Princess Margaret’s beloved daughter Lady Sarah Chatto looked emotional as she attended the service at Westminster Hall following the Queen’s procession today.
The Queen’s only niece, who remained close to Her Majesty and Prince Philip following her mother Margaret’s death in 2002, joined other members of the royal family to pay their respects to the late monarch.
Dressed in an all-black ensemble, Sarah, also the daughter of Anthony Armstrong-Jones, 1st Earl Snowdon, was accompanied by one of her sons, Arthur Chatto, 23.
Sarah, who is married to Daniel Chatto, was once described by a royal insider as sharing a ‘sense of loyalty, fun, duty and the ridiculous’ with the Queen.
‘The Queen adores Sarah and seeks out her company as often as possible. She is her absolute favourite younger royal,’ they said. ‘They are hugely at ease in each other’s company. Much giggling can be heard when they are together. They share a sense of loyalty, fun, duty and the ridiculous.’
Solemn members of the Royal Family gathered today as they accompanied the Queen for her poignant final journey from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall, where she will lie in state underneath its ancient hammer-beam roof.
The Queen’s ‘favourite royal’ Lady Sarah Chatto (pictured with her son) made an appearance at the Westminster Hall service for Her Majesty
Lady Sarah Chatto, pictured here with her 23-year-old son Arthur Chatto, who is training to be an officer for the Royal Marines, attended the service at Westminster Hall today (pictured)
Lady Sarah Chatto (pictured left with her son Arthur Chatto), 58, the daughter of the Queen’s late sister Princess Margaret and Anthony Armstrong-Jones, 1st Earl Snowdon, is one of the more low-key royals, and one who is believed to have held a very special place in the monarch’s heart
Queen Elizabeth II (left) is believed to have adored her niece Lady Sarah Chatto (right), with the pair said to share a ‘sense of loyalty, fun, duty and the ridiculous’ (pictured here together in the grounds of Royal Lodge, Windsor Great Park)
Lady Sarah Chatto was born in 1964 — the last royal baby born at a palace rather than a hospital — within weeks of cousins Prince Edward, Lady Helen Windsor and James Ogilvy.
The Queen has been described as a ‘surrogate mother’ to the siblings and was particularly close to Lady Sarah, who is understood to remind Her Majesty of her late sister.
And the younger woman came to show her respects for Her Majesty today, attending the Westminster Hall service with her 23-year-old son Arthur Chatto, who is training to be an officer for the Royal Marines.
Also present at the event were senior members of the Firm including King Charles, his three siblings and his sons Prince William and Prince Harry, and wife Camilla, the Queen Consort.
Other attendees included the Princess of Wales, Duchess of Sussex, Zara Tindall, Mike Tindall, and Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie among others.
The service followed the procession of the Queen’s coffin from Buckingham Palace to the Hall. Her Majesty’s children, King Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, followed the casket on foot during its 38-minute journey, alongside Prince William and Prince Harry.
King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla led members of the royal family at the ceremony this afternoon (pictured)
The Queen’s grandchildren – including Lady Louise and Princess Beatrice – appear emotional as they attend the service today in London
Tearing up: James, Viscount Severn and Lady Louise Windsor pay their respects in The Palace of Westminster
Other members of the royal family including Zara Tindall, with her husband Mike, Princess Eugenie, with her husband Jack Brooksbank, and Princess Beatrice, with her husband Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi also attended
Peter Phillips, the Duke of Sussex, the Prince of Wales, the Earl of Wessex, the Earl of Snowdon, the Duchess of Sussex, the Princess Royal, King Charles III, the Duke of York, the Princess of Wales and the Countess of Wessex follow the bearer party carrying the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II into Westminster Hall, London
Camilla, Queen Consort, Catherine, Princess of Wales, Sophie, Countess of Wessex, and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex at the coffin procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall
The Queen is placed in Westminster Hall to lie in state for the nation to pay their respects
Lady Sarah’s brother, the Earl of Snowdon, followed behind with the Queen’s grandson Peter Phillips, Princess Anne’s husband Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence and the Queen’s cousin the Duke of Gloucester.
The Queen’s coffin entered Westminster Hall as the choir of Westminster Abbey and the choir of His Majesty’s Chapel Royal, St James’s Palace, sang Psalm 139. The Archbishop of Canterbury then read the opening prayer, which the King led the royals in reciting.
