Prince Philip in 1996. -
MARY EVANS / SIPA
Prince Philip, husband of the Queen of England Elisabeth II, died this Friday at the age of 99.
Flags at half mast, funerals, period of mourning… The death of the Duke of Edinburgh is accompanied by a very strict and codified protocol.
After the death of Prince Philip, who died this Friday at the age of 99, it is time for Operation "Fort Bridge".
Across the Channel, the deaths of members of the royal family are indeed accompanied by very strict and codified protocols, developed in advance in order to cope with the day of the disappearance.
For Lady Diana in 1997, it was “Operation Tay Bridge”.
For Queen Elisabeth II, it will be “Operation London Bridge”.
Prince Philip takes the name of his protocol from a railway bridge located around Edinburgh, Scotland, in connection with his title of Duke.
“Fort Bridge is down” is also the code name the royal family used on Friday to communicate the death of the prince consort outside the family.
This is how the Prime Minister learned, one of the very first steps of the protocol.
As tradition dictates, a few minutes after the official announcement of the death, Boris Johnson offered his condolences to the royal family and paid tribute to Prince Philip, notably saluting his “extraordinary” life and work.
A speech in front of 10 Downing Street, where the British flags were half-masted, as were those of Buckingham Palace, the whole of the United Kingdom and all member countries of the Commonwealth.
Likewise, an official note announcing the death was posted on the palace gates.
The House of Commons (the lower house of Parliament) will be draped in black, and its members will wear a black armband, as will members of the royal family.
As reported on the
, MPs and TV presenters will also be asked to opt for a black tie, in order to mark mourning.
Funerals in small groups
Prince Philip's funeral will not be at Westminster Abbey but at St George's Chapel, Windsor,
according to the
Under health constraints related to Covid-19, the ceremony will also be accompanied by a military procession, the Duke of Edinburgh having served twelve years in the army.
As BFMTV specifies, it will therefore not be a national funeral usually reserved for princes consorts, but private funerals in smaller groups, as the deceased wished.
Heads of state from Commonwealth countries as well as some politicians could still be invited.
Finally, Prince Philip is expected to be buried in Frogmore Gardens, in the Royal Mausoleum in Windsor Park, where Queen Victoria (in 1901) and her husband Albert were buried.
The Queen of England in mourning
And Elisabeth II in all this?
The queen is now entering an eight-day period of mourning, during which all her commitments are put on hold.
According to tradition, no law should be enacted during this period, events related to the royal family are canceled, travel and meetings postponed.
This week of mourning will then be followed by an official 30-day royal mourning period.
Details on the date and schedule of the ceremony are expected to be communicated in the coming days by Buckingham Palace.
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