that will be the first, if you and I, big moment to see how many people come out on to the streets to pay their respects.

LEMON: Max Foster, will we see any of the members of the royal family or Scottish royals or British royals today?


FOSTER: I don't think we will, potentially back here in London. But they want all the focus to be on Scotland today. So, over the course of the next few days, you're going to see all the nations of the United Kingdom being given attention, effectively today and tomorrow, is all about Scotland. Later on, next week, it will be about Wales. There will also be a moment for Northern Ireland as well. These are the nations of the United Kingdom at the very center of what the king's work will be.

Also, a very clear message that this is a United Kingdom and this is when Scotland is interesting, right? Because there is a big campaign led Nicola Sturgeon, the first minister, to break Scotland away from the United Kingdom. And, you know, when we talk about the queen never getting involved in politics, there was a moment just before the Scottish independence referendum where she did actually get involved. And this is the only time I can really think of where she got involved.

And just to describe what happened, Don, this is all optics and mirrors. But she came out of Crathie Church up there at Balmoral and she spoke to a member of the public outside and she simply said, I hope people weigh this decision carefully. I can't remember the exact words.

But it makes you think really carefully about what they're going to do in this independence referendum. And that was -- the way it works is we always go to people that the queen spoken to and ask them what she said. They knew that we would get that information. And actually, politicians here in the U.K. would argue that that did affect people's decision about whether or not they chose Scottish independence or being part of the United Kingdom.

The king will, I'm sure, want Scotland to remain part of the United Kingdom, although officially he will say it's a decision for Scotland. He is the king of Scotland. It's a different nation. It has its own identity. Its own culture, and that's very well-respected.

And they have their own titles as well when they're in Scotland. But this is about Scotland and showing that they are very, very much a part of the previous monarchy but also the new monarchy. And we'll see that reflected when the king comes up to Scotland tomorrow.

LEMON: Six-hour journey to the Scottish capital here. Christiane Amanpour, you were talking about how long this journey is going to take and Richard mentioned that, you know, as they are in areas that are less populated it will be faster. But then when they get to more populated areas, Dundee, Aberdeen and so forth, we should expect to start seeing people who are making their way to this route, to the procession, just to watch and pay their respects.

AMANPOUR: Indeed, Don. And as everybody watches it, either in real life if they can get there or on the television because as we are doing, its wall to wall on obviously all the British TVs and elsewhere. It's very meditative. It's a very meditative moment because, you know, it's a car. It has the queen's coffin in it. It has the royal standard of Scotland over to the -- the Scottish standard. It has a lovely -- we see briefly wreath of white flowers on top, it's really simple.

We're not going to see that all the time. We're just going to see these aerials for most of the time. And so, it's meditative. And it's a time to potentially think and remember most of all what she has meant. Remember that -- I think the statistic is something like 80 percent of British people alive have only known this one queen on the throne. That the world, which is really such a young population in so many parts of the world has only known this one queen.

And that for the -- for Great Britain, I -- the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, you know, she -- her, she the person, remained the glue that held it together. And over the last few years there has been, as Max alluded to, much talk and thought about political, sort of, nationalism amongst the -- you know, the constituent parts of the United Kingdom. Scotland is the most, you know, out there. But Northern Ireland as well.

And I think, again, recalling what she did in Northern Ireland is an amazing thing to remember because she also talked about her faith, about the church. Not just being a matter of peace, of faith. But also, you know, to be able to bring peace in this world.

So that she really put to good use many, observers say, when she took the courageous decision to go to Northern Ireland and meet with Martin McGuinness and the other members of Sinn Fein, the Northern Ireland nationalist leaders who were part of then the Good Friday Agreement. Remembering that they first, before becoming political leaders, were members of the IRA, which certainly in Great Britain was termed a terrorist organization.


But she overcame all that when they became a legitimate political organization. And many, many to this day remember that incredible step she took to shake that hand, with a huge flashing smile, not under duress, but willingly. And we really should remember that because peace is only waged by being able to understand your enemy in the end, by being willing to reach across that divide and make friends.

