19/03/2014 05:59 GMT

Tony Benn's Body Could Be Given Same Honour As Thatcher's


The body of Tony Benn may rest overnight in a Westminster chapel on the night before his funeral, if a request to Buckingham Palace is granted.

The honour was last granted to Margaret Thatcher last year.

Parliamentary authorities backed by the Commons Speaker, John Bercow, filed the request which would see the late Labour MP lie in the Chapel of St Mary Undercroft on 26 March.

Thatcher's coffin in the chapel last year

If granted it would be a private affair unlike an official "lying in state" where the public would be allowed to pay their respects.

Rev Rose Hudson-Wilkin, the chaplain to the Speaker, has said he would keep an overnight vigil if permission is granted.

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Photo gallery Tony Benn Life In Pictures See Gallery

The widely respected politician died last week at the age of 88.

Benn was admitted to Charing Cross Hospital in London at the beginning of February after feeling unwell, and returned home on March 4. His death comes just days after the loss of a left-wing hero of a later generation, RMT union boss Bob Crow.

Labour leader Ed Miliband paid tribute to an "iconic figure of our age".