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State Funeral of Sir Edmund Hillary

18 January 2008

State Funeral of Sir Edmund Hillary

Prime Minister Helen Clark today announced details of the arrangements for Sir Edmund Hillary’s State Funeral on Tuesday, 22 January, and for his lying in state in the Auckland Cathedral of Holy Trinity in Parnell from Monday 21 January until the funeral service at St Mary’s in Holy Trinity, Parnell.

Helen Clark said that government officials and the Anglican clergy conducting the service had been working closely with Lady Hillary and other family members to ensure that Sir Edmund’s funeral reflects both his family’s and our nation’s love and respect for him.

“The arrangements for the lying in state and for the screening of the funeral service will enable many New Zealanders to be part of, or follow closely, the farewell to Sir Edmund,” Helen Clark said.

“Sir Edmund will lie in state at the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity on Monday, with New Zealand Defence Force personnel maintaining a catafalque guard throughout the lying in state period.

A wreath-laying ceremony will commence after Sir Edmund’s casket arrives at the Cathedral. Wreaths will be laid by the Governor General Anand Satyanand, Prime Minister Helen Clark, the Leader of the Opposition and other political party leaders and representatives, and members of the Nepalese and Indian communities.

From 11.30am on Monday, the Cathedral will be open for members of the public to file past the casket and pay their respects to Sir Edmund. The Cathedral will remain open to the public overnight and until 8am on Tuesday morning.

On Tuesday, Sir Edmund’s casket will be moved from the Cathedral to the adjacent St Mary's at 8.45am. The State Funeral will begin at 11am.

“His Excellency the Governor-General will represent Her Majesty the Queen both officially and personally at the State Funeral. This exceptional arrangement reflects the personal and historical associations of the Queen with Sir Edmund from the beginning of her reign. In addition the Queen has offered the Hillary family a memorial service at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, on a date in April yet to be determined. Further information will be provided in a statement from the Buckingham Palace Press Office.

“The State Funeral service will be broadcast live by Television New Zealand and Radio New Zealand and relayed to large screens in the Auckland Domain and the Viaduct Basin to allow many people to be part of this special farewell to Sir Edmund.

“At the conclusion of the State Funeral, members of the New Zealand Alpine Club will form an honour guard, and students from Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate in Otara will perform a haka farewelling Sir Edmund on the forecourt of Holy Trinity Cathedral,” Helen Clark said.

Following the State Funeral the cortege will travel through the Auckland Domain past those who have gathered to follow the funeral service on the large screen there. The funeral cortege will travel from the Cathedral along Parnell Road, into Maunsell Road, to the Auckland Domain past the Cenotaph, then via The Crescent to Domain Drive, through the Domain and via Park Road, Khyber Pass and Broadway into Remuera Road.

Special shuttle buses will operate between the Britomart Transport Centre and the Domain on Tuesday, before and after the funeral.


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