The Lying-in-State of Her Majesty the Queen was widely hailed in September as a triumph. The organisation was slick, the tributes were moving, the crowds respectful and the queue deftly managed. But it seems that the otherwise flawless ceremony had one misstep: the impact of all those thousands of visitors on the floor of Westminster Hall, the oldest remaining part of the original Palace of Westminster.

Steerpike hears whispers of discontent among the House authorities about the management of the 180 year-old Yorkstone floor during the recent Lying-in-State. To allow for an estimated 250,000 mourners, a carpet was glued down onto Westminster Hall’s floor to lessen the impact of all that continuous footfall. And now some fear it has left permanent damage in the ancient structure. A House of Lords spokesperson told Mr S:

As a consequence of the high-level continuous footfall through Westminster Hall during the lying-in-state some delamination to the Yorkstone floor has occurred. It has exposed some areas of bare stone that will blend in with the surrounding areas over time. This does not present a structural risk.

Let’s hope that’s all there is to it…

QOSHE - Lying-in-State leaves its mark on parliament - Steerpike
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Lying-in-State leaves its mark on parliament

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28.11.2022

The Lying-in-State of Her Majesty the Queen was widely hailed in September as a triumph. The organisation was slick, the tributes were moving, the crowds respectful and the queue deftly managed. But it seems that the otherwise flawless ceremony had one misstep: the impact of all those thousands........

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