14 poignant pics as streets of Sunderland fall silent in honour of Queen Elizabeth II

The streets of Sunderland fell silent today (September 19) as businesses closed and shoppers and workers remained at home as the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth II took place at Westminster Abbey.

High Street West, Market Square and Keel Square were deserted as an eerie silence pervaded through the city on what would normally be a busy Monday morning of commuters making their way to offices and retail outlets at the start of the working week.

The hustle and bustle of shoppers on High Street West and Fawcett Street was replaced with tranquil calm with not a car or pedestrian in sight with the only noise the occasional sound of a seagull passing overhead.

Supermarket car parks remained empty with many leading chains opting to close for the day while empty benches and cafes – which would normally be full of people sharing a coffee and a chat – captured the sombre mood of a city in mourning.

The Bridges was empty of both shoppers and retail workers but the tribute to Queen Elizabeth II displayed on the mall’s electronic advertising board provided a poignant reminder as to why the city had effectively closed for the day.

Here are 14 poignant photographs of the day Sunderland fell silent as the nation marked the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, the country’s longest serving monarch.

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