Windsor 'exceptionally busy' as thousands travel to pay their respects to the Queen

Thousands have been visiting the town to pay their respects to the Queen. Credit: PA

People travelling to Windsor to pay their respects to the Queen are being warned that the local area is 'exceptionally busy'.

Thousands have visited the town since the death of Her Majesty the Queen was announced on Thursday, with many bringing flowers and messages of condolence for the Royal Family.

Roads and rail services have been extremely busy, with demand expected to remain high until the day of the Queen's funeral, which will take place on Monday 19 September.

Thames Valley Police has warned drivers to expect delays and says it is patrolling the local area to ensure anyone visiting Windsor is safe.

In a statement the force said it was:"actively patrolling the local area" and using "ANPR technology to monitor people using the road network to make sure people are visiting Windsor for the right reasons."

"The roads in and out of Windsor are exceptionally busy and officers are working with partners to ensure the safety of everyone using the road network." It added.

Meanwhile The Rail Delivery Group, which represents rail companies, has said will not be possible to view both the funeral in London and travel to Windsor by train, where Her Majesty the Queen will be laid to rest.

It is urging people to plan to view one or the other and allow plenty of time to travel to either location.

People make their way along the Long Walk towards Cambridge gate outside Windsor Castle. Credit: PA

As crowds continue to build this morning (Monday 12 September) many spoke fondly of Her Majesty the Queen and the Royal Family.

Dogwalker Ellie Skelton, 47, who lives near Windsor and met the Queen numerous times, said locals cherished the fact that the royals would “joke with you” and were “never pompous”.

Ms Skelton said her children performed as part of a choir for the monarch at St George’s Chapel.

It was at the chapel her father once bumped into the Duke of Edinburgh who “put him at ease” when he became flustered.

Speaking outside Windsor Castle, Ms Skelton said: “My dad on one of the Mother’s Day services, he came out to get some fresh air and the Duke of Edinburgh was outside and my dad just got so flustered and started to do a curtsy.

“They did have a little joke together and he’ll never forget it.

“He was holding my mother’s flower, because mothers are given daffodils at the service, and the Duke of Edinburgh said, ‘you don’t look like a mother!’.

“The fact they would joke with you and they were never pompous is really special – he put my dad at ease straight away.”

People view flowers which have been placed next to Cambridge gate outside Windsor Castle. Credit: PA

Michelle Hill, 46, recalled the “exciting” moment she saw the then Prince of Wales when Charles visited the Royal Shakespeare Company decades ago.

Ms Hill, who paid respects to the Queen at Windsor Castle on Monday with her two daughters, said of the theatre trip: “There were lots of Jaguars and he waved as he went past.

“I think he’s got a very difficult job because he’s got big shoes to fill and he’s got to fight a lot of negative public opinion.”

Ms Hill said she was not laying flowers, and would donate the money she would have spent on them to the Windsor food bank instead, saying: “The flowers are lovely, but they will die and there are people who need dinner.”

Paying tribute to the Queen, Ms Hill said: “She was just lovely. I remember getting dressed up for her Silver Jubilee, and at all the events she was just very calm, warm, lovely.”