AN Essex mourner was in tears as she met the King and the Prince of Wales.

Hundreds of people who had been waiting for more than ten hours to see the Queen lying in state were warmly greeted by Charles and William on Lambeth Palace Road on Saturday.

The royals arrived unexpectedly at around 12.30pm, sending shockwaves through a tired and bedraggled crowd.

As they emerged, people surged towards the metal barriers, keen to share a few words with the King and the heir to the throne.

Catherine Padbury, 28, broke down in tears, and the Prince of Wales paused to shake her hand and check on her welfare.

Ms Padbury, who was with her parents Laraine, 59, and David, 64, all from Colchester, said: “I just got completely overwhelmed that they came out to speak to us because they’re mourning themselves, and to come out and spend the time talking to us just means so much.

“I think he [William] saw that I was crying, paused and asked how the night was, checked that I was OK and asked who I was with.”

Fighting back tears, she added: “I hope that it’s some comfort to them as well when they see how much everyone loved Her Majesty.”