Queen’s committal service: what is it and who is part of it?

·2-min read
The majority of those attending St George’s Chapel will not have been at the funeral service at Westminster Abbey (Steve Parsons/PA) (PA Wire)
The majority of those attending St George’s Chapel will not have been at the funeral service at Westminster Abbey (Steve Parsons/PA) (PA Wire)

Queen Elizabeth II’s state funeral will be held this coming Monday, which is now a bank holiday for the UK.

On September 19, the funeral will take place at Westminster Abbey at 11am, followed by a royal procession and a two-minute silence.

Part of the ceremonial send off includes a final service before the Queen’s private burial next to the Duke of Edinburgh at Windsor.

Here’s what you should know before the series of ceremonies next week:

What is the committal service?

At 4pm on Monday, a committal service will be held at St George’s Chapel in Windsor.

The service is more intimate ceremony where the royal family members and other guests will give their final goodbyes before the burial.

After the procession along Albert Road, which will include the King and members of the royal family, the Queen’s coffin will be carried in procession to the chapel.

Before the final hymn, the imperial state crown, the orb and the sceptre will be removed from the Queen’s coffin by the crown jeweller and placed on the altar by the dean of Windsor. These will be transported later to the Tower of London.

After the chorus commences, the King will place the Queen’s company camp colour of the Grenadier Guards on the Queen’s coffin – as she was colonel in chief of the most senior foot guards regiments.

Late-Night rehearsal held for Funeral of HM Queen Elizabeth II

A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (Jeremy Selwyn)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (Jeremy Selwyn)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (Jeremy Selwyn)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (Jeremy Selwyn)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (Jeremy Selwyn)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (Jeremy Selwyn)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (Jeremy Selwyn)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (Jeremy Selwyn)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)
A funeral procession marches through Parliament Square during a rehearsal (PA)

During this placement, the Lord Chamberlain – former MI5 spy chief Andrew Parker – will “break” his wand of office and place it on the coffin. This represents the end of his service to the Queen as sovereign.

As the coffin is lowered into the royal vault, the dean of Windsor recites a psalm and commendation. The garter king of arms will then pronounce Her Majesty’s styles and titles.

The sovereign’s piper will also play a lament during the Archbishop of Canterbury’s blessing.

Finally, the King’s version of the national anthem will conclude the service.

Who will be in attendance at the committal service?

Around 800 guests are expected to attend the committal service.

The congregation will be made up of King Charles III, members of the royal family and members of the Queen’s household, past and present, including those from private estates.

Realm prime ministers from the commonwealth countries will also be attending.

The Dean of Windsor will conduct the service, with the rector of Sandringham, Canon Jonathan Riviere, the minister of Crathie Kirk and the Queen’s chaplain, Rev Kenneth MacKenzie, and the Canon of St George’s Chapel, Martin Poll, reading prayers. Hymns will be sung by the choir of St George’s Chapel.