Inside a Special Operations Room in central London’s Lambeth borough are representatives from the Metropolitan Police, emergency companies, intelligence companies equivalent to GCHQ and MI5, and native authorities. They’ve gathered there for the queen.
“It’s an enormous room,” says Nick Aldworth, the UK’s former counterterrorism nationwide coordinator, who has spent 36 years in policing and the navy. Teams will work in varied “pods” and feed data to a senior police officer who can be in cost and make ultimate choices, Aldworth provides. Every hour there can be two fundamental conferences, the place the most recent updates are shared. “The overall commander will have tactical advisers sitting with them,” the previous counterterrorism director says.
The SOR is the principle hive of a sprawling safety and surveillance operation meant to guard mourners of Queen Elizabeth II, who died on September 8 on the age of 96, after greater than 70 years on the throne. The Met, the nation’s largest police pressure, says the policing operation is “enormous,” “extraordinary,” and the largest one it has ever conducted.
From the second the queen’s coffin left Balmoral, in Scotland, individuals have adopted its journey and paid their respects to the monarch. Five million individuals tracked the queen’s ultimate flight from Scotland to London. Thousands stuffed roads and sidewalks, dozens deep in locations, to look on the queen’s coffin because it handed. And for days, tens of hundreds of individuals have joined a miles-long queue in London, ready in line for greater than 24 hours, to see the queen mendacity in state in Westminster Hall. Millions have watched alongside on-line.
The mourning culminates on Monday, September 19, as tons of of world leaders be part of the royal household for the queen’s state funeral. More than one million individuals are anticipated to descend on London for all of the funeral occasions. More than 10,000 law enforcement officials are estimated to be concerned within the occasions, with tons of drafted from throughout the nation to London and the city of Windsor. Military employees will even be on standby.
“Probably every element of policing in London will be involved,” says Aldworth.
During the funeral, which runs for a lot of the day Monday, the queen’s coffin can be moved the quick distance from Westminster Hall to Westminster Abbey, the place the state funeral will happen, attended by 2,000 friends. This can be adopted by a procession, the place members of the royal household will stroll behind the coffin earlier than it’s pushed about 20 miles to the city of Windsor. An extra procession and ceremony will happen there earlier than the queen is laid to relaxation.
The Met’s SOR has a wall of TVs, broadcasting video footage. “It is a little bit like you might see in the movies,” Aldworth says. Videofeeds throughout the room embody CCTV of Buckingham Palace and the surrounding areas. (There are round 1 million CCTV cameras in London, making it one of the vital surveilled cities on the planet. Extra cellular CCTV cameras have been put in place for the queen’s funeral.) If the SOR can’t function for any cause, equivalent to an influence outage, there’s a backup focus on 10 miles away, Aldworth says.