Thousands turn up to greet Prince and Princess of Wales on visit to Sandringham

Thousands of people met the Prince and Princess of Wales at Sandringham, reports Rebecca Barry

Thousands of well-wishers turned out to see the Prince and Princess of Wales look at a sea of flowers left for the late Queen by the gates of the Sandringham Estate on Thursday.

The couple travelled to Norfolk as one of several visits being made by members of the Royal Family around the UK.

Scores of people gathered behind metal barriers to see the royal couple, who stayed for almost an hour speaking to those paying tributes, taking time to read messages.

Prince William told mourners that nothing could really prepare him for his grandmother's death last Thursday.

"Doing the walk yesterday was challenging, it brought back a few memories," he said.

"It is kind of one of these moments where you think to yourself, I have prepared myself for this but I am not that prepared.

"It is this weird king of thing... because we knew she was 96."

'I am not that prepared,' the Prince of Wales told well-wishers

Receptionist Jane Wells, 54, of Long Sutton in Lincolnshire, told Prince William how proud his mother, the late Princess Diana, who died in 1997, would have been of him.

"I said how proud his mother would have been of him, and he said how hard it was yesterday because it brought back memories of his mother's funeral," she said.

Caroline Barwick-Walters, 66, of Neath in Wales, added: "He told us how difficult it was yesterday, how it brought back memories of walking behind his mother's coffin."

Ms Barwick-Walters said she told Prince William "thank you for sharing your grief with the nation", and that he replied "she was everybody's grandmother".

Meanwhile the Princess Royal, accompanied by her husband Sir Tim Laurence, have been visiting Glasgow City Chambers, to meet representatives of organisations of which the Queen was patron.

Princess Anne was chatted to well-wishers and spoke with mourners outside the City Chambers in George Square.

Princess Anne looked at tributes left for the Queen during a visit to Glasgow's City Chambers

The Earl and Countess of Wessex are also visiting Manchester today, and they were invited by the Dean of Manchester, the Very Rev Rogers Govender, and the Bishop of Manchester, David Walker, to each light a candle at the city's cathedral.

They were shown photographs of the Queen’s last visit to Manchester cathedral, to mark the 600th anniversary celebration of the collegiate church in July 2021.

Earlier, city council leader Bev Craig showed Edward and Sophie similar books of condolences opened at the library’s reading room, where they also looked at a number of cards written by local children.

Members of the public have flocked to the cathedral since the monarch’s death to sign a book of condolence and light a candle.

The Earl and Countess of Wessex have lit candles at Manchester Cathedral in memory of the Queen

The royal couple then moved on to St Ann’s Square which, in May 2017, was filled with bouquets of flowers and heartfelt messages and tributes in the wake of the Manchester Arena bombing in which 22 people were killed.

Elsewhere, in London, mourners are queuing overnight for the Queen’s Lying in State while the King is set to take a day away from public duties.

Members of the public can pay their respects to the late monarch’s coffin for 24 hours a day at Westminster Hall, with queues along Lambeth Bridge and Albert Embankment continuing to flow all night.

The Queen’s coffin continues to be guarded at all hours by units from the Sovereign’s Bodyguard, the Household Division or Yeoman Warders of the Tower of London.

One of the guards suddenly collapsed overnight, with nearby officials quickly rushing to his aid after he appeared to faint.

The queue route for mourners wishing to see the Queen Lying in State at Westminster Hall. Credit: ITV News

Metropolitan Police officers, volunteers and stewards are managing the queue while toilets and water fountains are provided at various points along the route.

People waiting in line are being given a coloured and numbered wristband to manage the queue.

Wednesday night the first time people could pay their respects to the Queen, after the ancient hall opened at 5pm on Wednesday.

Watch ITV News' continuous live coverage of the Queen Lying in State in Westminster Hall

On Wednesday afternoon, the King led the Royal Family in a public display of homage by walking behind the Queen’s coffin, during a procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall.

Her coffin will continue to lie in state there until the state funeral on Monday.

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack and Defence Secretary Ben Wallace were among those who stood solemnly in dark uniforms on Thursday at the raised platform on which the coffin rests.

As hundreds of ordinary people of all ages filed past the coffin of the long-reigning monarch, many wiped their eyes with tissues.

Some bowed, some curtsied and some simply took a moment to look at the extraordinary scene.

Thousands waiting in queues snaking through Victoria Tower Gardens on their way to Westminster Hall

Former prime minister Theresa May and her husband Philip were among those paying their respects to the Queen at Westminster Hall.

On Wednesday evening, King Charles returned to his Highgrove home, in Gloucestershire, for a private day of reflection.

Elsewhere, King’s Counsel will take part in wreath laying after the death of the Queen.

King Charles III arrives at Westminster Hall Credit: Phil Noble/PA

Preparations for Her Majesty's state funeral were well under way outside Windsor Castle on Thursday. Railings roughly a mile long now line either side of the famous Long Walk leading up to the castle. Tents, speakers and portaloos are also being put in place while stalls advertising coffee and refreshments have been set up intermittently along the road. The Queen will be interred alongside her husband the Duke of Edinburgh in St George’s Chapel, within the walls of Windsor Castle, on Monday.

The remarkable life of the Queen remembered and the King's inaugural speech analysed in our latest episodes of What You Need To Know