The Queen death: What is the Proclamation of Accession?

·5-min read
The scene after the crowning ceremony in Westminster Abbey (PA) (PA Archive)
The scene after the crowning ceremony in Westminster Abbey (PA) (PA Archive)

Following the news of Queen Elizabeth II’s death, King Charles III is now King of England.

The Queen died aged 96 at Balmoral Castle, Scotland, on Thursday, September 8.

Charles has succeeded to the throne and will be proclaimed at the Accession Council at 10 am on Saturday, September 10, in the State Apartments of St James’s Palace, Buckingham Palace said.

Clarence House also confirmed the Accession Council will be televised for the first time in history.

The new King of England will make an Accession Declaration.

What is Accession?

Accession is when a new Sovereign takes the throne following the death of the previous King or Queen.

The new King or Queen will succeed to the throne as soon as the previous King or Queen dies. They are proclaimed at an Accession Council in St James’s Palace, which will take place as soon as possible.

What is the Proclamation of Accession?

The Proclamation of Accession is the publicising of the accession. It is the formal method of sharing the news that the monarch has died and that the heir has acceded to the throne.

The Privy Council Office will call a meeting, at which the death of the Sovereign will be announced. The Clerk of the Council will read the Accession Proclamation aloud and the platform party will then sign it.

Then, the Lord President will explain how news of the proclamation will be spread and will give orders for firing guns at Hyde Park and the Tower of London.

The Proclamation of Accession is read out at St James’s Palace in London, and then again at the Royal Exchange, in front of the Lord Mayor of the City of London.

The proclamation will also be read in Edinburgh, Cardiff, and Belfast, and will be published in the Gazette.

Queen Elizabeth II - Her Final Year

Queen Elizabeth II smiles while receiving the President of Switzerland Ignazio Cassis and his wife Paola Cassis during an audience at Windsor Castle in Windsor, England, Thursday, April 28, 2022. (AP)
Queen Elizabeth II smiles while receiving the President of Switzerland Ignazio Cassis and his wife Paola Cassis during an audience at Windsor Castle in Windsor, England, Thursday, April 28, 2022. (AP)
Queen Elizabeth II looks at a fan as she views a display of memorabilia from her Golden and Platinum Jubilees in the Oak Room at Windsor Castle. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II looks at a fan as she views a display of memorabilia from her Golden and Platinum Jubilees in the Oak Room at Windsor Castle. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II is joined by one of her dogs, a Dorgi called Candy, as she views a display of memorabilia from her Golden and Platinum Jubilees in the Oak Room at Windsor Castle. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II is joined by one of her dogs, a Dorgi called Candy, as she views a display of memorabilia from her Golden and Platinum Jubilees in the Oak Room at Windsor Castle. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II presents the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry to Grace Nichols during a private audience at Windsor Castle. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II presents the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry to Grace Nichols during a private audience at Windsor Castle. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of York arrive at a Service of Thanksgiving for the life of the Duke of Edinburgh, at Westminster Abbey in London. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of York arrive at a Service of Thanksgiving for the life of the Duke of Edinburgh, at Westminster Abbey in London. (PA)
This new portrait of Queen Elizabeth II has been released by The Royal Windsor Horse Show to mark the occasion of her 96th birthday.  They are Fell ponies and the one on the right (in The Queen’s left hand) is called Bybeck Nightingale and the one on the left is Bybeck Katie . The image was taken in March in Windsor (PA)
This new portrait of Queen Elizabeth II has been released by The Royal Windsor Horse Show to mark the occasion of her 96th birthday. They are Fell ponies and the one on the right (in The Queen’s left hand) is called Bybeck Nightingale and the one on the left is Bybeck Katie . The image was taken in March in Windsor (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Windsor Horse Show, Windsor. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Windsor Horse Show, Windsor. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II at Paddington station in London, to mark the completion of London’s Crossrail project. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II at Paddington station in London, to mark the completion of London’s Crossrail project. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II and the Earl of Wessex next to a ticket machine at Paddington station in London during a visit to mark the completion of London’s Crossrail project (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II and the Earl of Wessex next to a ticket machine at Paddington station in London during a visit to mark the completion of London’s Crossrail project (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II departs following the A Gallop Through History Platinum Jubilee celebration at the Royal Windsor Horse Show at Windsor Castle. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II departs following the A Gallop Through History Platinum Jubilee celebration at the Royal Windsor Horse Show at Windsor Castle. (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II sitting in a buggy during a visit by members of the royal family to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2022 (PA)
Queen Elizabeth II sitting in a buggy during a visit by members of the royal family to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2022 (PA)

King Charles’ Proclamation of Accession

The Proclamation of Accession —signed on the day of the Queen’s death by members of the Privy Council — will be read out tomorrow at St James’s Palace.

“Whereas it hath pleased Almighty God to call to His mercy our late sovereign lady Queen Elizabeth II of blessed and glorious memory by whose decease the Crown is solely and rightfully come to the High and Mighty Prince Charles Philip Arthur George: we therefore the Lords Spiritual and Temporal of this Realm being here assisted with these her late Majesty’s Privy Council with representatives of other members of the Commonwealth with other Principal Gentlemen of quality with the Lord Mayor, Aldermen and Citizens of London do now hereby with one Voice and Consent of Tongue and Heart publish and proclaim that the High and Mighty Prince Charles Philip Arthur George is now by the death of our late sovereign of happy memory become King Charles the third by the grace of God.

“King of this realm and of her other realms and territories, head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the faith to whom her lieges do acknowledge all Faith and constant Obedience with hearty and humble Affection beseeching God by whom Kings and Queens do reign, to bless the Royal Prince Charles the third with long and happy years to reign over us. God save the King.”

