Thousands pass Queen's coffin as she lies in state

STORY: Mourners queued for hours through the night to see Queen Elizabeth’s coffin – as she lay in state in London’s Westminster Hall.

Officials expect a whopping seven-hundred and fifty thousand people to view it before the state funeral on Monday.

The queen's death, at the age of 96 on Thursday, has plunged Britain into mourning for a monarch who reigned for 70 years.

Many wanted to pay their final respects - including Ruth who was born when the Queen came to the throne:

“It's like closure. Our queen, she’s been laid to rest. She's at peace. And she meant everything because she had been Queen all of our lives. We hadn't known anything else. And now she is gone.”

The line stretched for several miles along the River Thames in London and many people waited overnight.

Anne was one of them:

“I queued from 10 o’clock last night, so I slept on the Embankment last night. There are people here because they want to honour her in whatever way.”

Queen Elizabeth's coffin was flown back to London late on Tuesday from Scotland - where it had been since her death at her Scottish summer holiday home Balmoral Castle.

Ian – a reserve army officer – teared up as he thought about what he would say when he finally made it to the front of the queue:

“I was here for the lying in state for the Queen Elizabeth, the Queen mother, about 20 years ago. I must admit, I can't remember if I said anything, but I do know I bowed and it will be similar this time. We'll have to move past in an orderly fashion, quite quickly so the maximum number of people can pass and pay our respects in our individual manners. I haven't decided yet what I'll say…”

Monday’s state funeral will be an enormous full-scale ceremonial procession attended by many world leaders, royalty and heads of state.