What happens now that Queen Elizabeth is dead?
Here's everything to know about the protocols, rules, and the ascension of the British throne after the Queen's demise.
The Royal Family announced the monarch's passing on Thursday, September 8, 2022, at the age of 96.
"The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon," a statement issued by Buckingham Palace on Thursday evening at 6:30 p.m. BST read.
Earlier in the day, Doctors at the Balmoral had placed the Queen under supervision over concerns for her health.
Elizabeth ascended the throne at the age of 26 and reigned for 70 years, making her the world's longest reigning monarch after the death of King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand in 2016.
What happens now?: The Queen's death is likely going to send shock waves across the globe, but more curiously, it's going to cause a huge cultural, social, and political shift in the entire Britain and the Commonwealth countries.
Pulse brings to you the trivial disruptions and sheer cultural changes that will happen now that the Queen is no more.
Operation London Bridge: Even though the death of the Queen ushered in a sad occasion, the Crown has been preparing for this day since the 1960s.
Inside the Buckingham Palace, this plan is known to as Operation London Bridge, this means that the steps that will be taken after the Queen's death has been carefully scripted and will be followed will utmost dedication.
The Call: This bridge has probably been crossed at the time of the Queen's death. Her private Secretary, Sir Edward Young, would put a call through to the Prime Minister on a secure line saying “London Bridge is down.”
It'll be interesting to know that the newly appointed Prime Minister, Liz Truss, met with the Queen just two days ago as the successor of Boris Johnson, who bid his farewell to the Queen earlier that day.
The Notification: After the Prime Minister has been informed, the news will go out to 15 governments where the Queen was still head of state including Jamaica, New Zealand, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Canada, and the Bahamas.
Thereafter, officials in the 38 other nations that make up the Commonwealth would also be alerted to the development while a footman dressed in black would pin an official notice to the gates of Buckingham Palace.
The Alarm: An alarm that signals national emergencies will be sounded on the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC). It's believed that many workers there have have no idea what it sounds like, but it went off when the Queen died.
When this happens, the usually red BBC logo would be changed to black and all anchors would change into black suits and ties to signal mourning.
The Change of Power: Flags would be lowered at half-mast and her successor, Prince Charles, automatically becomes the, king although unofficially. He is expected to make his first speech as Head of State as early as the same day.
The following day, the flags will go back up again and at 11:00am UK time Charles will be officially confirmed as the king with Camilla becoming the UK’s queen.
The new king will then go on a tour of the UK making stops in Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales to attend services. While all that is going on, Westminster Hall will be prepped for Elizabeth’s funeral.
The Queen's funeral: The funeral rites will kick off with a procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall four days after Elizbeth's death. This will be attended by two thousand invited guests, largely consisting heads of states and will be broadcast globally.
The Queen's remains is expected to be buried next to her late husband, Prince Philip, and her father, King George VI.
More on Operation London Bridge: There's a lot more to this carefully conceived plan for the monarch's passing, which is incredibly detailed.
For instance, because Elizabeth died at Balmoral, her body will first lie in Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh, before being carried up the Royal Mile to St. Giles’s Cathedral and then returned to London.
The BBC will also suspend all comedy shows for 12 days from the day of her death and the most predictable one is that the words to the national anthem will change to “God Save the King.”
Other things that will happen
- The London Stock Exchange will be closed on the day of the funeral, which will impact the economy.
- There will be a statutory holiday in the UK and the same may take place in Commonwealth realms, at the discretion of their governments.
- The Union Jack flag will be flown at half-mast until after the funeral in the UK and overseas although NOT the Royal Standard. Since it represents the Monarchy, which is continuous, it would be appropriate for the Royal Standard to fly at half-mast.
- New currency will be printed immediately.
- Police will get new insignia on their helmets, passports will be updated as well as military insignia.
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