Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, has hit an impressive milestone after celebrating his 98th birthday this week. However, as the Duke continues to advance in age, some are beginning to wonder what will happen when he eventually passes on.
According to Express UK, there are no immediate concerns regarding the death of Queen Elizabeth’s husband, who retired from public life in 2016, but that still doesn’t mean many are curious about what his death would mean for his wife’s reign-or how his life would be honored. The website reports that plans are already in place however when it comes to the way his death will be handled.
The website reports that the BBC will break the news first after being informed by the palace and that if his death should occur overnight, the official announcement is to be made promptly at 8 a.m. the following morning. Flags will also be immediately flown at half-mast and the Prime Minister will decide what events will be suspended for the day in response.
From there, it is expected that like other heads of state and important figures, the King Consort will then lie in state, though he will likely prefer a quieter affair than the kind his wife would receive. It is believed he will lie at St James’s Palace as funeral preparations are made, and the public will not be able to view his body.
Though he is entitled to a full-blown state funeral, Prince Philip is said to not want a “fuss,” and has been closely involved in the preparations, the website reports. He is expected to have a military-style funeral service at St. George’s Chapel, where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, as well as Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank, all married. However, it will also be a private affair, attended by family, friends and heads of state from the Commonwealth countries. His burial would then follow at the Frogmore Gardens.
As for the Queen, she will immediately enter a Royal Mourning period of eight days after Prince Phil dies, during which time no new bills will be given Royal Assent to become law and state affairs will be suspended. She is set to resume her duties behind closed doors after the funeral and will continue to mourn in private. The royal family is all expected to enter an official mourning period for 30 days at that point.
However, Prince Philip’s death will have no effect on the line of succession since Queen Elizabeth is the monarch. The order in line for taking over would remain with Prince Charles taking over next, followed by Prince William and Prince George. Unless the Queen chose to abdicate following her husband’s death, something she isn’t expected to do, Prince Charles will not become King.
Though she isn’t expected to abdicate, the Queen could retreat from public life overall with less public appearances.