Britain's King Charles III (L) greets people in the queue to see Britain's late Queen Elizabeth II lying in state on the south bank in London on Saturday. Photo by Neil Hall/EPA-EFE

Britain’s King Charles III (L) greets people in the queue to see Britain’s late Queen Elizabeth II lying in state on the south bank in London on Saturday. Photo by Neil Hall/EPA-EFE

Sept. 17 (UPI) — Britain’s King Charles III on Saturday greeted people who endured cold overnight temperatures while waiting in line to view the the casket of his late mother, Queen Elizabeth II, as she lay in state in London.

Charles and his son, Prince William, met with members of the British public waiting in the miles-long line at the Albert Embankment on the south side of the Thames River near Lambeth Bridge, shaking hands accepting condolences from them.

Some visitors shouted “God save the King” as Charles moved down the line of mourners while William issued apologies for the wait as the public continued to file past the Queen’s coffin in Westminster Hall, The Guardian reported.

A video clip posted by the BBC on Twitter showed Charles and William shaking hands as spontaneous cheers issued from the those waiting to pay their respects.

British officials on Saturday estimated the wait time had risen to 16 hours, with end of the line forming in Southwark Park, about five miles east of Westminster Hall.

The new king and his siblings, including Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, held a brief vigil beside the coffin on Friday. His sons, Princes Andrew and Harry, are scheduled to do the same Saturday.

The Queen’s funeral is set for Monday at Windsor Castle outside of London.

King Charles has a busy day lined up on Saturday, including late morning meeting with the nation’s top military commanders at Buckingham Palace followed by a reception for the Governors General of the British Commonwealth.

Later in the afternoon he is to receive prime ministers from the Commonwealth nations, including Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and New Zealand Prime Minster Jacinda Ardern.

People file past the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II who will lie in state in Westminster Hall in London for four days. The coffin is draped with the Royal Standard on which lie the Instruments of State, the Imperial State Crown, the Orb and the Sceptre. A continuous vigil is being kept by The King’s Body Guards of the Honorable Corps of Gentleman at Arms, The Royal Company of Archers, The Yeomen of the Guard assisted by the Yeomen Warders of the Tower of London and by Officers of the Household on September 15, 2022. Photo by Hugo Philpott/UPI | License Photo

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