Death and state funeral of Elizabeth II

Victims Unknown
Died Unknown
  • 8 September 2022 (2022-09-08)
  • (death)
  • 12 September 2022 (2022-09-12)
  • (thanksgiving service)
  • 19 September 2022 (2022-09-19)
  • (state funeral and burial)
Criminal penalty Unknown


On 8 September 2022, Elizabeth II, Queen of the United Kingdom and the other Commonwealth realms, the longest-living and longest-reigning British monarch, died at the age of 96 at Balmoral Castle in Scotland. Her death was announced at 18:30 BST (3:30am Australian Eastern Standard Time), followed by reactions from leaders around the world. She was succeeded by her eldest child, King Charles III.

The Queen's death set in motion Operation London Bridge, a collection of plans including arrangements for her funeral, and Operation Unicorn, which set protocols for the Queen's death occurring in Scotland. The United Kingdom is observing a national mourning period of 10 days. A state funeral service will be held at Westminster Abbey on 19 September 2022 at 11:00, followed by a committal service later that day at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle. The Queen will be interred in the King George VI Memorial Chapel at St George's. The occasion of her state funeral will be a national bank holiday in the UK.


The Queen had been in good health for most of her life. She faced some health issues after the death of her husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh; in October 2021, she had begun using a walking stick during public engagements. On 20 October, the Queen stayed overnight in King Edward VII's Hospital in central London, requiring scheduled visits to Northern Ireland and to the COP26 summit in Glasgow to be cancelled. She suffered from a sprained back in November and was unable to attend the 2021 National Service of Remembrance. In February 2022, during the COVID-19 pandemic in England, the Queen was one of several people at Windsor Castle to test positive for COVID-19. Her symptoms were described as mild and cold-like, and she later commented that the disease "does leave one very tired and exhausted". Given that the health impacts of COVID-19 and long COVID are known to be more severe among older people, the monarch's health became a cause of concern to many commentators.

The Queen was said to be feeling well enough to resume her official duties by 1 March 2022. She attended the service of thanksgiving for Prince Philip at Westminster Abbey on 29 March, but chose not to attend the annual Commonwealth Day service that month, or the Maundy Service in April. In May, she missed the State Opening of Parliament for the first time in 59 years (she did not attend in 1959 and 1963, as she was pregnant with Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, respectively). In the Queen's absence, Parliament was opened by the Charles, Prince of Wales and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge as Counsellors of State. Prince Charles, the then heir apparent, gained more official responsibilities towards the end of the Queen's life, and stood in for her at the State Opening of Parliament. In June, she did not attend the National Service of Thanksgiving for her Platinum Jubilee; official sources mentioned her "discomfort" after standing during the military parade celebrating her official birthday on the first day of celebrations. The Queen was largely confined to balcony appearances during the celebrations.

On 6 September, two days before her death, the Queen accepted the resignation of Boris Johnson and appointed Liz Truss to succeed him as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom; in a break with tradition, these meetings took place at Balmoral Castle (where the Queen was on holiday) rather than at Buckingham Palace. On 7 September, she was scheduled to attend an online meeting of the Privy Council of the United Kingdom to swear in new ministers in Truss's government, but it was announced that the meeting had been cancelled after she was advised to rest by doctors. The Queen's final public statement, issued that same day, was a message of condolences for the victims of the 2022 Saskatchewan stabbings.


8 September

Balmoral Castle (pictured in 2004), where the Queen died

At 06:50 BST, the Queen's helicopter left Windsor Castle for Scotland in order to transport Prince Charles from Dumfries House to Balmoral Castle. At 10:30, he arrived at the castle. Anne, Princess Royal was already staying at Balmoral and met him there. Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall also travelled to Balmoral, although it is not clear to the public if she accompanied her husband Charles or arrived on her own. Prime Minister Liz Truss was informed sometime in the morning by Cabinet Secretary Simon Case that the Queen was gravely ill.

At 12:00, the Prime Minister was updated and the Deputy Leader of the Opposition, Angela Rayner, was informed of the Queen's ill health by notes circulated during a speech in Parliament by the Leader of the Opposition, Sir Keir Starmer. Within the hour, at 12:30, Buckingham Palace publicly announced that the Queen was "under medical supervision" at Balmoral Castle after doctors expressed concern over her health. The statement read: "Following further evaluation this morning, the Queen's doctors are concerned for Her Majesty's health and have recommended she remain under medical supervision. The Queen remains comfortable and at Balmoral." The Speaker of the House of Commons, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, made a brief statement of good wishes in Parliament in response.

Prince William, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and his wife Sophie, Countess of Wessex and Forfar, and Prince Harry announced they were travelling to Balmoral, while Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and the Meghan, Duchess of Sussex stayed in Windsor and London respectively. At 12:40, the BBC, the national broadcaster of the United Kingdom, cut away from regular programming on BBC One to continuously cover the Queen's condition, with all BBC news journalists and broadcasters dressed in black later in the afternoon. Special reports about her condition were run on other main television channels in the UK, including ITV, Channel 4, and Channel 5. At 14:30, Prince William, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex and Forfar's flight left RAF Northolt for Aberdeen Airport.

By 16:30, the Queen had died. Simon Case informed the Prime Minister of the Queen's death at around this time. Thirty minutes later, Prince William, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex and Forfar arrived at Balmoral. Two hours later, at 18:30, the Queen's death had been publicly announced. The royal family announced her death on Twitter with the following statement:

The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon. The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.

