In London's Trafalgar Square, which for decades was at the centre of anti-apartheid protests, there was a fitting focus for tributes to Mandela. Hundreds queued up to sign a book of condolence at the South African high commission.
And, as ITV's Special Correspondent Rageh Omaar reports, many also remembered the leading role Britain played in helping end South Africa's racist regime.
Six-year-old Emma Williams was invited to sit on Nelson Mandela's lap when he visited Wales in June 1998. Now 22, she speaks to ITV News.
Nelson Mandela touched aspects of British public life in a way that very few other international figures have managed.