Prince Edward says Queen's death leaves 'unimaginable void in all of our lives'

The Queen with Prince Edward at Buckingham Palace in 1998. Credit: PA

The Earl of Wessex says his family have been "overwhelmed by the tide of emotion" the public has shown in the wake of the death of his mother.

He said the Queen's death has "left an unimaginable void in all of our lives".

The monarch's youngest son said people "have no idea" how much the support means to them, as he revealed how taken aback they were by the volume of "love, admiration and respect" being shown for Her Majesty.

The Queen is Lying in State at Westminster Hall, where a continuous river of people has been flowing past her coffin to pay their respects since the doors opened on Wednesday."While it has been lovely to have spent time saying our own farewell privately at Balmoral, it is now time to allow others to be able to say their farewell," Prince Edward said in an emotional statement. “We have been overwhelmed by the tide of emotion that has engulfed us and the sheer number of people who have gone out of their way to express their own love, admiration and respect to such a very special and unique person who was always there for us.

"And now, we are there for her, united in grief. Thank you for your support, you have no idea how much it means."

Queen Elizabeth II holding her son Prince Edward in 1965. Credit: PA

Prince Edward went on to speak of the enjoyment he and his wife Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, have had from watching their two children spend time enjoying the sites and hobbies their grandparents loved.

“The Queen’s passing has left an unimaginable void in all our lives. Sophie and I have taken huge pleasure in seeing our James and Louise enjoying the places and activities that their grandparents loved so much," he said.

"Given that my mama let us spend so much time with her, I think she also rather enjoyed watching those passions blossom. Those times together, those happy memories, have now become massively precious to each and every one of us."

“May God bless Her Majesty and may her memory be long cherished even as the baton she has carried for these past 70 years now passes to the next generation and to my brother, Charles. Long live the King.”

The Earl and Countess of Wessex, with their children, Lady Louise and James, Viscount Severn. Credit: PA

The Earl and Countess of Wessex were seen today speaking with stewards and Crown Estate staff before laying flowers given to them by the crowd gathered outside Windsor Castle. The Countess of Wessex, dressed in black, placed the bouquets while Prince Edward smiled as he read some of the messages left for his mother.

At one point, one member of a group of nuns waiting behind a crash barrier clasped her hand and kissed it.

The pair had visited visited Manchester Cathedral on Thursday to light a candle in memory of the Queen.

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