Margaret Thatcher’s twins, Mark and Carol, met at the former prime minister’s home to make final arrangements today just hours after a stirring full military rehearsal for her funeral had taken place before dawn.
Major Andrew Chatburn, the man in charge of choreographing the parade, said the rehearsal “went very well” and claimed it was “vitally important” to stage a trial of Wednesday’s event.
More than 700 serving Armed Forces personnel gathered in central London before dawn as a Union flag-draped coffin was carried on a horse-drawn gun carriage from St Clement Danes, the church of the Royal Air Force, down the Strand to St Paul’s Cathedral.
Mark and Carol Thatcher spent time at her grand house in Belgravia today, and were later joined by Mark’s wife Sarah and their children Michael and Amanda.
Major Andrew Chatburn, ceremonial staff officer for the Household Division, who was also behind the royal wedding procession two years ago and last year’s Diamond Jubilee parade, said: “Timings are most important. We will learn something quite significant this morning about the timings, and to familiarize the troops of their duties.
“Bearing in mind these are sailors, soldiers and airmen who have come in to do this specific task from their routine duties, so it’s new to them.
“They need to see the ground as well so they can get a feel for how it’s going to go and they can perform their duties with confidence on the day.
“I thought it went very well.”