ENGLAND'S World Cup-winners can expect the royal treatment when they fly home to a heroes' welcome.
The Webb Ellis Cup will have its own seat at the front of a British Airways B747 plane, which has been specially named 'Sweet Chariot' in honour of England's triumph over Australia.
Plans are feverishly being finalised back home to ensure the team get a reception deserving of their achievement.
The celebrations are likely to include a victory parade through central London and a champagne reception at Downing Street.
A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman said: "The Queen has sent a message to (coach) Clive Woodward congratulating the team on a great victory."
Tony Blair said: "This was a fantastic day for English rugby and for England. The team can be proud of their performance, their spirit and above all their character."
WILKO CLAIMS NEW HONOUR
THE DAY after Jonny Wilkinson lived out millions of schoolboys' dreams by winning the World Cup with a drop-goal in the last minute of extra-time, the England fly-half was confirmed as officially the best player on the planet.
England's ice-cool points machine was last week named as the International Players' Player of the Year and completed a magnificent double in Sydney yesterday when the game's world governing body held their own annual awards evening.
It was a second night of celebration for the England party, who were named as the Rugby Board's team of the year - with Clive Woodward recognised as the game's most outstanding coach.
CELEBRATION GAME AT HQ
ENGLAND will mark their stunning World Cup triumph with a pre-Christmas celebration game at Twickenham.
Although it will not be an official Test match, clearance has been given for an England XV to tackle the New Zealand Barbarians on December 20.
Tickets will sell out in record time, judging by initial enquiries on the back of England's unforgettable 20-17 triumph over Australia. "We've got all the clearances now from the Rugby Board," said Rugby Football Union chief executive Francis Baron in Sydney yesterday. "It's not a Test match; it will be the New Zealand Barbarians against an England XV. It's a celebration game."
FARR JONES IN POMS PRAISE
FORMER Australian World Cup winner Nick Farr-Jones heaped generous praise on Clive Woodward's England heroes yesterday.
But Farr-Jones expects the Aussies to come back stronger in France in four years' time.
He said: "England are the best team and they have been the best team for three years. We realise we have been beaten by the better team. "They weren't overly convincing. But there is no doubt that this is a great England team, and they thoroughly deserved their victory." DELIGHT: Kay