As I think it was the great Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin said, you don't make peace with your friends you make peace with your enemies. And this is something that she was very much devoted to and, you know, acted upon and showed that she was the example of that.

LEMON: Yes, the first stop where we will see -- the first part where we will see people is going to be Ballater. And there are images we will see soon of Ballater where they're going to stop, where they're going to -- not stop, but go through first.

QUEST: One of the interesting things, Don, if I can just say is --

LEMON: Yes, go for it.

QUEST: You know, this talk of independence in Scotland, the first minister and indeed the SNP have made clear that in the event of independence of Scotland, the queen -- or now, the king would remain head of state.

LEMON: Right.

QUEST: So, it would become a realm in other countries. So, they've taken away this idea that people -- that they might have not wanted to lose the monarchy by saying, no, there would be still the monarch. It would still be King Charles III. But he would only be the king of Scotland for them. Not the king of the United Kingdom. So, the independent thing is a very interesting question for King Charles as he navigates the best way forward should that become a real issue in the next five years.

LEMON: Christiane was talking moments ago about, you know, the reason we are paying so much attention to Scotland, obviously, that's -- this is where she died. But why Holyroodhouse? Why Edinburgh first? What's the significance of that?

QUEST: Capital of Scotland. It's the seat of government. Behind us is the parliament, it's where the first minister is. This is the palace where the queen will come every July and hold -- have a week of official events, including some very large garden parties here.

I've actually been in the Palace of Holyroodhouse. It's kept very traditional. The queen's rooms are extremely ordinary. Two bar electric fires, if you will. You know, there's no fuss and grandeur when the queen is in Scotland because it's their home. It -- it is Ballater. I asked the taxi driver this morning, is it Ballater or Ballater? And he said, it doesn't matter. We use both. So, if anybody is going to take me to task, the taxi driver says Ballater or Ballater is acceptable.

LEMON: Ballater or Ballater. Max foster, speak to us about Ballater here. This is where we will start to see the crowds and the people who are coming out to pay their respects and honor the late queen.

FOSTER: Yes, I just wanted -- you asked me earlier if we will see a member of the royal family today, I'm being told that we will see a member of the royal family in the reception at the Palace of Holyrood. There will be a royal salute when the coffin arrives there. We will see a member of the royal family but I'm not quite sure who that will be. I imagine, Christiane, it will be Anne.

AMANPOUR: I was going to say --


AMANPOUR: -- because she was there the whole time, Princess Anne.

FOSTER: And she's going to accompany the coffin back to London as well. Ballater is the first place we're going to get a -- the public will have a chance to see the coffin. So, this is an incredibly powerful moment.

I think, to be respectful, we should just be listening for a moment because the whole point of this entire exercise is to allow local people to have their moment with the queen.


LEMON: The queen's coffin is driving now through the Scottish village of Ballater. It's now passing through that village now. A cortege of seven weeks accompanying Queen Elizabeth's coffin on its journey to the Palace of Holyroodhouse here in Edinburgh where Richard Quest and I are. I want to bring in now Isa Soares.

Isa, you were just in Balleter. What can you tell us?

SOARES: Yes, for many people, Don, as we look at these images this very solemn moment, of course. For many people, the queen wasn't just a monarch. She was also a neighbor. And I think what I have seen in the last, kind of, two days is really much a somber mood, not just in Ballater, but also in Balmoral. Ballater is 15 minutes or so away from Balmoral as Richard and Max and Christiane had been saying as well.

It is beautiful. A highland, It's just perfect surrounding. And of course, one of the queen's favorite residence since she was a little girl, of course. So, for many of the neighbors I've spoken to, they remember her. They know -- they remember bumping into her. She walked her corgis.

They saw her driving her Land Rover. She went to the local butcher shop. I spoke to the butcher there who told me she was just one of us. She was just so normal, so herself. The same thing he said about King Charles.

