World leaders will be scattered across London for Queen’s funeral, as will Heathrow ‘to the max’

World leaders are expected to be dispersed at London airports as they gather for the Queen’s funeral as the capital’s main hub, Heathrow, cannot cope alone and will be ‘maxed out’ by VIPs, I can reveal.

Around 500 foreign leaders and dignitaries are expected to arrive by air over the weekend in what is expected to be one of the biggest events ever on British soil.

According to a memo disclosed to Policy earlier this week the Foreign Office advised them to arrive on “commercial” airlines rather than private jets where possible.

I understands the intent is for leaders to use common carriers and arrive on scheduled services so they don’t use up extra slots at airports.

This does not necessarily mean that they would travel alongside regular customers. Aviation expert John Strickland predicted that most people attending the Queen’s funeral would arrive on planes parking well away from the main passenger terminals.

“You can see the plane approaching but they will keep a clear distance when they arrive, from a safety perspective,” he said. I.

“Some will come to Heathrow, some will come to Stansted, I imagine, because there is plenty of space, a long way from the main terminal.”

A spokesperson for Stansted confirmed that the airport had received “multiple” offers for arrivals. “Heathrow is at maximum capacity, it has no extra capacity to take private jets,” the spokesperson said.

“The figures are not confirmed, but we have worked with several government agencies.

World leaders have been told to avoid arriving on private jets if possible, it is believed (Photo: Matthew Lloyd/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

“There are several offers at several sites, there are return trips and it is up to the different nations to decide. We have been active in this London system to manage transport at all airports.

The arrival of world leaders is expected to have a significant impact on air travel in the Southeast on Monday.

Heathrow announced it had cut hundreds of flights to ensure the skies above London went quiet as the Queen’s coffin was taken to the streets.

All flights will stop for 15 minutes before the nationwide two-minute silence on Monday, until 15 minutes after it ends.

They will also be pinned to the ground as the funeral procession and procession arrive at Windsor Castle, and diverted around the castle to minimize noise during the private family service on Monday evening.

West London Airport said 15% of the 1,200 flights due to take off or land there on Monday would be disrupted.

British Airways – the airline most affected – will cancel 100 short-haul flights due to the restrictions. Virgin Atlantic has announced that it will cancel four.

Beyond the aviation disruption, transport bosses are bracing for “unprecedented” travel demand in London over the next 48 hours.

More than 200 additional trains have been added to the national railway network to get people in and out of London, some operating through the night from places as far apart as Derby, Manchester and Bristol.

Railway network London train stations will remain open at night to provide shelter for people waiting for return trains. These include Charing Cross, Euston, King’s Cross, Liverpool Street, Victoria and Waterloo.

Several London Underground stations will be closed on Monday to avoid overcrowding (Photo: Oli Scarff/AFP via Getty)

Stationary trains will be used as overnight waiting areas at some stations as a “last resort”, with mourners being invited to board by station staff. Priority will be given to the elderly and vulnerable.

A full weekday timetable will operate, with around 250 additional services, including some night trains serving destinations within the M25. Additional services have been added to online trip planners.

Long distance services are expected to be busiest in the late afternoon and evening after the funeral. Passengers traveling short distances are encouraged to delay their return journey to ease pressure at stations.

Transport for London (TfL) said it had a “well-developed” plan for people to get around the capital, with additional bus and tube services already in operation.

Some pinch points such as Westminster, Waterloo and Trafalgar Square, as well as along the South Bank, are expected to be “unusually busy”.

Three central tube stations will be closed on the morning of the Queen’s funeral to avoid overcrowding. Passengers will not be able to start or end their journey at Westminster, St James’s Park and Hyde Park Corner stations for ‘most of the morning’ on Monday.

The number of passengers exploded in metro stations last week. Hyde Park Corner saw almost 18,000 people walk in and out of the station on Thursday, 44% more than the previous week and well above pre-Covid levels.

Westminster also saw the number of travelers increase by 33% this week.

The queue outside the Houses of Parliament for the Queen’s lie. Transport bosses are bracing for ‘unprecedented’ travel demand in London (Picture: Leon Neal/Getty)

On the roadsthe Highways Agency has suspended all planned maintenance work across the country for the duration of the bank holiday weekend and says it expects the roads to be “very busy”.

Drivers are advised not to enter central London, with many road closures in place, particularly around Westminster.

Many central London buses will be diverted due to road closures, and London Victoria Coach Station will be closed.

The weather is expected to continue to be hot and dry over the bank holiday weekend and TfL advises that the best option for travelers may be to get around on foot “given the significant demand for public transport”.

Andy Byford, London Transport Commissioner, said: “We are working around the clock to ensure that Londoners and visitors using the transport network can safely pay their respects to Her Majesty The Queen while she is in state at Westminster Hall and before the state funeral. In Monday.

“We have been working closely with our partners to help keep our city moving over the past week, and I once again urge all of our customers to check before they travel and before making their journey home, using the TfL website or the TfL Go app.

“It’s going to be very busy in London on Monday and there may be short term changes and queues to get into stations due to the large number of people travelling.

“We will offer a safe, reliable and frequent service to help ensure that everyone can return home safely after paying their respects.

“We encourage people to consider using the wide range of facilities open across London for refreshments after the state funeral. As well as allowing time to continue paying tribute, this will help ensure smoother journeys home for everyone.

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