Lady Thatcher to receive ceremonial funeral on 17 April

Former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher will receive a ceremonial funeral with military honors on 17 April, the British government said on Monday.

Downing Street said Queen Elizabeth II had authorised a ceremonial funeral — a step short of a state funeral — to be held at St. Paul's Cathedral.

The funeral will be attended by a "wide and diverse range of people" — including Thatcher's family and friends, Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg — and will be followed by a private cremation, the government added.

 Lady Thatcher to receive ceremonial funeral on 17 April

Former British PM Margaret Thatcher. AP

On the day before the funeral, Thatcher's coffin will be moved to a chapel at the Houses of Parliament. Following a short ceremony upon its arrival, the coffin will rest in the chapel overnight.

For the day of the funeral, streets will be cleared of traffic and Thatcher's coffin will travel by hearse to the Church of St Clement Danes, the chapel of the Royal Air Force.

The coffin then will be transferred to a gun carriage drawn by the King's Troop Royal Artillery and borne in procession to St Paul's Cathedral along a route lined by personnel from all branches of the armed forces.

A guard of honor will greet the coffin upon arrival at the cathedral, with military personnel lining the church steps.

While the funeral service will not be open to the public, Downing Street said it would be televised and that mourners can line the route of the funeral procession.

The government said that flags at Downing Street — which flew at half-staff on Monday — will do so again on Tuesday and on the day of the funeral.

With inputs from AP

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Updated Date: Apr 09, 2013 15:47:51 IST