BBC Queen Elizabeth II Coat of Arms.png
video icon Announcement of the death of the Queen on the BBC's television channels read by Huw Edwards

British television announcements of the Queen's death began at 18:31, and included the aforementioned statement being read verbatim by news presenter Huw Edwards during a live broadcast on the BBC News channel and BBC One. Three minutes later, Edwards repeated the statement across all BBC Television channels (bar BBC Three and Four, which were not broadcasting at the time, and had programmes suspended following the announcement of the death; and children's channels CBBC, which announced the news through their programme Newsround, and CBeebies, which saw no interruptions to its regular schedule), after which the national anthem was played. It is estimated that at least 16 million people in the United Kingdom may have watched the announcement of the death at the time. A 1992 portrait of the Queen by Richard Stone was chosen for the announcement.

In accordance with the protocol implemented after the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, the Union flag at Buckingham Palace was lowered to half-mast. It also flew at half-mast at 10 Downing Street and Balmoral Castle. Since the new monarch was already at Balmoral Castle when he became king, the Royal Standard of the United Kingdom was lowered and raised again at the castle. The Royal Banner of Scotland was lowered to half-mast at the Palace of Holyroodhouse, and the Welsh flag at Cardiff Castle was also lowered. Huge crowds gathered outside royal residences to mourn the Queen and rainbows were seen above Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle.

Shortly after 19:30, the Philadelphia Orchestra, having set aside its programme for its scheduled BBC Proms concert, played "God Save the King" in Royal Albert Hall.

At 20:00, Prince Harry, who had travelled alone and departed later than the other family members, arrived at Balmoral.

9 September

King Charles III and Camilla, Queen Consort travelled from Balmoral to Buckingham Palace, where they greeted the crowd of mourners outside the gates. The King then held an in-person audience with the Prime Minister before paying tribute to his mother in a publicly broadcast message. At the Palace of Westminster, MPs gathered to read out their messages of condolences and tributes.

In Charles's first address as King, he declared a period of mourning that is expected to last and be observed by the royal family and members of the royal household until seven days after the Queen's state funeral on 19 September. All flags at royal residences were ordered to be lowered to half-mast except for the Royal Standard which, in accordance with both long-standing protocol and as confirmed by the late Queen, will continue to fly at full mast wherever the current monarch is in residence. All royal residences will be closed to the public until after the state funeral has occurred. A 96-gun salute was fired in Hyde Park by the King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery, as well as at the Tower of London by the Honourable Artillery Company, at Edinburgh Castle by the Royal Artillery, at Cardiff Castle and Stonehenge by the 104th Regiment Royal Artillery, at Caernarfon Castle, at York Museum Gardens, and on board Royal Navy ships. An online book of condolence was set up by the royal website. Church bells tolled at Westminster Abbey, St Paul's Cathedral, and other churches across the UK. At Windsor Castle, the Sebastopol Bell, which is only rung to mark the deaths of senior royals, tolled 96 times, once a minute from 12:00 until 13:35, marking the 96 years of the Queen's life. The UK government published guidance on details surrounding the national mourning period, stating that businesses, public service, sports fixtures and public venues were not obliged to shut.

At St Paul's Cathedral, a ticketed service of prayer and mourning was held at 18:00, attended by senior politicians and 2,000 members of the public. The ceremony marked the first official rendition of "God Save the King" under Charles' reign. The Prime Minister gave a reading, the Bishop of London gave an address, and the Archbishop of Canterbury said the blessings. As the service was about to begin, Solemn Prelude "In Memoriam" from For the Fallen by Edward Elgar was played, and the hymns "All My Hope on God is Founded" and "O Thou Who Camest from Above" were also chosen for the event.

10 September

At 11:00, 21-gun salutes at the Tower of London, Cardiff Castle, Edinburgh Castle, Castle Cornet, Gibraltar, and naval bases and stations at sea marked the proclamation of accession of Charles III. After the proclamation ceremony, the King greeted crowds outside Buckingham Palace. Major roads in Edinburgh were closed in preparation for the Queen's coffin travelling from Balmoral to the Palace of Holyroodhouse, after which the coffin was moved to St Giles' Cathedral for the public to view and pay their respects. The Queen's three younger children, Princess Anne and her husband Sir Timothy Laurence, Prince Andrew, and Prince Edward and his wife Sophie, Countess of Wessex and Forfar, along with five of her grandchildren Peter Phillips, Zara Tindall, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie and Lady Louise Windsor, attended a service at Crathie Kirk and viewed floral tributes outside Balmoral. The King's sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, along with their wives, Catherine, Princess of Wales and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, viewed floral tributes outside Windsor Castle.

Senior MPs, including Prime Minister Liz Truss, swore an Oath of Allegiance to Charles III in a special session of Parliament. Buckingham Palace announced that Elizabeth II's state funeral would be held on 19 September. The UK Government subsequently announced the day would be a national bank holiday. The King and the Queen Consort held an audience with the Archbishop of Canterbury at Buckingham Palace. The King then met with the Prime Minister for a second time and held audiences with members of her cabinet, and with leaders of the opposition parties.

Gaston Browne, the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda, confirmed Charles III's role as the nation's head of state, but added that a referendum on whether to become a republic could take place within three years.

11 September

On 11 September at 10:06, the Queen's coffin, draped with the Scottish version of the Royal Standard of the United Kingdom, and with a wreath on top consisting of dahlias, sweet peas, phlox, white heather and pine fir from the castle gardens, left Balmoral Castle with a cortege to the Throne Room in the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, where it stayed until the afternoon of 12 September. The cortege, of which Princess Anne and her husband Sir Timothy Laurence were a part, lasted just over six hours as the coffin made its way on a 175-mile journey through Aberdeenshire, Aberdeen, Angus, Dundee, Perth and Fife before reaching Holyrood Palace at 16:23, where Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex and Forfar were awaiting its arrival. It went past buildings and places that had a personal connection to the Queen, including Crathie Kirk, the King George VI Bridge, and the Queensferry Crossing. People lined the route of the cortege to pay their respects, and some solemnly clapped at the street as the coffin made its journey. At one point along the route, farmers in Aberdeenshire formed a guard of honour of tractors.