So, for many of the people we saw there bowing their heads, taking the time to reflect really on this monarch and the service, the last 70 years, it's an incredible poignant time for them. I haven't seen when I was up in Balmoral and at Ballater the jubilation that you have been seeing, and Richard and Christiane and Max, outside Buckingham Palace. It's very much been very somber.

People wanting to take the time, Don, to reflect on the queen's last 70 years because, of course, they had that connection with her. They bumped into her as she walked along the highlands. They would -- they saw her over the last years, including when there was a bit of flood around the area a couple of years ago, she got involved as well. So, very much part of the community. She went to the church, was part of the congregation just down the road.

So, for many people, she means so much more than just a monarch. So, this is really a time for them to reflect and also pay their final respects and final farewell to a monarch they have loved for so long and so deeply, Don.

LEMON: Richard Quest, go on.

QUEST: There was a documentary made, Prince Philip led the route -- it was called the "Royal Family" 1969. It was the first time that the cameras had been allowed in to -- the idea was show the monarchy, show the queen, show the family. Highly controversial. But much of the most famous parts of that film was shot at Balmoral. That's the bit where you see Philip barbecuing sausages. Where you see them fly fishing. Where you see the queen opening and closing Tupperware and things.

In fact, the queen, -- the royal family hated it afterwards and it's never been seen since. It was shown twice and that's the end of it. You can't even find it on YouTube. But it points to the fact that Balmoral was the place. (INAUDIBLE) is Christmas. The palace is the office, Windsor is where you live on state occasions. But Balmoral is holidays, vacation --

LEMON: Summer, family --

QUEST: -- home.


Yes. Max Foster, listening to the folks this morning here in Edinburgh, also Ballater, there were folks speaking as well as Balmoral. She was very much part of the community. And quite sadly, they said that they became concerned because she would be out and about and people would see her. But this time recently, that did not happen. So they knew something had changed, something was different.

FOSTER: Yes, that was really how we thought we've got so nervous, wasn't it a few days ago when just ahead of the death, but everything went quiet. And this is what suddenly we expected would happen when the inevitable news was about to be delivered.

It speaks to the fact isn't it, Don, that we're so used to seeing her when she doesn't appear, it's very unsettling. And that's the bigger issue that we're going to have going forward. I think when we have more problems, you know, we're going to have a very tough time here in the United Kingdom and the Queen won't be there to study us. Boris Johnson brought her in at the height of the pandemic to study the nation and she effectively -- and she did that very effectively.

Looking at those images of Ballater, I wasn't going to mention this but as we saw it on the camera, I can, I think. This -- what you're seeing now is just the central cortege as it were, a much longer one following a whole backup cortege. We saw that backup hearse there as well. There's even a backup military bearer party as well, just in case something happens mechanically to the, you know, to the front of the cortege.

And it's fascinating to me to see all of these plans are being briefed on for years, you know, coming into a reality and they are -- it's working impeccably. It's quite amazing.

AMANPOUR: It really is. And I think what struck me is she went through the village where people were the first time. It was solemn, and it was quiet. You know, there was no, you know, wailing and gnashing of teeth. There hasn't really been at all. It's been a very solemn reflection on her, respectful.

You saw all the dignitaries lined up from the church, from the military. You saw them stand in front of the War Memorial in the village of Ballater. Everybody at attention and the civilians there, the citizens, the residents of that village very quiet as they watched her pass for the last time. They will never see this again, even though she was part of their lives, as you say, for so long.

And it's so interesting to hear what people are saying because we've just been talking about Scotland and how they have a fierce, certainly a big percentage of them desire for independence. And yet, all the quotes that you see from people now in the aftermath of the Queen's death say, look, yes, but this is about the Queen and she transcends politics.

And we've heard the same today from the Vice President, the head of Sinn Fein in Northern Ireland, the Queen was somebody who was -- you know, she transcended politics. She had a role that was just so completely above that fray. And that's why this is about her. And it's not just about the monarchy, although the pageantry, and the choreography is playing out, as you agree for so many years and as we expect it to be.

