GTR Queen Elizabeth II funeral poster

UK: The rail industry has activated its plans to handle the crowds expected at ceremonial events associated with the state funeral of the late Queen Elizabeth II, and is advising people to check journey details before travelling.

Network Rail said transport providers have well-developed plans in place. Extra staff and services are being deployed, and the infrastructure manager is working with the Rail Delivery Group and organisations including Transport for London to ensure that people are able to get around.

Chair of Network Rail Sir Peter Hendy said ’please make sure you check before you travel as we expect the road and transport networks to be busy’.

Government guidance is that there is no obligation on the transport industry to suspend business or events during the period of national mourning.

The Department for Transport said the public must be able to access transport information and services as usual, emphasising that ‘any changes to websites or social media pages should take into consideration accessibility requirements for visually impaired users’. This follows complaints when changes to website colour schemes following the death of Prince Philip in 2021 caused accessibility problems.

The Rail Delivery Group said holders of anytime, off peak and super off peak tickets purchased before the announcement of the Queen’s death on September 8 will be able to get fee-free refunds. Advance tickets will be refundable in line with the existing Book with Confidence scheme, meaning they can be changed or refunded for a voucher up to 6pm the evening before.

This aims to avoid passengers whose plans change or losing money, and will free up capacity on trains which RDG expects to be very busy during the mourning period due to large numbers wishing to travel to formal events, especially in London.


ScotRail said people heading to St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh should travel to Waverley station, where queues are expected and supporting arrangements will be in place. Owing to construction work being carried out on a building next to Haymarket station and the proximity of the tram lines, passengers are advised not to use Haymarket station if they are heading to the cathedral.

‘ScotRail and Network Rail are doing everything we can to support people who want to pay their respects while the Queen lies at rest in St Giles’ Cathedral’, said Alex Hynes, Managing Director of Scotland’s Railway. ‘We expect trains to be much busier than normal over the coming days, particularly to and from Edinburgh. Changes are being made to services to help people spread their journeys throughout the day, and passengers should still plan ahead and expect queues throughout the day.’


Andy Byford, London’s Transport Commissioner, said ‘thousands of people from all over the UK and beyond are expected to make their way to London to pay their respects. We are working with our partners to keep our city moving smoothly and to ensure that everyone who is planning to attend the memorial events can do so safely.’

Byford warned that ’while we’re planning to run a normal service, there may be short notice changes and diversions as a result of the large number of people travelling and necessary road closures’.

The Elizabeth Line will run a special service with 12 trains per hour on the central section between Paddington and Abbey Wood on Sunday September 18. The eastern and western sections will operate as normal.

London Underground will also run as normal, although some stations will be busier than usual and measures such as queuing, closures, non-stopping trains or changes to the way people enter or exit a station may be necessary.

The Rail Delivery Group said it will not be possible to view the funeral in London and then travel to Windsor for the interment, and people should plan to view one ceremony or the other.