The King met the Commonwealth Secretary General at Buckingham Palace, after which he and the Queen Consort hosted Realm High Commissioners and their spouses in the Bow Room at Buckingham Palace. MPs continued to pay tribute to the Queen in Parliament, and tributes in the Senedd were led by the Welsh first minister Mark Drakeford.

BBC One began a return to normal programming, having dedicated its schedules to constant rolling news coverage since the death of the Queen. ITV, Channel 4 and Sky resumed running advertisements, which had not been shown since the Queen's death was announced.

12 September

The King and the Queen Consort travelled to Westminster Hall to receive condolences from the House of Commons and the House of Lords. The King delivered a speech to both houses with 900 Parliamentarians in attendance. In his speech, the King stated: "Parliament is the living and breathing instrument of our democracy. That your traditions are ancient we see in the construction of this great hall and the reminders of medieval predecessors of the office to which I have been called." He and the Queen Consort then travelled to Edinburgh by air. At the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the King and the Queen Consort greeted members of the public and viewed floral tributes. The King then inspected the Guard of Honour from the Royal Regiment of Scotland, and the Ceremony of the Keys followed.

A procession carried the Queen's coffin to St Giles' Cathedral. It was draped with the Royal Standard for use in Scotland with a wreath on top consisting of white spray roses, white freesias, white button chrysanthemums, dried white heather (from Balmoral), spray eryngium (thistle), foliage, rosemary, hebe, and pittosporum. The King, Princess Anne and Sir Timothy Laurence, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward, the Bearer Party from the Royal Regiment of Scotland, and the Royal Company of Archers took part in the procession on foot along the Royal Mile. The Queen Consort and the Countess of Wessex and Forfar followed closely in their car. Guns were fired every minute from Edinburgh Castle during the procession and stopped as the hearse came to a full stop outside the cathedral.

The King and the Queen Consort, Princess Anne and Sir Timothy Laurence, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex and Forfar, friends, politicians, and representatives from the Queen's Scottish charities and organisations attended a service of thanksgiving at St Giles' Cathedral, led by the Rev Calum MacLeod, to celebrate the Queen's life and highlight her association with Scotland. Prior to the beginning of the service, Alexander Douglas-Hamilton, 16th Duke of Hamilton placed the Crown of Scotland upon the coffin. The opening hymn of the service was "All People that on Earth do Dwell", the metrical version of Psalm 100. Scottish singer Karen Matheson sang Psalm 118 in Gaelic, while the first Lesson was taken from Ecclesiastes 3. The choir then sang Psalm 116 before the second reading from Romans 8. The second hymn was "The Lord's My Shepherd", the metrical version of Psalm 23 which was followed by the gospel reading from John 14. The Moderator of the Church of Scotland, the Rev Dr Iain Greenshields, gave the homily and thereafter the choir sang William Byrd's anthem "Justorum Animae". After several prayers were said, the closing hymn, "Glory to God! Our living songs we raise", was sung followed by the national anthem and the benediction.

Motion of Condolence in the Scottish Parliament

At Holyroodhouse, the King had an audience with the First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, and the Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament, Alison Johnstone. The King and the Queen Consort visited the Scottish Parliament to receive a motion of condolence. Together with the MSPs, they observed a two-minute silence. The Queen's coffin lay at rest at the cathedral for 24 hours, guarded constantly by the Royal Company of Archers, allowing the people of Scotland to pay their respects. Around 33,000 people filed past the coffin. In the evening, the King, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, and Prince Edward held a vigil at the cathedral, a custom known as the Vigil of the Princes; Princess Anne was the first woman to participate.

Members of the Legislative Assembly of Northern Ireland paid tribute to the Queen.

13 September

The King and the Queen Consort travelled to Belfast, landed at the George Best Belfast City Airport and visited Royal Hillsborough, where they met with members of the public in the main street. They then travelled to Hillsborough Castle. They viewed an exhibition that highlights the Queen's association with Northern Ireland. They also met with members of the public and view floral tributes outside Hillsborough Castle. The King then met the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Chris Heaton-Harris, and party leaders. The Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly, Alex Maskey, delivered a message of condolence. After a short reception at Hillsborough and inspecting troops at the castle, the King and the Queen Consort met with major faith leaders in Northern Ireland and travelled to St Anne's Cathedral before leaving Belfast for London.

At the service of reflection at St Anne's Cathedral, the Archbishop of Armagh John McDowell, the head of the Church of Ireland, paid tribute to the Queen for her efforts in bringing peace to Ireland. A Sinn Féin delegation was present at the cathedral, though the republican party announced that they would not be attending any events marking Charles III's accession. Also attending the service were the Prime Minister, Liz Truss, the President of Ireland, Michael D. Higgins, and the Taoiseach, Micheál Martin. At the end of the service, the King and the Queen consort met members of the public at Writers' Square.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, the Presiding Officer Alison Johnstone and Scottish Secretary Alistair Jack attended a final prayer service at St Giles' Cathedral, before the Queen's coffin was taken by hearse from the cathedral to Edinburgh Airport as thousands lined the streets. It was taken aboard a Royal Air Force C-17 Globemaster to RAF Northolt, accompanied by Princess Anne and her husband, Sir Timothy Laurence. The Royal Air Force Bearer Party carried the coffin onto the aircraft and a Guard of Honour was formed by the Royal Regiment of Scotland.

Once in London, the Queen's Colour Squadron (63 Squadron RAF Regiment) assumed the role of the Bearer Party and form the Guard of Honour. The coffin was placed in the State Hearse, which had been designed in consultation with the Queen, which then travelled to Buckingham Palace via the A40, Westbourne Terrace, Lancaster Gate, Bayswater Road, Marble Arch, Park Lane, Hyde Park Corner, and Constitution Hill. People lined the streets as the cortege made its way to the palace. The coffin was then placed in the Bow Room at Buckingham Palace in the presence of her children and grandchildren along with their spouses, including the King and the Queen consort, the Prince and Princess of Wales, and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, as well as her nephew and niece (children of Princess Margaret, Countess of Snowdon).