But again, you keep thinking and going back to that statement that she made on her 21st birthday in South Africa, in Cape Town, on a visit with her parents to the Commonwealth, in which she said, my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service. And that we are seeing now the people paying tribute.

FOSTER: What's amazing about that, she always referred back to that speech. And that's basically --


FOSTER: -- where she outlined her strategy at the age of 21 --


FOSTER: -- which she lived to right until the end.

AMANPOUR: Yes. And she said, most importantly, and I think as a citizen, or as a subject as the Brits have called, you know, she said, I cannot do without your support. All of this that I pledged to you, I cannot do without your support. So from the beginning, she nailed her mast to the British people.

And yes, there were just a couple of stumbles. But on the whole, she, as a person, kept that role, fulfill that role. And how can one forget in Balmoral that last picture of her smiling broadly standing with the aid of a cane, but nonetheless, you know, 36, 48 hours before she died, that's what she did.

FOSTER: I spoke to -- sorry, Don. We're going to go. I just want to -- on that, the photographer that took those pictures, you know, the big smiley picture was you're looking right into the camera, that was just before the prime minister came in, and the photographer spoke about how she was in such good spirits. Don.

LEMON: And working right until end. I just want to bring us to the moment here because I'm sure people as I am watching, this is breathtaking. The images are breathtaking. The countryside is beautiful. And you can see, Richard, why she'd loved spending time here in Scotland. It's just -- to watch this. It's --

QUEST: The whole thing is going to be a series of waves leading to a crescendo next week. We're -- we have this moment of going to Edinburgh and then the lying and rest here.


Then we're going to have the body taken to London, it'll be flown to London. Then it'll lie in state at Westminster Hall where we expect hundreds of thousands of people who want to pay their respects. All leading up to a week on Monday, which is the funeral. And every -- I mean, world leader terms, we won't have seen anything like this --


QUEST: -- in all that (INAUDIBLE).

LEMON: I listen to Christiane just a moment ago, I didn't want to interrupt because there's a delay and speak over but I think she brings up a very good point is that there hasn't been sort of this gnashing and wailing because as Christiane pointed out just a couple of days ago, she's 96 years old.

QUEST: Yes. LEMON: And, you know, we don't know exactly the cause. But, you know, she's older. It wasn't didn't come as a complete shock, because she had lived a long and beautiful life of service. It wasn't the shock and the suddenness that happened with Diana.

QUEST: I think that we can say her death is not tragic.

LEMON: Right.

QUEST: And that's -- this is the natural course of events.

LEMON: Right.

QUEST: You get old, and you pass on. Unfortunately, in this case, it's somebody who meant so much to so many people and was so integral the glue that held so much together on a national basis. But the role that she played has now been handed and it's also crucial. This is not a soap opera or drama. This is part of Britain. This is our fabric.

And the number one thing the Queen would have wanted, is dignified, constitutional transition.

LEMON: That's what he's getting.

QUEST: And that's the key and we're seeing it played Max put it beautifully. The planning, the meticulous nature, we are seeing it play out exactly as intended, and importantly, as meant to. So you have on -- remember yesterday, I was talking about two sides of the same coins.

LEMON: Right.

QUEST: Yesterday, we celebrated the new reign of King Charles III. Today, we have the sorrow and sadness as we watch his mother's coffin.

LEMON: You know, Max, the Queen's funeral, and the events leading up to it have really been in the works for years now. And as you mentioned before, even the backup has a backup. Nothing will go wrong, or at least because of the planning, nothing should go wrong when it comes to this.

Max Foster? I'm not sure if you heard me.

AMANPOUR: You can see here where we are --

LEMON: Oh continue.

AMANPOUR: -- at Buckingham Palace. In fact, you can hear maybe the clip clop of horses. This is the ceremonial Royal Guard, the cavalry, the Household Cavalry, which are going back and forth. Starting a trumpet flare right now. We're not sure exactly what that is about, or is it practice. But nonetheless, here in Buckingham Palace way, way, way south of where the Queen's cortege is winding through the Scottish territory, is what we're seeing here.

