Royal staff are fuming over celebrities and MPs using priority lanes to beat queue for Queen tribute
Junior members of the royal household have been left ‘upset and disappointed’ at not being able to see the Queen lying in state.
Her staff say it is a ‘kick in stomach’ that MPs have been allowed to jump ahead of the queue – and take four guests with them – when many of those who served her loyally for years have not even been able to pay their respects.
‘They have the same Queen as everyone else. It’s pretty galling to see some people being given priority over others,’ a source told the Daily Mail.
There has also been much criticism of television presenters Phillip Schofield and Holly Willoughby using a priority media queue to view Her Majesty’s coffin
The 650 MPs were permitted to jump ahead of the 14-hour public queue, as well as members of the House of Lords. Jacob Rees-Mogg was seen accompanied by three of his young children last week using the ‘fast track’ system, as was former prime minister Theresa May and deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner.
Some parliamentary staff were also permitted to beat the crowds. However, it was pointed out that cleaners and security guards who work in Parliament had been told to queue as they are employed by contractors.
The House of Commons said priority lay with the public. In a statement, it said: ‘It is not possible to open up further access (for staffers) without the risk of impacting access for queueing members of the public.’
Royal sources told the Mail that the 1,200 plus royal staff who worked for the Queen, many of whom who have been on duty since she died, would have appreciated the chance to pay their respects.
Jacob Rees-Mogg was seen accompanied by three of his young children last week using the ‘fast track’ system
The Queen’s lying-in-state closed at 6.30am this morning to prepare for the funeral procession. It is particularly galling as staff working at both Buckingham Palace and Clarence House now face redundancy because of the change in reign.
Another source said: ‘There are a lot of people, particularly at Her Majesty’s estates, who have been dealing with household matters or marshalling the public wanting to come and lay tributes, that haven’t been able to pay their own respects.
‘It’s definitely left a bad taste in their mouths, especially when many of them have served her loyalty and are now facing redundancy through no fault of their own.’
However, Palace sources stressed there had been ‘several opportunities’ for staff members to pay their respects to the Queen.