14 September

The Queen's cortege on The Mall towards Westminster Hall

On 14 September, the Queen's coffin, adorned with the Imperial State Crown and a wreath of white roses, spray white roses, white dahlias, and a selection of foliage (including pine from Balmoral, pittosporum, lavender and rosemary from Windsor), and borne on a horse-drawn gun carriage of the King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery (previously used for carrying her parents' coffins), was taken from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall in a military procession. The King, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York, the Earl of Wessex and Forfar, the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Sussex, Peter Phillips, the Earl of Snowdon, the Duke of Gloucester, and Sir Timothy Laurence followed the coffin on foot. As non-working royals, the Duke of York and the Duke of Sussex did not wear military uniforms for the occasion. The Queen consort and the Princess of Wales followed the procession in one car, while the Countess of Wessex and Forfar and the Duchess of Sussex followed in another. They were later joined by the Duke of Kent and Prince Michael of Kent at the hall. The military bands played pieces by Ludwig van Beethoven, Felix Mendelssohn, and Frederic Chopin, as drumbeats accompanied the marching, which was choreographed to 75 steps per minute. Big Ben tolled each minute as the procession continued and minute guns were fired from Hyde Park by the King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery. The procession took the coffin through the Queen's Gardens, The Mall, Horse Guards Parade and Horse Guards Arch, Whitehall, Parliament Street, Parliament Square and New Palace Yard.

Members of the three armed forces formed a guard of honour to receive the coffin at Parliament Square. After the coffin arrived, soldiers from the Queen's Company 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards placed the coffin on a catafalque. The Archbishop of Canterbury and the Dean of Westminster conducted a service in the presence of the King and members of the royal family. "O Lord, thou hast searched me out and known me" was sung during the short service. The Queen's lying in state began at 5pm in Westminster Hall and will last until the morning of her funeral.

A minute's silence was observed in Dáil Éireann.

15 September

On 15 September, the Prince and Princess of Wales travelled to Norfolk to view tributes outside Sandringham House and meet members of the public. The Earl and Countess of Wessex and Forfar did the same at St Ann's Square, Manchester Central Library, and Manchester Cathedral, while the Princess Royal and Sir Timothy Laurence viewed tributes at the Glasgow City Chambers and met with well-wishers at George Square.

The King and the Queen consort spent the day in Highgrove House and Ray Mill House, respectively.

16 September

On 16 September, the King and the Queen consort visited Wales, concluding their tour of the UK's four nations. They arrived to the sound of a royal gun salute from Cardiff Castle. Crowds were inside castle grounds, and a silent protest by 100 people against the monarchy was held by trade unions, Labour for an Independent Wales and equality campaigners, led by Bethan Sayed.

The royal couple began by attending a service of prayer and reflection for the Queen at Llandaff Cathedral, led by the Acting Dean of Llandaff, Michael Komor. The Bishop of Llandaff, June Osborne, said the prayers and the Archbishop of Wales, Andrew John, delivered an address in both English and Welsh. The ceremony also included a Welsh prayer, performed by the choir and harpists Alis Huws and Catrin Finch. The song was composed by Paul Mealor with words by Grahame Davies. After the service, the King and the Queen consort met with members of the public on nearby Llandaff Green.

The King and the Queen consort then visited the Senedd to receive a motion of condolence, and the King addressed the parliament in English and Welsh. At Cardiff Castle, the King had audiences with the First Minister of Wales, Mark Drakeford, and the Llywydd, Elin Jones. At the castle, they also held audiences with individuals associated with their royal patronages, before meeting with members of the public in the castle grounds. Upon returning to London, the King met leaders of different faith communities at Buckingham Palace.

The Prince and Princess of Wales visited the Army Training Centre Pirbright to meet with troops deployed from Canada, Australia, and New Zealand that will take part in the state funeral. The Earl and Countess of Wessex and Forfar met with members of the public and viewed tributes at Windsor Castle.

At Westminster Hall, during the evening, the King and his siblings held a vigil around the Queen's coffin again, as they did in Edinburgh earlier in the week. They wore military uniform as they mounted guard at the four corners of the catafalque for roughly 10 minutes. Prince Andrew had not worn a military uniform at any events marking the Queen's death prior to this, when an exception allowing him to do so was made.

17 September

At Buckingham Palace, the King received the Defence Chiefs of Staff, including the First Sea Lord, Chief of the Air Staff, Chief of the General Staff, Chief of the Defence Staff, Vice Chief of Defence Staff, and Commander of United Kingdom Strategic Command. He then met with emergency services workers at the Metropolitan Police's Special Operations Room in Lambeth, who were organising aspects of the Queen's state funeral. The King and the Prince of Wales then visited the Queue to speak to its participants. The Earl and Countess of Wessex and Forfar met with crowds outside Buckingham Palace. The governors-general of the Commonwealth realms attended a reception and lunch at Buckingham Palace, hosted by the King, the Queen Consort, the Prince and Princess of Wales, the Earl and Countess of Wessex and Forfar, the Princess Royal and Sir Timothy Laurence, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, the Duke of Kent, and Princess Alexandra. The King also received in audience the prime ministers of Canada, Australia, the Bahamas, Jamaica, and New Zealand.

The Queen's eight grandchildren – the Prince of Wales, the Duke of Sussex, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie, Lady Louise Windsor, Viscount Severn, Peter Phillips, and Zara Tindall – mounted guard at the catafalque in Westminster Hall for a 15-minute vigil. At the King's request both the Prince of Wales and the Duke of Sussex were in military uniform.

