Queen Elizabeth II, the UK’s longest-serving monarch, has died at Balmoral aged 96, after a reign of 70 years.
She died peacefully on Thursday afternoon 8th September, at her Scottish estate, where she spent much of the summer.
The Queen came to the throne in 1952 and witnessed tremendous social change in that time.
Her son King Charles III said the death of his beloved mother was a moment of great sadness for him and his family and that her loss would be deeply felt around the world. He said: “We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished sovereign and a much-loved mother.
“I know her loss will be deeply felt throughout the country, the realms and the Commonwealth, and by countless people around the world.”
The Bailiwick of Guernsey reacts
An official condolence message has been sent on behalf of the people of Guernsey by His Excellency the Lieutenant-Governor, in liaison with the Bailiff and the Chief Minister.
The condolence message from the Bailiwick of Guernsey reads:
‘We, the Lieutenant-Governor and the Bailiff of Guernsey, the Deputy Bailiff, the Royal Court and the States of Guernsey, the President and the States of Alderney, the Seigneur and the Chief Pleas of Sark, and all the people of this Bailiwick with humble duty beg leave to offer to His Majesty The King and His family our respectful and sincerest sympathy on the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, whose long and loyal reign stands as an inspiration to us all. Her Majesty will always be remembered with great affection across our islands, which she visited on six memorable occasions.’
His Excellency the Lieutenant-Governor, Lieutenant General Richard Cripwell CB, CBE, said: “I served Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in the Army for more than 40 years and it has been my honour and privilege to be her personal representative in the Bailiwick since February 2022. It was my most sad and solemn duty to receive official notification of the passing of Her Majesty and to convey it to others in the Bailiwick.
Even in this time of great sadness, I know that everyone in the Bailiwick will always remember Her Majesty’s exceptional devotion to her people, her extraordinary service to those she represented and her love of these Islands.”
The Bailiff, Richard McMahon, said: “Like others across the Bailiwick and throughout the world, I feel a profound sense of loss. Her Majesty offered an example to us all in her enduringly strong sense of duty and public service. She was an important figurehead for the UK, for the Bailiwick of Guernsey and for many other parts of the world throughout her reign. On behalf of the people of Guernsey, I have asked His Excellency the Lieutenant-Governor to send the Bailiwick’s official condolence message to Buckingham Palace.”
The Chief Minister, Deputy Peter Ferbrache, said: “Like many in our community, for as long as I can remember Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was the sovereign. As the longest reigning monarch in British history, she represented continuity, constancy and commitment to people in the Bailiwick and around the globe. It is sad, strange and unsettling to hear that Her Majesty is now lost to us.”
Period of National Mourning for Guernsey Bailiwick
The Bailiwick of Guernsey will observe a period of National Mourning which will last until the end of the day of the State Funeral, affording Island residents the opportunity to pay tribute and express their sadness. From 8am on 9th September, floral tributes can be laid at the Sunken Garden, where a portrait of Her Majesty will be placed.
Books of Condolence will also be opened at various locations around the Island in due course.
There will be a Special States Meeting tomorrow to pay tribute to Her Majesty. National Mourning is a time for reflection. Mourning is very personal and individuals, families, communities and organisations will want to mark Her Majesty’s death in their own way. There is no set way for the public to mark the passing of Her Majesty, but guidance will be provided for individuals or organisations who may wish to observe public mourning during this period. This guidance will cover matters such as the flying of flags, the ringing of church bells, and other events such as sports fixtures.
During the period of National Mourning there will be a special day across the British Isles as it will be Proclamation Day. National Mourning will be temporarily suspended for this event which will see a Special States Meeting for the official Proclamation of His Majesty, followed by a formal procession to the White Rock for a public Proclamation. Islanders are invited to attend and take part in this public ceremony, which will also serve as a focal point for expressing the Island’s ongoing allegiance to the Crown. The date and time of this event will be released in due course.
Further guidance and the full list of events related to the period of National Mourning will be made available here and all Islanders are encouraged to use this resource as guidance throughout this time as more information is added.