And, Don, again, you know, there's so many questions they're going to be asked in the future in the early days of King Charles's reign, about how you keep the United Kingdom together, and also about how you keep the Commonwealth together and about what happens if more countries want to spin off to independence. Again, it's worth remembering that the Queen herself, Queen Elizabeth, was again front and center of that debate.

She welcomed members of the Commonwealth that had sought independence. It's not like she put up, you know, for one of a better word, of Berlin wall between herself as sovereign and those who had taken that independence and become sovereign while remaining parts of the Commonwealth. She welcomed that. She wasn't -- it wasn't an asset (ph) to her. And I think that's really important to remember as well.

So when everyone starts looking at what might happen to the Commonwealth, because let's face it, what we are seeing is one of the last -- well, the last great monarch of centuries of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. But presiding not over an enlarged and enlarging nation, but one that is shrinking. And that is going to be the big challenge for this country and for the King.

How does this country continue to do what it's done over the decades and that is always punch above its weight, no matter how physically small punch above its weight in every circumstance. And that's going to be the challenge for the next set of politicians and the monarch.

LEMON: I think that is a sentiment among people what will happen next, what will a King Charles reign be like.

QUEST: So there are two aspects is the certain and the uncertain. The certain is that he becomes king which is what has happened. He takes over the reins of sovereignty and he -- we start a new era, the era of the King Charles.


The uncertain bit, of course, is the significant part, which is we don't know how he will govern. Will he not interfere? He says he won't be the meddler, as he was always claimed to be. He says he recognizes his new duty within constitutional parliamentary democracy. Well, we'll see.

But for the moment, I tell you what, I am hearing a lot more of, Don.

LEMON: What you're hearing?

QUEST: I'm hearing a lot more groundswell of support from Charles. Everybody I asked, they want Charlie boy to do well, let's face it. He's been part of our public life for as long as the Queen. So Prince of Wales, the 1970s, I watched the investiture. So -- that there was a real element of, we want him to do well.

LEMON: Yes. I want to bring in now CNN Royal Historian Kate Williams to join us in this conversation as we watched the cortege is said here of the late Queen. These plans have been in the works for the funeral and the events leading up to it for years. There is a backup to the backup, as Max Foster pointed out. This is the Queen's final journey, and they want to make sure everything is perfect, everything is in order.

KATE WILLIAMS, CNN ROYAL HISTORIAN: Yes, Don, this is the Queen's final journey as she goes to Edinburgh. And then we'll finally come to London to lay in state on Wednesday. We're expecting more than a million people, I would say that's a conservative estimate, probably millions of people will be queuing up to see her.

And these images we're looking at now, so moving. We've had so much pomp over the last few days, the sort of mechanisms of royalty, and it really reminds us looking at the coffin in the car, how the Queen, the monarchy, this huge institution. It was this one lady, this one person who is here in her final journey. And I'm so moved looking at these pictures as she passes through this -- the wonderful scenery of Scotland, the place she loves so much.

Of course, we have never had a monarchy of the that Britain and Scotland expanded up pass away. In Scotland, we had a joint monarchy from 1603 when Elizabeth I died and James I became king of England of Scotland. The Act of Union 1707 were a country joined England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the United Kingdom.

As you've been discussing, we may see a change of that, a Scottish referendum, and may be Scottish independence, and the new monarch would be head of a different independent nation. And Scotland was so important to the Queen as you've been saying, she got engaged in Balmoral, she loved Balmoral. It was so important to her.

In that final -- suspend the final days of her illness there. And these moments reminding us that she was the monarchy, she was an institution. But she was also much beloved by her children, by her grandchildren, by her great grandchildren, and by the people of Scotland. That real emotion that we saw of her going through Ballater, and what we will see when we get to Edinburgh. These really are historic pictures, a moment in history, and really a recognition of the Queen's real deep, deep connection with Scotland.

