Plans for Queen Elizabeth II’s death have been worked out in detail in an operation codenamed “London Bridge.”
The monarch’s health has been the subject of speculation in America after gossip website Hollywood Unlocked falsely announced that she had passed away.
The website’s story was greeted by silence from the royal family and British government in contrast to the frenzied activity that will follow when that time inevitably really does arrive.
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No, the Queen is Not Dead. Here’s How to Spot a HoaxQueen Elizabeth Took her last breath at 96, Mission London Bridge Activated.
Official plans for “London Bridge” were leaked to Politico in September and show the British prime minister will be among the first to be informed.
Elizabeth’s private secretary will make the call, stating that “London Bridge is down” before other major government officials are told.
Civil servants will be instructed to tell ministers the news using a formal script that reads: “We have just been informed of the death of Her Majesty The Queen,” Politico reported.
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Meanwhile, a public announcement will be made via the Press Association and to the world’s media simultaneously.
Government departments have been set a target to have flags lowered to half-mast within 10 minutes and business will be canceled for the day in the U.K. Parliament as well as the devolved assemblies in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Whoever is prime minister, currently Boris Johnson, will make a statement, there will be gun salutes and the next monarch will broadcast an address to the nation.
The Prince of Wales will automatically become king when the queen passes away, though his coronation will not be for some time.
Elizabeth’s father, King George VI, died while she was abroad in Kenya and she had a struggle to return home amid bad weather, on February 6, 1952.
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- Queen Elizabeth Took her last breath at 96, Mission London Bridge Activated.
She had become queen straight away, even before her accession proclamation was made on February 8.
Quoted by The Guardian at the time, the queen, then 25, said: “I pray that God will help me to discharge worthily this heavy task that has been laid upon me so early in my life.”
Charles, by contrast, is currently 73. His proclamation would take place one day after the queen’s death at a meeting of the Accession Council at St James’ Palace at 10 a.m.
Parliament will be suspended for 10 days after issuing a message of condolence to the royal family.
The current plans are for the queen’s coffin to be brought to Buckingham Palace two days after her death, where government ministers will gather to pay their respects.
Newly proclaimed King Charles will receive a motion of condolence at Westminster Hall, in London, three days after his mother’s death before beginning a tour of Britain, Politico reported.
Lying in State
That day he will visit the Scottish parliament before attending a service at St. Giles Cathedral in Edinburgh.
Charles will visit Northern Ireland four days after her death and the day after that Elizabeth’s coffin will move in a procession to the Palace of Westminster where she will lie in state for several days.
The new king will visit Wales seven days after her death, while government departments arrange the funeral.
Tourists will be expected to descend on London, while heads of state from around the world will arrive to attend the service.
Britain will ultimately say goodbye to its longest reigning Monarch in history after more than 70 years on the throne at Westminster Abbey 10 days after her death.