18 September

At 20:00, a minute's silence will be observed across the UK.

Lying in state

A map of "The Queue", which starts at Southwark Park (right) and follows along the edge of the River Thames before reaching Westminster Hall (left)

The Queen is currently lying in state in Westminster Hall and the public are able to view the coffin, which is displayed on a catafalque. Throughout this time, the coffin will be guarded constantly by members of both the Sovereign's Bodyguard and the Household Division and the public will be able to file past to pay their respects. In addition to the Imperial State Crown, the Sovereign's Orb and the Sovereign's Sceptre with Cross were placed on the coffin and the Wanamaker Cross of Westminster has been placed at its head. The regimental flag of The Queen's Company of The Grenadier Guards was placed at the foot of the coffin. Both the BBC and ITV are offering a livestream of the Queen lying in state for those who are unable to attend at Westminster Hall.

The Queue

Mourners at the back of "The Queue" shortly after it officially reopened in the afternoon of 16 September at Southwark Park, approximately 5 miles and 24 hours wait away

A very lengthy queue formed to view the lying in state, with long waits. The Queue, as it became known, is a social phenomenon in itself. Many commentators noted the traditional cultural belief that the British are good at queueing. Queueing began 48 hours before the Hall was opened to the public. The queue reached nearly 5 miles (8 km) in length, with waiting times exceeding 25 hours as of the morning of 17 September. The Government set up a live tracker showing where the end of the queue was. They also set up over 500 public toilets, water stands, and first aid stations. Venues along the way have also opened their facilities. Once the queue had reached maximum capacity and was temporarily closed, a secondary, unofficial, queue to enter the primary queue had formed.

On the first day of the lying in state, 14 September, it had been alleged that a 19-year-old man had sexually assaulted two women whilst in the queue by exposing himself and pushing into people in the queue from behind, before jumping into the River Thames.

On 16 September, a man was arrested after he "darted out of the line passing the catafalque and managed to climb the steps and touch the coffin, before [he was] swiftly detained".

State funeral


Plans for the Queen's death have existed in some form since the 1960s. The Queen was consulted about all the details included in her funeral plan. The Earl Marshal, the Duke of Norfolk, is in charge of organising the event.

The state funeral is set to be held at Westminster Abbey at 11:00 on 19 September 2022. This will mark the first time that a monarch's funeral service is held at Westminster Abbey since George II in 1760, and the first state funeral in Britain since that of Winston Churchill in 1965. In terms of the complexity of logistical planning, diplomatic protocol, and security, Elizabeth II's funeral will be the largest such event in the UK since the Churchill state funeral, with up to 500 foreign dignitaries, including heads of state, expected to attend. The timing of the funeral will allow guests who plan to address the general debate of the UN General Assembly the following day, sufficient time to fly across the Atlantic to attend. Invitations were issued to every country with which Britain maintains diplomatic relations, with the exception of Russia, Belarus, Myanmar, Syria, Venezuela, and Afghanistan. The Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office has handled the invitations, communications, and security arrangements via the newly setup headquarters "The Hangar", which includes 300 officials brought in from other departments.

Hotel prices have also increased in the days before the funeral in London. Extra train services will be made available across the country to allow people to travel to and from London and pay their respects for the lying in state and funeral service.


On the day of the funeral, the coffin will be moved from Westminster Hall at 10:44 to Westminster Abbey on the State Gun Carriage of the Royal Navy and in keeping with tradition of every state funeral of a monarch since Edward VII, the carriage will be drawn by 142 Royal Navy sailors, as the King and other members of the royal family as well as members of the King's household walk behind. Non-working royals, including the Duke of York and the Duke of Sussex, will not wear military uniforms for the state funeral and the committal service. The coffin will arrive at Westminster Abbey at 10:52. The Dean of Westminster David Hoyle is expected to conduct the service, and the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and the Secretary General of the Commonwealth will read lessons at the ceremony. The prayers are to be said by the Archbishop of York, the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster, the Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland and the Free Churches Moderator. The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby will deliver the sermon and the Dean of Westminster will give the blessing. At 11:55, "Last Post" will be sounded and the attendees will observe a two-minute silence at the abbey. During the national two-minute silence, no flights will be landing at or departing from Heathrow. The singing of the National Anthem will mark the end of the ceremony at 12:00. The coffin will then be taken in a procession from Westminster Abbey to Wellington Arch on the State Gun Carriage, led by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and followed by the King and members of the royal family. Big Ben will toll each minute as the procession continues and minute guns will be fired from Hyde Park by the King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery. At Wellington Arch, the coffin will be transferred with a royal salute to the State Hearse for the trip to Windsor.

A final procession is expected to occur at Albert Road and via the Long Walk to St George's Chapel. The royal family will join the procession in the Quadrangle at Windsor Castle, during which Sebastopol Bell and the Curfew Tower Bell will toll and the King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery, will fire minute guns from the East Lawn of Windsor Castle. At the end of procession the coffin will be taken to St George's Chapel via the West Steps with the guard of honour formed by the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards.

Holidays and observances

The day of the funeral (19 September) will be a bank holiday in the UK, with all schools, colleges and universities in the UK closing for the day. The London Stock Exchange will be closed on the day of the funeral. The London Metal Exchange will close its offices for the day of the funeral, but remain open for trading. Many businesses across the UK, including most chain supermarkets and retailers, will be closed on the day of the funeral. The National Health Service stated that local trusts would decide whether to cancel hospital appointments, with several trusts choosing to cancel or reschedule all non-urgent appointments. Controversially, several food banks announced that they would close on the day of the funeral, with some changing their plans to remain open after facing public backlash.