LEMON: Max Foster as the Royal Correspondent here on CNN, obviously, this is what you do. Family was so important to the Queen. And yesterday we saw -- we had a moment with the two sons, William and Harry and their wives, unexpected. But it gives us an indication, I'm wondering if you believe so as to what the future might be here for the monarchy where the plan to take it.

Max did not hear it. Richard, do you want to respond to that?

QUEST: Yes. I mean, it was very important. It was a significant moment. Do I think that it put everything to write? No, I don't. Do I think that they did what they had to do to get rid of a very ugly scene or saw? Absolutely. Being together was a rapprochement of sorts. But we've still got Harry's booked to come later this year. We've still got a whole slew of other incidents that are (INAUDIBLE). We've still got the audio of the recent interview that the Duchess did. So I think it -- did it put things to rest temporarily? Yes.

LEMON: Yes. But my question was, is that the Queen would be happy to see that. QUEST: Oh, the Queen adored Harry. She said it. Remember, we heard her talk about Harry numerous times. So yes, absolutely. They have done exactly what the Queen would have wished, firm first, family put on a good show (ph).

LEMON: Max Foster?

FOSTER: Yes, just to update you on who's in the cortege. The palace has just let us know. There is a member of the royal family, it is the Princess Royal, Princess Anne but also her husband, so Tim Lawrence.


As I said earlier, that administer the Crathie Church at Balmoral, a representative of the Lord Chamberlain's office. I think we have some detail on the flowers as well. So you'll see the Royal Standard, which is draped over the coffin. The Royal Standard can't fly above the Queen anymore, because the monarch is obviously now king. But the tradition is that the standard can remain on the coffin until the Queen is laid to rest. So you'll also see that when she comes to Westminster Hall, and you'll see items of crown jewels as well on the coffin by the time it gets to London.

But on the flowers at the moment, we have sweet peas, which were one of the Queen's favorite flowers. So that's a really touching sort of moment there really. You know, when we talk about the levels of detail, this has been planned to even these details, and even these details were signed off by the Queen. Also white Heather, which is obviously a reflection of the nation of Scotland.

And fine fur, you'll see how -- pine fur -- what am I talking about? You know, we've seen this cortege weaving through these pine forests in Scotland are so well known for the pine forests, as well as the lakes of course. And she's had that reflected as well in the flowers. And I wonder Christiane, we'll probably have different flowers when the coffin comes to England.

AMANPOUR: For sure, for sure. This we understand we were told it's according to Operation London Bridge, are flowers that were collected and created from the estate of Balmoral. So again, it's all very personal.

LEMON: There is still business to be had such, Max Foster, I don't know if you can hear me. King Charles is going to hold audiences with religious and Commonwealth leaders today.

FOSTER: I'm here. So there's a series of meetings in the palace, and this is the Commonwealth day for him in a way, you know, before all of those leaders fly in for the funeral. So this is what we received, you know, at 2:00 this afternoon, which is 9:00 a.m., Eastern, the King will receive the Secretary General of the Commonwealth, here in the 1844 room in Buckingham Palace behind me. And the King will attend a reception of realm High Commissioner.

So these are the ambassadors from the realms, the likes of, you know, Australia, Canada, Jamaica, Belize. There'll be a reception in the ballroom of Buckingham Palace, and they will be able to express their condolences to the King and also discuss, you know, his forthcoming monarchy as well. But then a bit later on, the Dean of Windsor will visit as well. The Dean of Windsor will be central to the laying to rest of the Queen's coffin at Windsor.

So after Westminster Abbey, the coffin will be driven in a procession to Windsor lay to rest at Windsor in the chapel there. There's a chapel to the side. So you'll remember, Don, from Harry and Meghan's wedding, the church at Windsor. Just to the left, there's a small chapel, where the Queen's mother and father are buried and spots have been reserved next to them for the Queen and indeed, Prince Philip.

