Queen’s grandchildren hold vigil: what time did it start, who was there, how long did it last, is it on TV?

Queen Elizabeth II is lying in state at Westminster Hall until Monday

The Queen’s grandchildren stood guard around her coffin in London this evening, hours after their parents held an emotional vigil in the Palace of Westminster.

The Duke of Sussex joined his brother the Prince of Wales in wearing uniform in Westminster Hall, ahead of Elizabeth II’s state funeral on Monday (19 September).

Harry, who saw action on the front line during two tours of duty in Afghanistan, has previously been denied the chance to wear his military uniform at events as he publicly mourns, because he is no longer a working royal.

But royal sources say the King has decided his youngest son can wear uniform for the vigil, saying he will stand at the foot of the coffin, with William at the head.

Here is all you need to know:

When is the grandchildren’s vigil?

The vigil took place today (17 September).

An exact time for the vigil has not been confirmed, however the vigil held by King Charles III took place at 7.30pm on Friday (16 September).

It will take place at Westminster Hall, where the Queen is currently lying in state.

The grandchildren began to arrive around 5.50pm for the vigil.

It lasted for 15 minutes until around 6.20pm.

Queen Elizabeth II 's grandchildren (clockwise from front centre) the Prince of Wales, Peter Phillips, James, Viscount Severn, Princess Eugenie, the Duke of Sussex (not seen), Princess Beatrice, Lady Louise Windsor and Zara Tindall hold a vigil beside the coffin of their grandmother as it lies in state on the catafalque in Westminster Hall, at the Palace of Westminster, London. Picture date: Saturday September 17, 2022.

Who attended the vigil?

All of the Queen’s eight grandchildren attended the vigil today (17 September).

Prince William and Prince Harry were both be in attendance.

Zara Tindall and Peter Philips are the children of the Princess Royal, Anne, also attended.

Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie are the daughters of the Duke of York, and they also went to the vigil.

The Earl of Wessex’s children, Lady Louise Windsor and her brother Viscount Severn attended.

The Prince of Wales, flaked by Zara and Peter stoddo at the head of the coffim,

The Duke of Sussex stood at the foot of the coffin with Beatrice and Eugenie.

Lady Louise Windsor and her brother Viscount Severn were at the middle of the coffin.

How long will the vigil last for?

The grandchildren’s vigil lasted around 20 minutes.

Queen Elizabeth II's grandchildren the Prince of Wales, Peter Phillips, Zara Tindall, James, Viscount Severn, Lady Louise Windsor, Princess Eugenie, Princess Beatrice and the Duke of Sussex depart after holding a vigil beside the coffin of their grandmother as it lies in state on the catafalque in Westminster Hall, at the Palace of Westminster, London. Picture date: Saturday September 17, 2022.

What happened during the vigil?

The Prince of Wales led his brother the Duke of Sussex, as well as his cousins Zara Tindall and Peter Philips, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie and Lady Louise Windsor and Viscount Severn into Westminster Hall.

William was followed in by Harry, with the Duke of York’s daughters, the Earl of Wessex’s children and the Princess Royal’s children behind them.

The Queen’s eight grandchildren looked deep in thought as they stood guard around her coffin for a vigil in Westminster Hall.

The Prince of Wales was flanked by his cousins Zara Tindall and Peter Philips, while the Duke of Sussex stood with Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, as Lady Louise Windsor and her brother Viscount Severn were at the middle of the coffin.

They had their heads bowed as members of the public filed past them.

William wore the Blues and Royals No 1 uniform, the Garter Sash, the Garter Star, the Golden, Diamond and Platinum Jubilee Medals and RAF pilot wings.

The Duke of Sussex wore a Blues and Royals No 1 Uniform, KCVO Neck Order and Star, Afghanistan Operational Service Medal, Golden, Diamond and Platinum Jubilee medals and Army Pilot Wings.

Other family members watched on from the sidelines during the vigil, among them The Earl and Countess of Wessex.

The Prince of Wales led his brother and cousins out of Westminster Hall as the vigil ended.

William was followed Zara Tindall and Peter Philips, Lady Louise Windsor and Viscount Severn, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie and the Duke of Sussex.

Will it be on TV?

BBC One carried coverage of the vigil last night - which was known as the Princes’ vigil - and it was made available on BBC iPlayer as well after the ritual finished.

Was Prince Harry able to wear his military uniform?

All four of the Queen’s children appeared on military uniform on Friday for the vigil.

The Duke of York was granted special dispensation to wear his uniform despite not being a working Royal.

Prince William has been wearing his military uniform during ceremonial events this week.

Harry, who saw action on the front line during two tours of duty in Afghanistan, has previously been denied the chance to wear his military uniform as he publicly mourns, because he is no longer a working royal.

But royal sources say the King has decided his youngest son can wear uniform for the vigil, saying he will stand at the foot of the coffin, with William at the head.

Despite being a former Army officer, Harry has been in civilian dress for official events, including walking behind his grandmother’s coffin on Wednesday when it was carried to Westminster Hall for lying in state.