The King has declared that a period of official Royal Mourning will be observed from today lasting until seven days after the Queen’s state funeral.
Royal Mourning is observed by members of the royal family, as well as staff in the royal households, and troops on ceremonial duties.
It has also been announced that gun salutes, one round fired for each of the Queen’s 96 years, will be fired from Hyde Park and the Tower of London at 1pm as the nation enters a period of national mourning, the details of which will be announced by the government.
In a statement, Buckingham Palace said: “Following the death of Her Majesty The Queen, it is His Majesty The King’s wish that a period of Royal Mourning be observed from now until seven days after The Queen’s Funeral. The date of the Funeral will be confirmed in due course.
“Royal Mourning will be observed by Members of the Royal Family, Royal Household staff and Representatives of the Royal Household on official duties, together with troops committed to Ceremonial Duties.
“Flags at Royal Residences were half masted yesterday, Thursday 8th September, and will remain half-masted until 0800hrs on the morning after the final day of Royal Mourning.”
The half-masting of flags at Royal Residences does not apply to the Royal Standard and the Royal Standard in Scotland when the King is in residence, as they are always flown at full mast.
Guidance on flags at other public buildings has been issued by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.
Royal gun salutes will be fired in London at 1pm, in Hyde Park by The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery, and at the Tower of London by the Honourable Artillery, with one round fired for each year of the Queen’s life.
There will be no physical books of condolence at royal residences, but an online Book of Condolence for those who wish to leave messages is available on the Royal website.
Dedicated sites for floral tributes from the public have been set up, in Green Park and Hyde Park near Buckingham Palace in London. In Windsor a dedicated site has been set up at Cambridge Gate on the Long Walk, with flowers brought inside the castle every evening, and placed on the Castle Chapter grass on the south side of St George’s Chapel and Cambridge Drive.
At the Sandringham Estate, members of the public are encouraged to leave floral tributes at the Norwich Gates. At Balmoral Castle, floral tributes can be left at the Main Gate. At the Palace of Holyroodhouse, members of the public are encouraged to give floral tributes to the Wardens at the entrance to The Queen’s Gallery, which will be laid on the forecourt grass in front of the North Turret of the Palace. At Hillsborough Castle, floral tributes may be laid on the Castle forecourt, in front of the main gates.
All royal residences will remain closed to the public until after the Queen’s state funeral, which is expected to be on Monday September 19, although that has not yet been officially confirmed.
This includes The Queen’s Gallery, and Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace, the Queen’s Gallery in Edinburgh. The Queen’s private estates at Balmoral Castle and Sandringham House, will also close for this period, as will Hillsborough Castle, the Queen’s official residence in Northern Ireland