Prince Philip currently resting in a vault underneath the chapel, along with, you know, basically a set of shelves there I say, that's how it looks, with other kings and queens. He will -- the coffin will be brought up from the basement there and buried alongside the Queen. So there's something quite poetic about the fact that Queen will be returning to her parents and Philip who were the three people closest to her.


FOSTER: And Margaret, of course, she's buried there as well.

AMANPOUR: Indeed. And I just think just sort of another PS, but it's also so important to remember. As you say, it's Commonwealth Day, King Charles is talking to presumably bareness Scotland, who is the administrative head --


AMANPOUR: -- of the Commonwealth. And we'll be discussing what's, you know, what's next. And there are some amazing pictures. I don't know whether we have access to them, but this incredible site of Queen Elizabeth dancing with one of the great African liberation leaders becoming the first independent president of Ghana president, as we remember, Kwame Nkrumah. She dancing with him with, you know, with her crown, and you know, the sash.

And it was just amazing, because she gave the image and the message, whether it was with words, or whether it was with body language, you know, dancing or whatever, that this was, OK. This conversation is not over. And many people want to have this conversation still. But she said, a really interesting example.

In, you know, the great historian Simon Schama has been writing about her legacy and he reminds us that she used her broadcast, her Christmas broadcast in 1983 to insist, quote, you know, the terrible inequity, the big affliction, as they put it, of the modern world was that huge gulf between developed and undeveloped countries.


And she put her, you know, her finger on that issue knowing what it was all about, being the title head of the Commonwealth. And it's really very interesting, particularly when she had -- remember, South Africa was -- certain apartheid South Africa was a pariah all through the 80s, all through the prime ministership of Margaret Thatcher. Finally, when -- she apparently, supported the sanctions.

Now, I don't know whether this is true, but she did. Certainly, the government at the time did not. The sanctions against apartheid South Africa, but certainly she had invited, you know, Nelson Mandela was president, the first president of majority rule South Africa, the first black president of that nation. And to this day until he died, he spoke about what an amazing trip it was.

And if I'm not sure, he either just straight out talk to her as Elizabeth or it was Lilibet but he just -- there were no niceties. I mean, there was a politeness and respect. But he really felt that, you know, he had a big connection with her.

FOSTER: So the King will be meeting, Christiane, in Buckingham Palace with the High Commissioners from the realm. So if we look at who's there, you know, on my travels, you know, try and sort of figure out which countries are more likely to, you know, reconsider their position as realms going forward, I mean, you've got tovolo (ph). I think Canada, I think New Zealand, those high commissioners will be there.

I don't think there's any big debates there about removing the Queen as head of state. Certainly, in Quebec, when I was there, there's a massive Republican movement, but broadly across Canada. I think they're quite reverential. And I think it's always been interesting because, you know, when it's described to me, as we've got something the Americans haven't gotten, they were obsessed with the royal family. That's what -- that's their view.

But listen to the other High Commissioners that will be there, who I think -- were I think there are debates in all of these countries, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Belize, Grenada --

AMANPOUR: Jamaica?

FOSTER: Christopher and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, I think there's growing Republican movements in all of those nations.

AMANPOUR: But again, she did set the standard, she set the example that as even as head of the Commonwealth, she didn't consider those who wanted independence, to be somehow, you know, naughty children. She considered absolutely fine. And she welcomed them. And she continued, you know, that relationship.

And that is going to be very interesting to see as more and more countries want to be their own sovereign countries, but maybe still have this important, loose relationship with the Commonwealth and with the United Kingdom. That'll be interesting to see, but it's up to them. Both King now, before Prince Charles said that, Prince William said it, now Prince of Wales, it's essentially up to them. And whether like the E.U. or whatever, they want to have some kind of loose Alliance. LEMON: And Christiane, I want to remind the viewers who are watching, this is the Queen's final journey here. The cortege is making its way to Edinburgh, where she will be here for days, for a couple of days, and then people will at least overnight, and people can pay their respects to her. But we've been talking about every detail that has been planned.

