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Cwmbran couple witness man appear to ‘grab the Royal Standard’ covering the Queen’s coffin

A Cwmbran couple were in Westminster Hall paying their respects to the late Queen Elizabeth II last night when a man ran out of the queue and ‘grabbed the Royal Standard’ that was covering her coffin.

He was quickly tackled to the floor by police officers but the experience left Mark and Corinne Ward-Jones, from Fairwater, shocked after entering the hall following a 14-hour queue.

The story has made news across the world this morning. Mark and Corinne Ward-Jones, from Fairwater, joined the queue at 8.05am on Friday morning.

The pair said they had a wonderful time in the queue making friends with the people around them. They even set up a WhatsApp group to keep in touch with each other and share messages in the future.

Mark said: “It was a very long tiring day, where we met some amazing people in the queue. It was all worth it to be able to pause briefly next to the Queen’s coffin and offer a respectful bow to her for everything she did for the nation.

“You see it on TV,  but just to be there was awe-inspiring. The first thing I saw was the coffin and then I saw one of the ceremonial guards looking down. It looked like something surreal, to see this occasion. to actually be there. I thought ‘I’m entering somewhere really special, historic’.

a couple in a park
The pair at Southwark Park as they left the holding area to join the main queue

“It was magical. We went from laughing and joking with the people we met in the queue to silence. We went up some steps, turned to our left and looked down and it was just unbelievable.

“We stood at the top about to go down and then all hell broke loose. Suddenly some guy lunged across and grabbed the Royal Standard and it lifted up. I don’t know if he was trying to pull it off or lift it up.

“This is how professional the guards and Beefeaters were, they didn’t flinch, they were like statues, but the police were on him in a second. They wrestled him to the ground and dragged him out within in a minute.

“You could hear a sharp intake of breath in unison. Everyone still wanted to stay respectful. There was no screaming. My wife burst out crying, she was in bits.

“I was dumbstruck, what am I witnessing? My wife thought he was trying to pull the coffin off. Without realising I was stood for seconds with my hand over my mouth. What am I witnessing here?

“It went from calm, silent and respectful to something you would not expect to happen in a million years. All respect to everybody there. The police dealt with it instantly. It was all over in a minute.

“We decided we were not going to let one idiot spoil it. I waited 14 hours for this I’m not going to let one idiot ruin this moment and the enormity of the occasion. They say you have to keep things moving but I stopped and paid my respects.

“It is a memory that will last a lifetime and I’m glad we were able to be part of this momentous event in history.”

Corinne said: “The staff and volunteers were brilliant at helping people follow the route and giving out water and blankets at the end.”

The Met told ITV: “At 22:00hrs on Friday 16 September officers from the Met’s Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection Command detained a man in Westminster Hall following a disturbance. He was arrested for an offence under the Public Order Act and is currently in custody.”

group of people by river thams
Mark and Corinne (red scarf) with people they chatted to in the queue




Posted inNews

Cwmbran couple witness man appear to ‘grab the Royal Standard’ covering the Queen’s coffin

man and woman outside buckingham palace
Mark and Corinne Ward-Jones visited Buckingham Palace and later left flowers in Hyde Park on Thursday