After 12 days of solemn tributes to Elizabeth II, the United Kingdom returned to normality on Tuesday, with the end of national mourning and the return to reality of a country facing crisis and a changing monarchy.
The flags of the official buildings, at half-staff since the queen died on September 8 at the age of 96 at her Scottish residence in Balmoral, were flying high again.
For almost two weeks, London and the Scottish capital, Edinburgh, were the scene of pompous ceremonies: from the proclamation of the new King Charles III to the solemn funeral procession that took the monarch to her last resting place in Windsor, where she was buried next to her parents and her husband.
Their traditional rituals and colorful medieval uniforms transported the country, and the world he watched hooked on television, to an almost unreal time.
But although the British royal family will remain in mourning for seven more days, the national mourning decreed by the government ended on Tuesday.
London launched a gigantic clean-up operation after the “funeral of the century”, held at Westminster Abbey, and which brought together nearly a million people in the streets, according to police estimates.
Provisional data, on the other hand, estimated at “more than 250 thousand” the people “who passed through Parliament,” said the Minister of Culture, Michelle Donelan, to Sky News, referring to the burning chapel installed for five days in Westminster Hall, who saw heartfelt expressions of emotion and kilometric queues for entrance.
high cost of living
After the end of the national mourning, the executive also resumes its activity.
Prime Minister Liz Truss, appointed by Elizabeth II just two days before her death, traveled to New York on Monday night to attend the UN General Assembly, where she will reaffirm Britain’s unwavering support for Russia-invaded Ukraine.
The new conservative leader, who succeeds the controversial Boris Johnson, must also seek solutions to the pressing crisis in the United Kingdom due to the cost of living.
His finance minister, Kwasi Kwarteng, will present an economic plan this Friday against the consequences of a 9.9% inflation driven by energy prices.
Changes in the monarchy?
The heartfelt popular emotion for the disappearance of a monarch who after 70 years on the throne seemed almost eternal, put on hold for a few days a social discontent that is now returning.
A train conductors’ strike, postponed after the death of Isabel II, will resume next week, threatening to plunge the country into chaos from October 1 to 5.
In addition, many are wondering about the cost of the grandiose state funeral that brought together hundreds of world leaders in London, from US President Joe Biden to Emperor Naruhito of Japan, and other tributes.
With the arrival to the throne of Carlos III, 73, less popular than his mother but determined to modernize the monarchy, changes in the institution and its finances are expected.
Months ago he had announced his intention to limit himself, his spouse and the princes of Wales -William and Catherine along with their three young children- a royal family currently very extensive, which multiplies spending and scandals.
No date yet, these and other modernizations will seek to reconquer some in a complex country, made up of four nations, three of which -Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales- saw the calls for independence driven by the death of Elizabeth II.