Max, I think it's interesting, because this is the Queen. These were her decisions, the type of coffin, the type of flowers, exactly what we're seeing today is exactly as she had planned it.

FOSTER: This is exactly what the Queen would have wanted. I mean, as the sort of plans unfold, they're being, you know, they're being officially announced by the palace. But we've seen a broad sense of the plans before this. And actually, they're matching exactly what the Queen wanted.

Of course, they also matched what the Queen -- King wanted, because he signed off on this whole period of mourning and everything involved in it. And there's so much to reflect here. And this is all, as we discussed, about Scotland and also the Queen's relationship about Scotland, that'd be very much reflected where you are, Don when we see the service and the vigil at St. Giles' cathedral.

I think you'll have a really poignant moment when the cortege arrives in Edinburgh. There'll be this magnificent scene frankly, of the cortege moving through Edinburgh, which is a beautiful city. And I understand we're going to have this, you know, unbelievable sort of wide shot of the cortege as we begin to the capital of Scotland, and into the palace of Holyrood and there'll be a guard of honor that it will be silent. I think that'd be really poignant.

We also know that when the coffin comes back to London, it will rest for a night in Buckingham Palace. The procession from the palace to Westminster Hall will also be silent and the royal family will be walking behind the coffin. This is somber, but it's -- how do you describe it?

AMANPOUR: Respectful.

FOSTER: Respectful.

AMANPOUR: It's respectful. It's a moment they've lost their mother. The country has lost the matriarch. It's a really respectful moment for everybody just to reflect, to mourn, to consider.


And to that end I want to ask you, Max, because the plan was called Operation London Bridge. The plan when her father died was called Operation Hyde Park. It's been written that London Bridge signifies a much more dramatic end because of 70 years on the throne. London Bridge coming down is a, you know, figuratively, a dramatic statement.

And I want to know what do you know, because it was apparently the private secretary, the Queen's private secretary's duty, when she died, to send the message London bridge is down.

FOSTER: I think that's -- I don't know, it's good headline, isn't it? I don't think London bridge is down, is that -- was that the phrase?


FOSTER: Well, I'm being getting a nod from another royal commentator if it was the phrase. I mean, what's interesting is, well --

AMANPOUR: But I want to know who did that -- who's given for instance, to the Prime Minister. Do we know the exact hour that she died?

FOSTER: We'll find out in time. The prime minister would have -- I'm sure been informed straightaway, that would have been a priority. Prince Philip's codename was Forth Bridge. He was the Duke of Edinburgh. And Forth Bridge is the famous bridge in Scotland.

AMANPOUR: It's interesting. It's really interesting. The way they plan it meticulously with their code name in years of planning.

FOSTER: The other thing is that each element of this London Bridge has a code name as well. So this will have a code name, as well, this procession to Edinburgh. You can see the people lining up there. These are isolated parts of Scotland, not -- you know, to me, it feels like everyone's coming out. I mean, there's people all along the routes.

And when you consider how many people live along this route, apart from the major sort of towns and, you know, Aberdeen obviously, later on, there's not, you know, huge amounts of people live there, but the streets seem relatively full.

AMANPOUR: Yes. Max and Don, it reminds me a little bit the last great, long procession of a coffin that I remember the pictures of, not the actual reality was in 1968, when Robert Kennedy's coffin was carried by special train from New York to Washington to lie again in ceremony at the Cathedral in Washington. And the pictures from that time, there were still pictures mostly. And actually, you needed to see them from inside the train.

The faces of the people bidding farewell to then, you know, Senator Robert Kennedy, who was assassinated, he was running to be president in 1968. And, you know, his brother, the President John Kennedy, had been assassinated just seven years before.

And this imagery of this leader, who was making his last journey at that time, just like the Queen is making her last journey past her people and the faces on all those people who turned out will be there for the ages. And I wonder if there are cameras in the cortege or some people able to capture those close ups as well because that is for the ages.

LEMON: Yes. I want everyone to stand by here. This is the beginning of the final journey of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. You're watching CNN. We'll be right back.