The royal reporter writes that her eldest son, Charles had sat with his mother for an hour, along with his wife Camilla, and then had gone out alone to forage mushrooms and clear his head.
He received the news that she had died as he was driving back to Balmoral Castle.
Others who were by the Queen’s bedside included Princess Anne and the Queen’s senior dresser and trusted confidante, Angela Kelly, along with the Rev Kenneth MacKenzie, a minister, who read to her from the Bible.
After her death, a footman brought a locked red box of paperwork found by her deathbed.
In it, were two sealed letters: one to her son and heir, Charles, and the other, addressed to Young.
The box also contained her final royal order: her choice of candidates for the prestigious Order of Merit for ‘exceptionally meritorious service’ across the Commonwealth.
“Even on her deathbed, there had been work to do. And she had done it,” Hardman writes of the Queen’s legendary work ethic.
This story originally appeared on Page Six and is republished here with permission.