Her Majesty’s coffin will lie in state in Westminster Hall underneath its ancient hammer-beam roof. The near 1,000-year-old building is where her father King George VI lay in state in 1952 and where the public could pass the coffin of her mother, the Queen Mother, in 2002.
More than one million people are expected to queue in central London for up to 35 hours to walk past her casket – but experts believe only 400,000 will make it inside meaning 600,000 people will be left disappointed.
Queen Elizabeth II arrives at Westminster Hall from Buckingham Palace for her lying in state
Her Majesty was carried on the gun carriage that had also borne her parents when they died 50 years apart
The Queen’s imperial state crown laid on top of a cushion, above her coffin, during the emotional funeral procession this afternoon
The King and his Queen Consort led the Royal Family into Westminster Hall
2.22pm: The gun carriage bearing the coffin of the late Queen Elizabeth II departs Buckingham Palace, transferring the coffin to The Palace of Westminster
The Prince of Wales, The Duke of Sussex, King Charles III, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York and the Earl of Wessex walk behind the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II, draped in the Royal Standard
Lady Sarah Chatto is the Queen’s only niece and likes to stay out of the limelight. However, she enjoys a close bond with the King, whom she has often spent time painting with at Balmoral.
Sarah was a chief bridesmaid at King Charles III’s wedding to Princess Diana and is godmother to Prince Harry. She is also godmother to to Prince Edward’s daughter Louise and the Duke of Gloucester’s daughter Rose.
She grew up at Kensington palace with her older brother David. Her parents divorced when she was just 13 and as a teen she went to Bedale school in Hampshire.
As an adult she met her actor and artist husband, Daniel Chatto, on the set of Heat and Dust, where she was working as a wardrobe assistant.
Camilla, Kate, Sophie and Meghan watch as the Queen’s coffin is carried into her resting place for the next four days
A sombre Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, stands during the service led by the Archbishop of Canterbury, left. Pictured right: Prince Harry looks at the ancient roof alongside Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, as they stand in Westminster Hall after participating in the procession of the coffin
Catherine, Princess of Wales and Britain’s Prince William, Prince of Wales reassure one another as they leave after a service for the reception of Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin at Westminster Hall
Britain’s King Charles III, Britain’s Prince William, Britain’s Princess Anne, salute the coffin. Prince Harry and Prince Andrew – no longer frontline royals, did not, bowing instead
The couple got married in July 1994 at a small service at St Stephen’s Walbrook church. The couple live in Kensington together and have two sons in Samuel, 25, and Arthur, 23. Both went at Eton and the University of Edinburgh.
Once her own children were grown up, Sarah frequently stayed with her aunt. Friends said she reminded the Queen of her younger sister Margaret, whom she desperately missed after her death in 2002.
Lady Sarah kept an eye on the Queen and reportedly worried she worked too hard. In a sign of her close relationship to the Queen, Lady Sarah was often photographed travelling with the monarch to church in Balmoral.
What happens after today?
– September 15:
Lying in state continues and a rehearsal is likely to take place for the state funeral procession.
– September 16:
The King and Queen Consort are expected to travel to Wales while lying in state continues.
– September 17-18:
The lying in state continues and heads of state will begin to arrive for the funeral.
Members of the public Me are invited to observe a one-minute silence at 8pm on Sunday to remember the Queen.
– September 19:
There will be a national bank holiday to allow as many people as possible to watch the Queen’s funeral.
Lying in state will continue until 6.30am.
The coffin will be taken in a grand military procession from the Palace of Westminster to Westminster Abbey for the state funeral.
Senior members of the family are expected to follow behind – just like they did for the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales and the Duke of Edinburgh.
The military will line the streets and also join the procession.
Heads of state, prime ministers and presidents, European royals and key figures from public life will be invited to gather in the abbey, which can hold a congregation of 2,000.
The service will be televised, and a national two minutes’ silence is expected to be held.
After the service, the coffin will be taken in procession from Westminster Abbey to Wellington Arch and then travel to Windsor.
Once there, the hearse will travel in procession to St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle via the Long Walk, after which a televised committal service will take place in St George’s Chapel.
Later in the evening, there will be a private interment service with senior members of the royal family.
The Queen’s final resting place will be the King George VI memorial chapel, an annex to the main chapel – where her mother and father were buried, along with the ashes of her sister, Princess Margaret.
Philip’s coffin will move from the Royal Vault to the memorial chapel to join the Queen’s.