Jersey’s Chief Minister
Jersey’s Chief Minister Deputy Kristina Moore said: “Ministers and officials across Jersey’s Government are today sharing the profound sadness felt by Islanders at the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
“Her Majesty reigned for seventy years and during that time, was served by thirteen Lieutenant-Governors, nine Bailiffs and five Chief Ministers of Jersey.
“Her Majesty visited the Island on six occasions, first as Princess Elizabeth in 1949 when she attended a special sitting of the States Assembly held in the Royal Square and, most recently, for the Island’s Sixtieth Liberation Day celebrations in 2005.
“To the people of Jersey, Her Majesty was loyally toasted as La Reine, Notre Duc – the Queen, Our Duke – recollecting the thousand-year relationship between the Crown and the Island, from the time that her forebears were the Dukes of Normandy. Millions around the world have admired her strength of character, her sense of duty and her steadfast commitment to the British family and the Commonwealth upon which her legacy is imprinted.
“I will be writing to His Majesty The King to express the Government’s deepest sympathies and Islanders’ admiration for the life and service of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Her Majesty’s reign and her devotion to public service remains an inspiration to many Islanders.”
Tributes from the States of Alderney
States of Alderney President William Tate has today paid tribute to Her Majesty The Queen who died yesterday.
“It was with a profound sense of sadness that I was informed of the sudden death of Her Majesty. I know that the whole Community will share a deep sense of sadness at the loss of our beloved Queen.
We have a special relationship with the Crown which we as a community hold very dear. She has been an inspiration throughout her reign to all those who value loyalty, integrity, leadership and devotion to duty.
During her reign we were privileged to welcome her to our Island on four occasions after her accession to the throne. The Community embraced the Royal Visitors and demonstrated our continued commitment to the Crown.”
Ian Carter, Chairman of the Policy & Finance Committee, added his tribute on behalf of the States of Alderney: “Throughout these times of turmoil and change, The Queen has always been a constancy in our lives providing a thread of continuity and certainty. She has always been the lynch pin and in our mourning, we will remember the many ways she has touched our lives.”
A special meeting of the States of Alderney is being held at the Court Office today to pay tribute to Her Majesty. The President is laying a wreath outside the Island Hall at midday. A Book of Condolence has been opened in the Members Room of The Island Hall. It will be open from midday today and then again from Monday September 12th from 08:45 until 16:30 weekdays until further notice.
A reflection from Guernsey’s church leaders
On her twenty first birthday, the then Princess Elizabeth said: “I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service.”
In the past seventy-five years, much has changed. But for most of the people of the United Kingdom, the Crown Dependencies, the Commonwealth and many others across the world, Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has been one of the constants over those years. She has led us through the changes, the joys and the turbulence of the last seventy years with grace and a deep commitment to service.
Queen Elizabeth was deeply interested in the Crown Dependencies. She visited Alderney, Guernsey and Sark on many occasions, her last visit to Guernsey being in 2005 on the 60th anniversary of Liberation Day.
At the heart of her life, and what inspired and sustained Queen Elizabeth, was her Christian faith. We saw this most clearly in her Christmas Day addresses.
Much will be said in the coming days. One of the memories of Queen Elizabeth that we will retain was her Platinum Jubilee message, which she signed, ‘Your servant, Elizabeth R.’
At her Coronation in 1953, The Queen was anointed with holy oil for a life of service. She has fulfilled that commitment in an exemplary way. We thank God for her, and pray for the Royal Family, this Bailiwick of Guernsey, and the nations of the Commonwealth.
- The Very Reverend Tim Barker, Dean of Guernsey
- The Reverend Nicole Le Goupillot, Elim Churches in Guernsey
- Pastor John Ogier, Spurgeon Baptist Church
- The Reverend Canon Christopher Rutledge, Catholic Dean of the Bailiwick of Guernsey
- The Reverend Howard Stringer, Superintendent Minister, Bailiwick of Guernsey Circuit, The Methodist Church