Sophie Wessex inundated with armfuls of flowers as she and Edward step out for walkabout


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Sophie was handed armfuls of flowers from royal fans as she and Prince Edward went on a walkabout outside Buckingham Palace this afternoon. The Earl and Countess of Wessex stepped outside the royal residence in central London just before 3pm to meet the crowds gathered.

A cheer erupted as Edward and Sophie, who is said to have been like a second daughter to the late Queen, walked out of the gate.

The royal couple shook hands and chatted with well-wishers outside the palace, while the Countess was inundated with bunches of flowers including sunflowers and roses.

Sophie looked typically elegant in a black dress and she wore her blonde hair in curls. Edward, the late Queen’s youngest son, was smart in a suit.

Well-wishers could be heard telling Edward and Sophie “sorry for your loss”.

The Earl told those in the crowd: “I know that my mother would really appreciate this fantastic support”.

The walkabout comes after Edward joined his siblings King Charles, Princess Anne and Prince Andrew in holding a vigil around the late Queen’s coffin in Westminster Hall on Friday evening.

The four royals wore their military uniforms and were silent, motionless, with their heads bowed and hands clasped in front as they stood for just over 10 minutes as members of the public continued to file past for the lying in state.

Earlier on Friday, Edward paid a touching tribute to his “beloved mama”.

In a statement, he said: “As a family, we have grown up learning to share our parents, especially our beloved mama, with the nation, her realms and the Commonwealth.

“While it has been lovely to have spent time saying our own farewell privately at Balmoral, it is now time to allow others to be able to say their farewell.

“We have been overwhelmed by the tide of emotion that has engulfed us and the sheer number of people who have gone out of their way to express their own love, admiration and respect to such a very special and unique person who was always there for us.

“And now, we are there for her, united in grief. Thank you for your support, you have no idea how much it means.”

Referring to their children Lady Louise Windsor and James, Viscount Severn, the Earl continued: “The Queen’s passing has left an unimaginable void in all our lives.

“Sophie and I have taken huge pleasure in seeing our James and Louise enjoying the places and activities that their grandparents loved so much.

“Given that my mama let us spend so much time with her, I think she also rather enjoyed watching those passions blossom.

“Those times together, those happy memories, have now become massively precious to each and every one of us.

“May God bless Her Majesty and may her memory be long cherished even as the baton she has carried for these past 70 years now passes to the next generation and to my brother, Charles.”

Edward ended his statement: “Long live the King.”

The Wessexes were particularly close to the late Queen, with Sophie said to have been like a second daughter.

The Countess was among royals who rushed to Balmoral when her health deteriorated on September 8.

Edward and Sophie’s Bagshot Park residence is not far from Windsor Castle, where the late monarch was mainly based for the last two years.

It comes after Charles and Prince William greeted mourners in the queue for the lying in state earlier on Saturday.

The King and Queen Consort then held a Buckingham Palace lunch with governors-general from the Commonwealth realms, joined by the Prince and Princess of Wales.


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