LONDON — Boris Johnson paid a heartfelt tribute to “Elizabeth the Nice,” as a bunch of former prime ministers mourned the demise of Queen Elizabeth II.

Johnson — who left workplace this week — mentioned in a press release that it was the “saddest day” for the U.Okay. as a result of the queen’s “vibrant and shining gentle” had “lastly gone out.”

Queen Elizabeth II died in her vacation house in Balmoral, Scotland on Thursday on the age of 96 and after greater than 70 years on the throne. She is succeeded by her eldest son Charles, who now turns into King Charles III.

Johnson noticed the queen simply two days earlier than, when he resigned as prime minister and was changed by Liz Truss, who gave her personal tribute to the queen on the rain-soaked steps of Downing Avenue Thursday evening.

He mentioned that within the hearts of all Britons “there may be an ache on the passing of our queen, a deep and private sense of loss — way more intense, maybe, than we anticipated.”

“She appeared so timeless and so great that I’m afraid we had come to imagine, like youngsters, that she would simply go on and on,” Johnson mentioned.

And he added: “As is so pure with human beings, it is just after we face the fact of our loss that we really perceive what has gone. It is just actually now that we grasp how a lot she meant for us, how a lot she did for us, how a lot she cherished us.”

The queen, Johnson mentioned, “selflessly and calmly” embodied the “continuity and unity of our nation.”

“That is our nation’s saddest day as a result of she had a novel and easy energy to make us blissful,” he mentioned. “That’s the reason we cherished her. That’s the reason we grieve for Elizabeth the Nice, the longest serving and in some ways the best monarch in our historical past.”

Johnson’s predecessor Theresa Might mentioned the queen had devoted herself “unreservedly to a lifetime of service,” and was “revered and admired not solely by her personal individuals however far past our household of countries.”

The previous Conservative chief added: “As our longest reigning monarch, Her Majesty witnessed super change, transferring adroitly with the occasions however at all times offering stability and reassurance. She was our fixed all through this nice Elizabethan period.”

Fellow Tory David Cameron, in workplace between 2010 and 2016, mentioned: “Irrespective of how ready one may very well be for this present day, there aren’t any phrases that may adequately specific the sense of loss our nation will really feel.” The queen, he mentioned, had “been the fixed in all our lives over the previous 70 years. As our longest-serving monarch. her exceptional reign has lasted, for most individuals, our total lives — we all know nothing else.”

John Main, Conservative prime minister for a lot of the Nineteen Nineties, advised BBC Information: “It’s very onerous to take it in that that radiant smile, which lights up a room and lights up a rustic, is simply not going to be … there anymore.” There would, he predicted, be “many tears shed tonight and over the following few days for her majesty the queen.”

Tributes got here in too from the surviving Labour prime ministers who served the queen throughout her seven-decade reign.

Gordon Brown, the U.Okay.’s chief from 2007 to 2010, mentioned that the “United Kingdom, the Commonwealth, and all the world are joined collectively in mourning this night.” Elizabeth II, he mentioned, had “served this nation to the final.”

Tony Blair, who served for 13 years as British prime minister, mentioned: “We now have misplaced not simply our monarch however the matriarch of our nation, the determine who greater than every other introduced our nation collectively, saved us in contact with our higher nature, personified all the things which makes us proud to be British. “

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