Royal guard faints and falls while protecting Queen Elizabeth’s coffin

Mourners gasped as the guard hit the deck as he was holding a vigil next to the late monarch’s casket

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A royal guard fainted and fell face-first onto the ground as he was protecting Queen Elizabeth’s coffin on Wednesday.

Mourners gasped as the guard hit the deck as he was holding a vigil next to the late monarch’s casket at London’s Westminster Hall, following the queen’s death last Thursday at age 96.

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Two police officers rushed to the guard’s aid.

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It occurred as a set of guards were starting to swap duties in a changeover.

The queen’s coffin is on a catafalque, a raised platform, at Westminster Hall, where guards from the Sovereign’s Bodyguard, the Household Division, and Yeoman Warders of the Tower of London are keeping watch 24 hours a day.

The late royal’s casket arrived at Westminster Hall in a royal procession at 3 pm on Wednesday, and an estimated one million mourners are expected to queue in an attempt to pay their respects in person by walking past the queen’s coffin as she lies in state until her funeral on Monday morning.

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Elizabeth’s funeral has been made a bank holiday in the UK and more than four billion people are expected to tune into broadcasts across the world – more than half of the 7.97 billion population on Earth – as the monarch is laid to rest.

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Around 500 world leaders and dignitaries have been invited to the funeral, which will take place at London’s Westminster Abbey.

Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and their Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau have all confirmed their attendance for the service.

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US President Joe Biden and French President Emmanuel Macron will also travel to the UK to attend the funeral.

What’s more, former UK Prime Ministers Boris Johnson, Theresa May, David Cameron, Gordon Brown, Sir Tony Blair and Sir John Major have all been invited, as has current Prime Minister Liz Truss, who met the queen in Scotland shortly before her passing.

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