Britain’s longest reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth II died at Balmoral, her home in Scotland, aged 96 on Thursday 8th September 2022. A statement from Buckingham Palace read, “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.”
Queen Elizabeth’s eldest son, Charles, now aged 73, has become king of the United Kingdom and the head of state of 14 other jurisdictions including Australia, Canada and New Zealand. His wife, Camilla, will become queen consort. When Prince William becomes king, his wife Kate will become the official queen.
It was announced that the queen’s health was deteriorating rapidly on Thursday 8th September in the afternoon as doctors prompted all of her immediate family members to come to her bedside in Balmoral. According to Buckingham Palace, the monarch had been suffering with “episodic mobility problems” since the end of 2021, which meant that she became less able to attend public engagements.
Her last public engagement was on Tuesday 6th September, when she appointed Liz Truss prime minister — the 15th in her reign as Queen of England.
With the country in mourning, flags have been lowered to half-mast across government buildings and palaces. Queen Elizabeth II, who was also the world’s oldest and longest-serving head of state, began her reign following the death of her father King George VI on 6th February 1952, when she was just 25.
On her coronation, she said, “I have in sincerity pledged myself to your service, as so many of you are pledged to mine. Throughout all my life and with all my heart I shall strive to be worthy of your trust.”
At her death the queen was head of state for the United Kingdom, Australia, the Bahamas, Belize, Canada, Grenada, Jamaica, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Saint Lucia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Tuvalu, the Solomon Islands, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and Antigua and Barbuda.