Liz Truss and her ministers held a minute’s silence at a special cabinet in Downing Street this morning where they shared memories of Elizabeth II.
The meeting came ahead of tributes to the Queen in the House of Commons and before Ms Truss’s first audience with the new King Charles III, due to take place at Buckingham Palace on Friday afternoon.
Ms Truss’s official spokesperson said that ministers at this morning’s meeting “paid tribute to Her Majesty and shared memories of her lifetime of service”.
He declined to reveal details of what he said were private comments by cabinet ministers, but said they included “fond recollections of their own encounters” with the monarch.
Cabinet agreed its unanimous support for King Charles III.
After the meeting of full cabinet, chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Nadhim Zahawi chaired the first of a daily series of ministerial-level meetings due to take place on a daily basis in the days leading up to the Queen’s funeral.
The meetings will oversee the operational details of the vast and meticulous plan for marking the Queen’s passing in an appropriate manner.
Taking part were leader of the Commons Penny Mordaunt, defence secretary Ben Wallace and secretaries of state from other departments involved in the mourning process, as well as operational police chiefs and representatives of the Royal Household.
The Cabinet Office this morning issued guidance to members of the public planning to pay their respects to the Queen, warning that parts of central London will be shut down as arrangements are put in place.
“We recognise that many people will travel to Buckingham Palace and other Royal residences as a mark of their respect,” said the Cabinet Office in a statement.
“We expect large crowds, which can pose risks to public safety. Those who do travel are asked to follow any instructions given to them by stewards and the police.
“We expect significant crowding and delays on some public transport. The public should check ahead and plan accordingly.
“As you would expect a number of organisations will now be making practical preparations including contingency planning for the state funeral and related events. Access to some areas, especially in central London, will be restricted, with road closures and diversions that will cause delays to vehicles and pedestrians.
“Those who wish to lay floral tributes near Royal Residences in London, Windsor, Edinburgh, Balmoral and Sandringham are asked to do so only in designated areas, as directed by stewards. Further details will be made available shortly.”