About four billion people on Monday viewed the televised proceedings of the state funeral held for Britain’s longest reigning monarch, Elizabeth Alexandra Windsor, officially known as Queen Elizabeth II, who died on September 8, 2022, at age 96.
The event had been projected to smash other TV records, one of which was the opening ceremony of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, which had one of boxing’s greatest heavyweights, Muhammad Ali, given the honour of lighting the Olympic flame.
The sporting event was viewed by 3.6 billion people. Others were the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana in 1981 (One billion viewers), Live Aid in 1985 (1.9 billion viewers), the funeral service held for the late Princess Diana in 1997 (2.5 billion viewers) and the Live8 concerts in 2005 (Two billion viewers).
Most television stations like the BBC, ITV and CNN dedicated time to airing the Queen’s funeral with a large sum of the four billion viewers accessing through the internet.
The crowd, according to Sky News, which gathered around the royal palaces and in central London to pay their last tribute to Queen Elizabeth II was about a million.
Daily Mail reported that about two million people lined the streets to watch the Queen’s coffin make its final journey.
Behind the coffin were the Queen’s children, King Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward. Behind them were Prince William, Prince Harry and Peter Phillips, and other members of her family.
About 2,000 people, including royalty, world leaders, politicians and members of the royal household attended the funeral at Windsor Castle. The list was reduced to 800 guests during the committal ceremony held at St George’s Chapel.
The world leaders who graced the event included members of the Commonwealth, Heads of State, Governors-General, Prime Ministers, and foreign royal families.
BBC News reported that no fewer than 100 presidents and heads of government across the globe were reported present at the funeral, including United States President Joe Biden and wife, Jill Biden; Polish President Andrzej Duda and wife, Agata Kornhauser-Duda; French President Emmanuel Macron and wife, Brigitte; UK Prime Minister Liz Truss and husband, Hugh O’Leary; German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier amongst others.
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