In Canada, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that the date of Elizabeth II's funeral will be marked by a federal holiday. However, the federal holiday only applied to federal government employees, and does not apply to federally regulated industries, such as banks and airlines, who can choose whether to give their employees a day off. The federal holiday decision also did not affect whether most Canadian workers would get a day off work, since about 85–90% of Canadian workers are employed in sectors regulated by the provinces and territories. The provinces split on the decision, creating some confusion. Canadian business interests, such as the Retail Council of Canada and Canadian Federation of Independent Business, successfully lobbied most provinces not to declare the funeral a statutory paid holiday, citing the business impact of such a step. Prince Edward Island was the sole province to declare the date of Elizabeth II's funeral a full public holiday, directing businesses in the province to either close or pay their employees time and a half. In the other Atlantic provinces (Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick) and in British Columbia, the day of the funeral was declared a one-off provincial holiday or temporary statutory holiday, but with only schools and government offices are to be closed, and observance optional for private-sector businesses. In British Columbia, most Crown corporations were to be closed for the funeral. The holiday for schools, but not for most private-sector businesses, caused disruption for many parents. Most other provinces—including Ontario and Quebec—did not declare a holiday, and instead declared a day of mourning or commemoration.

In Australia, a "one-off public holiday" will be observed as a national day of mourning on 22 September, although the Australian Industry Group and Australian Medical Association criticised the short notice for the extra holiday and its effect on business and appointments. A one-off public holiday in New Zealand will be observed on Monday, 26 September (designated "Queen Elizabeth II Memorial Day"), the date the New Zealand State Memorial Service will be held in the Wellington Cathedral of St Paul.

In Solomon Islands, the Prime Minister declared 12 September as a national public holiday throughout the country to mourn the loss of the Queen of Solomon Islands. Papua New Guinea also declared a public holiday to honour the Queen.

Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, and Belize will observe the day of the Queen's funeral as a national holiday.

Niue declared a public holiday on 19 September, which will be observed as "a day of mourning, commemoration, and condolence", and to pay tribute to the Queen and her reign over Niue.


BBC One will be covering the funeral from 08:00 to 17:00, with BSL interpretation on BBC Two. BBC Radio will be broadcasting their own programme, with coverage airing across Radio 2, 3, 4, 5 Live and the World Service. The Local Radio network will also air the programme. BBC Radio 1, 1Xtra, the Asian Network & 6 Music will not be simulcasting but will "reflect the events of the day in their news coverage". ITV announced that they will be covering the funeral from 23:45 on Sunday to 06:00 on Tuesday on all of their channels (ITV2, 3, 4, ITVBe and CITV), marking the first joint simulcast across all of its channels. Sky is set to follow suit with their channels. Channel 4 and Channel 5 will not be showing the funeral.

Shops, licensed establishments, parish and public halls will remain open in Jersey to allow people watch the Queen's funeral. Big screens will be set up at cathedrals and public areas to broadcast the service. Major networks from around the world are expected to broadcast the funeral in their respective countries, with online streaming options.

On 13 September, a survey published by YouGov showed that 49% of respondents thought the current media coverage of the Queen's funeral was too much, while 41% thought it was about the right amount.


500 heads of state and foreign dignitaries are expected to be present at the funeral ceremony at Westminster Abbey, which can accommodate up to 2,200 people.

Due to the limited number of seats, the heads of state will be accompanied only by their spouses and they have been asked to keep their delegations as small as possible. Ahead of the state funeral, the UK government issued guidelines for the dignitaries that have been invited to the event, urging them to use commercial flights as Heathrow Airport could not accommodate the huge number of private flights. Those seeking to fly privately were instructed to land at other airports. 180 flights were affected and around 100 were cancelled at Heathrow Airport. Additionally, the guidance urged heads of states and guests not to use private cars for travel on the day of the funeral, instead indicating that guests would be transported to a separate site in London where the government will "provide coach transport from a central assembly point" to Westminster Abbey. When the guidance was reported on, a spokesperson for Prime Minister Liz Truss said that "arrangements for different leaders will vary" and that the documents were only for guidance. US President Biden, for example, will not take a shared bus; he will instead go to Westminster Abbey for the funeral in the presidential state car. The President of Israel will also be taken to the event through other means. Many dignitaries will be present for a reception by the King at Buckingham Palace on the eve of the funeral, and all international guests will be invited to attend a reception hosted by Foreign Secretary James Cleverly after the funeral service.


Around 10,000 police officers are expected to be on duty every day in London during the mourning period, in what has been described as the "biggest security operation it has ever undertaken" by the Metropolitan Police. MI5 and GCHQ have worked in collaboration with counter terrorism police and the Metropolitan Police to provide security for the funeral. Gurkhas and Paratroopers, Royal Navy Police and Royal Military Police, and RAF personnel formed a group of 1,500 military personnel, and Westminster has been inspected by a military Wildcat helicopter. North Yorkshire Police and Humberside Police personnel will be deployed to London to provide security. Mounted police officers will provide part of the security in Windsor with the help of drones that record activities on the ground. The Thames Valley Police announced that they would introduce new water patrols for observing busy waterways in the lead-up to the funeral. Officers and their dogs will also be patrolling different areas in Windsor, looking for suspicious items in phone boxes, drains, and bins.


The funeral costs are being paid for by the UK government. The total cost has not been published, but it is expected to exceed the £5.4m paid for the funeral of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother.

Committal service

Several roads and streets have been closed in Windsor ahead of the committal service. Westminster City Council deployed its "Clean Streets" team to clean up different areas within central London.

