Will the Queen have a state funeral? When and what happens at royal funeral - did Diana have one?

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Queen Elizabeth has died after 70 years in power

Queen Elizabeth II has died at her holiday home at Balmoral Castle in Scotland, aged 96.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The death of Queen Elizabeth triggers a series of carefully constructed plans which have been referred to as Operation London Bridge.

But will the Queen have a state funeral and when will the royal occasion take place?

Queen Elizabeth met newly elected leader of the Conservative party Liz Truss just a few days before her death (Getty Images)Queen Elizabeth met newly elected leader of the Conservative party Liz Truss just a few days before her death (Getty Images)
Queen Elizabeth met newly elected leader of the Conservative party Liz Truss just a few days before her death (Getty Images) | Getty Images

When is the Queen’s funeral?

The funeral for Queen Elizabeth II will take place at 11am (BST) on Monday 19 September. The royal occassion will be held at Westminster Abbey.

Will there be a bank holiday for the Queen’s funeral?

King Charles III has confirmed that a national bank holiday will take place to commemorate the Queen’s funeral. The government issued a statement which said it will: “give as many people as possible the opportunity on the day of the state funeral to mark her majesty’s passing.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Will the Queen have a state funeral?

The royal family have confirmed that a state funeral will be held for Queen Elizabeth II.

A two minute silence will be held at midday for the Queen’s funeral.

There will be processions both in London and Windsor, with a service taking place at St George’s Chapel and the Queen will be buried at the King George VI Memorial Chapel in Windsor.

What happens at a state funeral?

A state funeral is a public funeral ceremony held to honour people of national significance. State funerals are held to include the general public during a national day of mourning.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

During a state funeral there will be a military procession where the coffin is borne on a gun carriage from the private resting chapel to Westminster Hall. In a royal ceremony this carriage is pulled by horses with the body remaining in Westminster Hall for three days.

State funerals are organised and overseen by the Earl Marshal and his officers.

When was the last state funeral?

The last state funeral to be held in the UK took place in 1965 following the death of former prime minister Winston Churchill.

Churchill was the prime minister of Britain during the second world war from 1940-1945 and served again as prime minister from 1951 to 1955.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Churchill was the first prime minister of Queen Elizabeth’s reign as monarch and a state funeral was held for Churchill in 1965 with the service taking place at St Paul’s cathedral and the burial taking place at St Martin’s Church.

The Queen Elizabeth II and the Prince Philip pose after the Queen’s Coronation, 02 June 1953 in Buckingham Palace (Getty Images)The Queen Elizabeth II and the Prince Philip pose after the Queen’s Coronation, 02 June 1953 in Buckingham Palace (Getty Images)
The Queen Elizabeth II and the Prince Philip pose after the Queen’s Coronation, 02 June 1953 in Buckingham Palace (Getty Images) | -/AFP via Getty Images

When was the last state funeral for a royal?

The last royal to have a state funeral was Queen Elizabeth’s father King George VI. The service and burial took place in 1952 at St George’s Chapel in Windsor.

Elizabeth was the oldest daughter of King George and stepped into power at the age of 25. This made her the youngest monarch since King Charles I in 1625.

What is the difference between a state and ceremonial funeral?

During the Queen’s reign in power there have been a number of notable funerals for royals such as the Queen Mother, Princess Diana and most recently the loss of her husband Prince Phillip.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

However many of these figures have had a ceremonial funeral rather than a state funeral. Although there are many similarities between the two, ceremonial funerals are often a more private affair than a state funeral.

The key difference between a ceremonial funeral and a state funeral is that a ceremonial funeral does not require parliamentary approval or funding.

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.