The speech the Queen gave the night before her mother’s funeral: Read full transcript from 2002

‘I count myself fortunate that my mother was blessed with a long and happy life,’ the monarch said

Ellie Abraham@ellieabraham
Friday 16 April 2021 12:50
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On Saturday 17 April, the Queen will attend the funeral of her husband Prince Philip at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle.

The funeral will be televised and will be attended in person by just 30 guests due to coronavirus restrictions.

The last royal funeral to be televised was that of the Queen Mother who died at the age of 101 on 30 March 2002 - her funeral took place on 9 April that year.

From Windsor Castle on the eve of her mother’s funeral service, Queen Elizabeth II addressed the nation to thank the country for their support following the death.

This is the full transcript of her speech:

Ever since my beloved mother died over a week ago I have been deeply moved by the outpouring of affection which has accompanied her death.

My family and I always knew what she meant for the people of this country and the special place she occupied in the hearts of so many here, in the Commonwealth and in other parts of the world.

But the extent of the tribute that huge numbers of you have paid my mother in the last few days has been overwhelming. I have drawn great comfort from so many individual acts of kindness and respect.

Over the years I have met many people who have had to cope with family loss, sometimes in the most tragic of circumstances.

So I count myself fortunate that my mother was blessed with a long and happy life. She had an infectious zest for living, and this remained with her until the very end. I know too that her faith was always a great strength to her.

At the ceremony tomorrow I hope that sadness will blend with a wider sense of thanksgiving, not just for her life but for the times in which she lived — a century for this country and the Commonwealth not without its trials and sorrows, but also one of extraordinary progress, full of examples of courage and service as well as fun and laughter.

This is what my mother would have understood because it was the warmth and affection of people everywhere which inspired her resolve, dedication and enthusiasm for life.

I thank you for the support you are giving me, and my family, as we come to terms with her death and the void she has left in our midst.

I thank you also from my heart for the love you gave her during her life and the honour you now give her in death.

May God bless you all.

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