The committal service will begin at 16:00 in the presence of the royal family, members of the royal household, and governors general and Commonwealth realms prime ministers. The Dean of Windsor will conduct the service, and the Rector of Sandringham, the Minister of Crathie Kirk and the Chaplain of Windsor Great Park will deliver the prayers. Towards the end of the service, the Imperial State Crown, and the Sovereign's Orb and Sceptre will be removed from the coffin and placed on the altar to be returned to the Tower of London. At the conclusion of the final hymn, the King will place the Queen's Company Camp Colour of the Grenadier Guards on his mother's coffin, and the Lord Chamberlain will add his broken wand of office on top. The coffin will then be lowered to the Royal Vault while the Dean of Windsor says a Psalm and the Commendation. The service will continue with the proclamation the late Queen's styles and titles by the Garter King at Arms, followed by a lament by the Sovereign's Piper and the blessing by the Archbishop of Canterbury. The singing of the National Anthem will mark the end of the ceremony.


The Queen's body and the body of Prince Philip, who died in 2021, will then be interred in a private family service in the later evening in the King George VI Memorial Chapel, at St George's alongside the bodies of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother and the ashes of Princess Margaret.


Upon the Queen's death, her eldest son Charles, Prince of Wales, immediately acceded to the throne as King of the United Kingdom as Charles III.

There was some speculation regarding the regnal name that would be adopted by the former Prince of Wales upon succeeding his mother. During her formal televised address outside 10 Downing Street, Prime Minister Liz Truss made the first mention of the King's regnal name during a tribute to the Queen. Clarence House officially confirmed the new King would be known as Charles III shortly after the Prime Minister's address. Buckingham Palace released the King's first official statement as monarch at 19:04:

The death of my beloved Mother, Her Majesty The Queen, is a moment of the greatest sadness for me and all members of my family.

We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished Sovereign and a much-loved Mother. I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the Realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.

During this period of mourning and change, my family and I will be comforted and sustained by our knowledge of the respect and deep affection in which The Queen was so widely held.

Most of Charles III's pre-accession Scottish titles, as well as the title Duke of Cornwall, were passed to his eldest son and the new heir apparent to the throne, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. On 9 September, William was named Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester, succeeding his now-reigning father.

The Accession Council assembled on 10 September at St James's Palace to formally proclaim the accession of Charles III. Although about seven hundred people were eligible to attend the ceremony, because the event was planned on such short notice, the number in attendance was two hundred. In addition to other formalities, the Council de jure confirmed "Charles III" as the King's regnal name.

No dates have been announced yet for the coronation of Charles III and Camilla, or for the investiture of Prince William as the new Prince of Wales.


Royal family

Notice of the Queen's death posted at Holyrood Palace, Edinburgh

King Charles III paid tribute to his mother in a broadcast to the Commonwealth the following evening:

To my darling Mama, as you begin your last great journey to join my dear late Papa, I want simply to say this: thank you. Thank you for your love and devotion to our family and to the family of nations you have served so diligently all these years. May flights of Angels sing thee to thy rest.

The King, along with Princess Anne and Prince Edward, paid tribute to their mother in the BBC One special programme A Tribute to Her Majesty The Queen. On 10 September, Prince William issued a statement, paying tribute to his grandmother whom he described as an "extraordinary Queen". On 12 September, Prince Harry issued a statement, describing his grandmother as a "guiding compass" in duty and service. On 13 September, Princess Anne issued a statement, thanking the public for their messages and describing the opportunity to accompany her mother's coffin from Balmoral to London as "an honour and a privilege". On 16 September, Prince Edward issued a statement, thanking the public for their support as the Queen's death left "an unimaginable void in all our lives". On 17 September, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie shared a statement, describing their grandmother as a "remarkable leader".

Other responses

Hundreds of people had gathered outside the gates of Buckingham Palace in the rain in London.

Various political leaders and heads of state and government, as well as members of royalty, sent messages of condolence. Hundreds of people had gathered outside the gates of Buckingham Palace in London at the time of the announcement. Many others used social media to post condolences and tributes both to the Queen and to the British royal family. Floral tributes were later left outside Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Sandringham House, Balmoral Castle, the Palace of Holyroodhouse, Hillsborough Castle and Highgrove House. Several black cab drivers lined The Mall with their lights on to pay tribute to the Queen. Numerous books of condolences were set up at libraries and council offices across the UK. In addition to flowers, mourners left Paddington Bear replicas, Corgi soft toys, balloons and marmalade sandwiches at various sites, prompting the Royal Parks to issue a statement, asking mourners to leave only unwrapped flowers, "organic or compostable material", in the interests of sustainability.

Flags at Parliament Hill in Ottawa and the Capitol Building and the White House in Washington, D.C. were flown at half-mast in her honour. The Empire State Building in New York City illuminated in purple and silver, the Eiffel Tower in Paris went dark at midnight, and the Sydney Opera House had an image of the Queen projected onto it. Billboards at Piccadilly Circus, the BT Tower and Times Square showed tributes to the Queen, as well as advertising screens on the side of bus stops across London. In Hong Kong, mourners left floral tributes outside the British consulate. Many other landmarks across the world paid tributes to the death of Elizabeth II.

Floral tributes in Green Park, London
Tributes left outside the British Consulate in Hong Kong

Google muted its homepage with a grey version of the normally colourful company logo. The National Memorial Arboretum set up books of condolence and announced tributes would be paid to the Queen at a special reading at Millennium Chapel. Blackpool Illuminations were unlit as a sign of respect, and they will become unlit again on the night of the funeral. Blackpool Tower is displaying the colours red, white and blue throughout the period of mourning. St Laurence's Church in Ludlow, Shrewsbury Abbey, Leeds Minster, St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Durham Cathedral, and the Parish Church of St Helier held memorial services. Members of the Sikh and Hindu communities also held prayers. Rotherham Minster held a memorial service for the Queen on 17 September, and Sheffield Cathedral will be holding a similar service on the eve of her funeral.

