The death of Queen Elizabeth has rocked the UK. The royal family arranged a 12-day period of mourning along with a funeral procession for people to pay respects to the Queen. It brought thousands out of their homes and in the streets outside Westminster Abbey, where she was laid to rest. Many of them chose to stay there. They refused to go home until they glanced the Queen’s coffin.
In response to this, the officials present got them blankets. Thousands of people, each with a free blanket to sleep a little with sorrow in their hearts as the queen sleeps forever. At the same time, there are many on the roads and in bus stops sleeping. Not because of the funeral procession, but because they got no where else to lay their heads.
Homelessness has increased by 38% in the UK since the last 12 years. The current estimate is 227,000 people. The estimate is rough at best because pinning down homelessness is quite tough but it does give an idea. With the current housing rate being over 500,000 pounds in London, homelessness is only likely to increase.
There is no official record as of now of the spending. Britain’s culture secretary Michel Donelan said it has not been assessed yet. But he and many others in Britain believe that the money was well-spent. The thousands who came out of their homes to mourn the queen are supposed proof that it was.
That may or may not be true, because among the people were also protestors who used the opportunity to speak out against monarchy. Two of them were arrested by the police during the procession. People were also mad that flights were cancelled for the mourning.
But when it comes to the queen, every authority in the UK will only allow reverence and mourning in the eyes of the people. At least during the time of the funeral. Only time will tell if people will be allowed to go on the streets to protest monarchy in the future.
A former royal security told New York Post he thinks the security alone might cost $7.5 million dollars. The cost might probably have been more than the security for the Olympics. This is still a modest estimate, since the William-Kate wedding security cost around $7 million and many more dignitaries attended the queen’s funeral than the wedding.
Apart from that, there also the fact of rising cost of living since the time of the wedding which affects the funeral costs directly. Almost 1.3 million people in the UK might end up in poverty by this winter because of the rising costs. At least the ones among these who chose to attend the funeral procession don’t have to worry about blankets. That’s one less of a bother. They will sleep hungry but at least they sleep in a blanket.
This would not be so infuriating if the funeral was not funded by the public tax and was funded by the millions the queen has inherited. Come winter, all the reverence and the feelings of sorrow will fade away. The feeling of hunger among the people will replace it. That might lead to some really unpleasant days for the monarchy. For now, that’s a discussion the monarchy has successfully avoided.