Five ways the queue is not uniquely British

THE three-mile queue for the Queen’s lying-in-state is not as British as everyone says it is. Here’s why.

Britain didn’t invent queuing

The origins of queuing are lost to the mists of time, meaning nobody knows who invented it. Even though everyone associates standing in an orderly line with Britain, the Chinese probably came up with the idea centuries before we got round to it. But just like everything in the British Museum, we stole it and claimed it as our own.

It’s well-organised

The queue for the lying-in-state is a masterpiece of planning. It has toilets, airport-style security and an accessibility route, all of which is about as un-British as it gets. A proper British queue would be a bloated, costly affair run by Tory donors which demonises asylum seekers. Any of its failings would of course be blamed on the Labour Party.

It’s free

Britain is a greedy country currently in the grip of late-stage capitalism, meaning the existence of a free queue snaking its way through London is a bizarre anomaly. By rights it should charge people 20 quid every 100 metres, before being sold off to France who will make a massive profit out of it. Nothing could be more British than that.

Other countries queue

Queuing is a popular British stereotype, along with drinking tea and having crooked teeth, but why? Other countries wait in line every day and have the decency not to get all possessive about it. Meanwhile the presence of the Queen gives the whole ceremony a faintly Germanic air. Our ‘queue nationalism’ is a hypocritical farce, which is admittedly very British.

Everyone’s well-behaved

Anyone who’s ever waited to get into a nightclub or football ground will tell you the British are not the most civil of queuers. A fight is always on the brink of breaking out, someone’s usually chanting Sweet Caroline, and there’s always some bastard trying to cut in. None of this is happening at the lying-in-state, but mainly because there’s loads of armed guards about.

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Stephen Fry and Dame Emma Thompson named among national treasures to be buried with Queen

NATIONAL treasures including Stephen Fry and Emma Thompson have received the ultimate honour of being chosen to be buried with the Queen.

Following the reading of the Queen’s will, in which she left £15.2 billion in assets to her son tax-free, her choice of Britain’s national treasures have been informed of their imminent entombment.

Dame Emma said: “I can’t say how proud I will feel on Monday to wave at the public one final time as I descend the steps to the vault where I and my fellow treasures will spend eternity.

“To be chosen by the Queen, alongside Delia Smith, Sam Allardyce, Brian May and Kate Moss, among others, is the pinnacle of all our achievements.

“I’m told we will have 48 hours together in total darkness to celebrate the monarch we are privileged to lie beside before our air runs out. What a glorious demise.”

But broadcaster Louis Theroux, 52, said: “I honestly don’t think I deserve this and would very much like to turn it down. I don’t even qualify as a national treasure. Lots of people hate me.

“So thank you very much but no thanks, if I can say that. What’s that knocking? Oh Christ they’re at the door.”