The ceremony that was due to be held to mark the transitioning of Colchester from town to city status was cancelled. Tynwald postponed its meeting on cost of living crisis until 22 September. The Last Night of the Proms and the Mercury Prize were among the events that were called off, while the Royal Opera House announced that they would not go on with the opening night of one of their new productions and will not be operating on the day of the state funeral. Several unions responsible for organising the strikes by postal workers and rail staff announced that they would postpone their actions "out of respect for her service to the country and her family". The Trades Union Congress also cancelled their annual conference as a sign of respect.

Numerous sporting events were postponed or suspended from 8 September until at least 11 September, including all football fixtures across the Home Nations, and the second day of England's third test match against South Africa. Some events have continued, but with a moment of silence observed before play, and all players wearing black armbands. Several rugby fixtures were postponed, with the exception of mini, junior and under-18 rugby matches, which were preceded by a period of two minutes' silence. The St Leger Stakes, the Champagne Stakes and the Park Stakes, the Doncaster Cup and the Flying Childers Stakes were all postponed. The St Leger Stakes started with a two-minute silence. Horse racing events on the day of the funeral have also been cancelled.

Extensive schedule changes took place across BBC Television, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Sky in order to show news coverage and obituary documentaries. Commercial television channels including UKTV and BT Sport suspended advertising breaks for a number of hours following the announcement and many commercial radio music stations switched to a sombre playlist in the days following the Queen's death. The BBC Radio 4 series The Archers included a conversation about the Queen's death, between Lynda Snell and Lilian Bellamy, as the first section of the episode broadcast on 11 September. The BBC soap opera EastEnders paid tribute to the Queen with a special scene that aired at the start of the episode broadcast on 12 September. The BBC will air Paddington films in honour of the Queen.

The Poet Laureate, Simon Armitage published a commemorative poem "Floral Tribute" on 13 September 2022; it takes the form of a double acrostic in which the initial letters of the lines of each of its two verses spell out "Elizabeth".

Republicanism in the Commonwealth grew in popularity after Elizabeth's death, particularly in Jamaica.


Two people were arrested in Scotland for public order offences after protesting against the monarchy during events related to the Queen's death. A Metropolitan Police deputy assistant commissioner said that "the public absolutely have a right of protest and we have been making this clear to all officers involved in the extraordinary policing operation currently in place and we will continue [to] do so".

Following the two arrests and criminal charges being made in Scotland and one arrest in England (which was later reversed), the Index on Censorship warned against the Queen's death being used "to erode in any way the freedom of expression that citizens of this country enjoy," while advocacy group Liberty stated that it was "very worrying to see the police enforcing their broad powers in such a heavy-handed and punitive way."

A silent protest took place outside Cardiff Castle during the King's visit to the Wales capital city on 16 September. As well as placards calling for abolition of the monarchy, the protestors held flags with the emblem of Owain Glyndwr. The protest was partly against the new King's immediate announcement that his eldest son would take the Prince of Wales title. It was led by various groups of trade unionists, republicans and Welsh independence groups, under the banner "Real Democracy Now". Former Senedd member, Bethan Sayed, was also to take part.

After certain events and services, such as sports games, medical appointments and food banks, were canceled or postponed after the Queen's death, some people in the United Kingdom took to social media to protest the cancellations and disruption of essential services during the official ten day mourning period.

Protests sparked from human rights campaigners upon Britain inviting Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia Mohammed Bin Salman to Elizabeth II's funeral.

Commemoration in other countries

Antigua and Barbuda

Antigua and Barbuda will host a service of thanksgiving and parade in the Queen's honour on 19 September, which has been declared a public holiday throughout the country. The Governor-General's Deputy, Sir Clare Roberts, and the Acting Prime Minister Steadroy Benjamin will preside in the absence of Sir Rodney Williams and Gaston Browne, who will both be present at the state funeral in London. The service will take place at the Cathedral of St John The Divine and will be officiated by Dwane Cassius, Dean of the Cathedral of the Anglican Diocese of the North East Caribbean and Aruba. The service will be followed by a parade of members of the Antigua and Barbuda Defence Force and the Royal Police Force of Antigua and Barbuda. The parade will commence from the Long Street entrance of the cathedral and proceed westwards, turning left on to Market Street, left on to High Street, left on to Cross Street, right at Bishopgate Street on to Independence Drive for the "Eyes Right and Salute" at Government House, the "Eyes Left and Salute" at the Cenotaph, then right on to High Street, right on to Corn Alley and right on to Long Street up to the APUA Telephone Exchange where the parade will be dismissed.


A National Memorial Service will take place on 22 September, the National Day of Mourning, at Parliament House in Canberra to mourn the passing of the Queen of Australia. The day will be observed as a National public holiday. One minute's silence will be observed at 11:00am across Australia.



A Memorial Service will be held at the St. George's Anglican Church on 25 September to mark the passing of the Queen of Grenada.


The official memorial service for the Queen of Jamaica will be held at the St. Andrew Parish Church, which will be headed by the Governor-General and the Prime Minister. The Custodes and Mayors will head the services in the parishes.


Two days of commemoration will take place in Niue to mark the passing of Niue's head of state. A series of events will take place on 18 and 19 September. On 19 September, a National Memorial Service will be held at the Taoga Niue starting at 8am. The memorial service will also mark the end of the Queen's funeral and burial. A national moment of reflection will take place at 8.15am, with people across Niue expected to take part. People are also asked to plant a tree on 19 September in memory of the Queen.

New Zealand

A State Memorial Service with a one-off public holiday will take place on 26 September to celebrate the life and reign of the late Queen of New Zealand. It will take place at the Wellington Cathedral of St Paul at 2pm, and will be televised and live streamed.

Solomon Islands

United States

A memorial service is to be held at the Washington National Cathedral, arranged in conjunction with the British Embassy in Washington, to which former US presidents and other dignitaries have been invited.