Seventy photos for 70 years of the Queen’s record-breaking reign

2016: Queen Elizabeth II during a visit to the Prince’s Trust Centre in Kennington, London, to mark the 40th anniversary of the charity (PA)
2016: Queen Elizabeth II during a visit to the Prince’s Trust Centre in Kennington, London, to mark the 40th anniversary of the charity (PA)
1953: Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II (PA)
1953: Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II (PA)
1957: The Queen, in a gold lame dress, is seen in the Long Library at Sandringham shortly after making the traditional Christmas Day broadcast to the nation. On the desk are portraits of Prince Charles and Princess Anne. The Queen is holding the copy of ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’, from which she read a few lines during her message. The broadcast was televised this year for the first time and was carried by both the BBC and ITV. It was the 25th anniversary of the first radio message to the Commonwealth by her grandfather, King George V (PA)
1957: The Queen, in a gold lame dress, is seen in the Long Library at Sandringham shortly after making the traditional Christmas Day broadcast to the nation. On the desk are portraits of Prince Charles and Princess Anne. The Queen is holding the copy of ‘Pilgrim’s Progress’, from which she read a few lines during her message. The broadcast was televised this year for the first time and was carried by both the BBC and ITV. It was the 25th anniversary of the first radio message to the Commonwealth by her grandfather, King George V (PA)
2007: Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh at Broadlands for  their Royal Wedding Diamond Anniversary (PA)
2007: Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh at Broadlands for their Royal Wedding Diamond Anniversary (PA)
1952: The new Queen, Elizabeth II (formerly Princess Elizabeth), returns to Clarence House, London, with the Duke of Edinburgh from London Airport after the sudden death of her father, King George VI. She succeeded the King on his death a day earlier (PA)
1952: The new Queen, Elizabeth II (formerly Princess Elizabeth), returns to Clarence House, London, with the Duke of Edinburgh from London Airport after the sudden death of her father, King George VI. She succeeded the King on his death a day earlier (PA)
1954: Prince Charles and Princess Anne stand with their parents, the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh, on the balcony of Buckingham Palace following their return from the Commonwealth tour (PA)
1954: Prince Charles and Princess Anne stand with their parents, the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh, on the balcony of Buckingham Palace following their return from the Commonwealth tour (PA)
1955: Watched by Lady Churchill, Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill bows low to Queen Elizabeth II as he welcomes her and the Duke of Edinburgh to 10 Downing Street for dinner (PA)
1955: Watched by Lady Churchill, Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill bows low to Queen Elizabeth II as he welcomes her and the Duke of Edinburgh to 10 Downing Street for dinner (PA)
1956: The Queen strolls through Windsor Great Park with Prince Charles, Princess Anne, and two of her corgies. The were there to watch the Duke of Edinburgh play polo (PA)
1956: The Queen strolls through Windsor Great Park with Prince Charles, Princess Anne, and two of her corgies. The were there to watch the Duke of Edinburgh play polo (PA)
1958: Miners see the Queen wearing white overalls, scarf and helmet and black gumboots during her visit to Rothes Colliery Fifeshire. It was the Queen;s first visit to a coal mine and she spent about half an hour underground visiting the coal face (PA)
1958: Miners see the Queen wearing white overalls, scarf and helmet and black gumboots during her visit to Rothes Colliery Fifeshire. It was the Queen;s first visit to a coal mine and she spent about half an hour underground visiting the coal face (PA)
1959: Queen Elizabeth II and Duke of Edinburgh at Windsor joined by Sugar, one of the Royal corgis (PA)
1959: Queen Elizabeth II and Duke of Edinburgh at Windsor joined by Sugar, one of the Royal corgis (PA)
1960: The Queen holding Prince Andrew during an outing in the grounds at Balmoral, Scotland, where the Royal Family are on holiday (PA)
1960: The Queen holding Prince Andrew during an outing in the grounds at Balmoral, Scotland, where the Royal Family are on holiday (PA)

What is the Accession Declaration?

The Accession Declaration is an oath that the new Sovereign takes at their first Privy Council meeting. Queen Elizabeth II made her Accession Declaration two days after her father, King George VI, died.

Queen Elizabeth’s Accession Declaration

She said: “Your Royal Highnesses, my lords, ladies, and gentlemen: By the sudden death of my dear father I am called to assume the duties and responsibility of sovereignty. At this time of deep sorrow it is a profound consolation to me to be assured of the sympathy which you and all my peoples feel towards me, to my mother and my sister, and to the other members of my family.

“My father was our revered and beloved head, as he was of the wider family of his subjects: the grief which his loss brings is shared among us all. My heart is too full for me to say more to you to-day than that I shall always work, as my father did throughout his reign, to uphold constitutional government and to advance the happiness and prosperity of my peoples, spread as they are all the world over.

The scene after the crowning ceremony in Westminster Abbey (PA) (PA Archive)
The scene after the crowning ceremony in Westminster Abbey (PA) (PA Archive)

“I know that in my resolve to follow his shining example of service and devotion I shall be inspired by the loyalty and affection of those whose Queen I have been called to be, and by the counsel of their elected Parliaments. I pray that God will help me to discharge worthily this heavy task that has been laid upon me so early in my life.”

In November 1952, nine months after her father died, Queen Elizabeth II signed an Accession Declaration at her first State Opening of Parliament. The declaration was as follows:

“I, Elizabeth, do solemnly and sincerely in the presence of God profess, testify, and declare that I am a faithful Protestant, and that I will, according to the true intent of the enactments which secure the Protestant succession to the Throne, uphold and maintain the said enactments to the best of my powers according to law.”