The King has confirmed a UK bank holiday for Queen Elizabeth II's funeral

·3-min read
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

UPDATED (10 September)

Following the sad news that Queen Elizabeth II passed away on 8 September, the nation has entered a period of Royal Mourning, which is expected to continue until seven days following the state funeral. And while a decision has not been made on which date Her Majesty's state funeral will be, King Charles III has just approved an order which allows for a bank holiday on the day.

According to Operation Unicorn, it's expected to be held on D-Day+10 (10 days after Her Majesty's passing).

As Her Majesty's death was announced at 6.31pm on 8 September, many are suggesting plans may shift a day later to ensure sufficient time for complex arrangements, meaning her funeral might fall on Monday 19 September 2022, instead of Sunday 18 September 2022.

The former monarch's funeral is thought to take place at Westminster Abbey. Afterwards, a committal service will be held at St George's Chapel in Windsor where Queen Elizabeth II will be buried in the King George IV Memorial Chapel, alongside late husband Philip.

Will Queen Elizabeth II's funeral result in a bank holiday?

On the day of his declaration as King (10 September), the new monarch signed an order which approved a bank holiday to be held on the day. Prior to this, official documents drawn up by the cabinet office in 2021, and later obtained by Politico, say there were no known government plans to order employers to give employees the day off.

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

Will events be cancelled?

Many events and venues have chosen to postpone or cancel plans as a sign of respect to Her Majesty. Those include:

  • The Mercury Prize

  • The Last Night Of The Proms

  • The Premiere League's weekend games

  • The NI Football League's weekend games

  • The EFL's weekend matches

  • The cricket Test match between England and South Africa

  • Kew Gardens and Wakehurst

  • The Women's Super League

  • The Great North Run

  • And many more

The government's guidance states cancelling or postponing sports fixtures is not obligatory and "at the discretion of individual organisations", including on the day of the state funeral.

Will shops close?

Though some shops may choose to close on the day of Her Majesty's funeral (especially those on the route of procession), it's not thought that it will be obligatory. Instead, they may choose to reflect the sombre mood of the country with their choice of music or by dimming the lights.

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

Will schools close?

Now that a bank holiday has been approved, schools are likely to close on the day of the funeral although no official guidance has been issued as of yet. An email sent by the Department of Education [8 September] suggests schools should "remain open" during the period of national mourning, but that they "may want to consider conducting special activities, holding assemblies or adapting planned lessons to reflect the period of national mourning and commemorate the life of Her Majesty."

It also added, "While normal attendance is expected, headteachers continue to have the power to authorise leaves of absence for pupils in exceptional circumstances", and that it would issue further guidance when news of the funeral arrangements has been confirmed.

Will rail and postal strike go ahead?

The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union announced yesterday [8 September] that planned strikes on the 15 and 17th September will be cancelled, as a mark of respect. The Transport Salaried Staffs Association has also called off planned strikes in September, alongside the Communication Workers Union (CWU) who cancelled postal strikes on Friday.

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