London's Heathrow airport, one of the busiest airfields in Europe, announced Thursday that it will stop flights for various periods next Monday to respect the silence that the United Kingdom will keep during the state funeral of Elizabeth II.
No plane will be allowed to take off or land at the airport, some 20 kilometers west of London, from fifteen minutes before to fifteen minutes after the end of the religious ceremony at Westminster Abbey, when two minutes of rigorous national silence are scheduled. .
In this way, the usual passages of aircraft over the center of the British capital in the direction of the airport, which can accommodate up to one landing per minute, will be avoided.
Between 1:45 p.m. and 2:20 p.m. local time, when the queen's coffin will leave the temple in a funeral procession, there will also be no flights, while the pace of takeoffs will slow down between 4:45 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. local time, to minimize noise at Windsor Castle, five miles away, where the queen will be buried.
"As a sign of respect, operations to and from the airport will be subject to appropriate changes to avoid noise disturbance at certain locations at specific times on Monday," said an airport spokesman.
In total, around 15% of Heathrow's air traffic on a typical day will be interrupted.