Grieving Sophie Wessex hugs well-wishers in Manchester during visit with Prince Edward

Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex travelled to Manchester today, where they lit a candle in memory of the Queen and viewed floral tributes in St Ann’s Square.

The Wessex royals also looked at the Book of the Condolence for the Queen, who passed away Thursday 8 September aged 96 at her Balmoral estate in Scotland.

Prince Edward and Countess Sophie were pictured greeting a large crowd who had gathered at Manchester's Central Library, where they arrived to see the Book of condolences.

The royal couple chatted with as many members of the public they could as they were presented with bouquets of flowers in commiseration of the Queen's death.

Sophie was also seen hugging and embracing well-wishers during the walkabout.

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Prince Edward and Sophie continued to wear black as the country remains in a national period of mourning for the Queen, with the Earl of Wessex wearing a suit while Sophie sported a long coat with pleat details.

The pair's Manchester visit comes after they, along with the Royal Family, took part in the procession as the Queen's coffin travelled from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall on Wednesday 14 September.

A procession from Buckingham Palace saw the Queen’s coffin moved to the ancient hall yesterday, followed by Edward and the rest of the late monarch’s children King Charles III, Princess Anne and Prince Andrew.

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The Countess was seen at Westminster Hall following the procession on Wednesday 14 September as Her Majesty’s coffin arrived at Westminster Hall, along with her and Edward’s children Lady Louise Windsor, 18, and James, Viscount Severn, 14.

Sophie appeared understandably emotional earlier this week as the Queen’s coffin was carried through the streets of Edinburgh on its way to London.

It’s now thought that her husband Edward, 58, may inherit his late father Prince Philip's former title of the Duke of Edinburgh in light of his mother’s death, therefore making Sophie a Duchess.

The titled was initially inherited by Charles, who has since been made King.


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