We share the all important details on where the Queen will be buried when the sad day comes.
It’s not something we royal fans want to think about. But following the Queen’s recent Accession day speech, in which she outlined her “sincere wishes” for Camilla to be Queen Consort when her son rules, many are wondering what the future holds when Queen Elizabeth II’s reign comes to a close.
Whilst we know there’s specific plans in place for when the Queen dies, there’s the matter of her funeral and burial to be had too. And many loyal fans want to know where Britain’s longest serving monarch will be laid to rest. As a previous member of the royal line of succession and ruling Queen she is expected to be buried in an extra-special location alongside these previous monarchs.
Where will the Queen be buried?
When Queen Elizabeth II dies she will be buried at the King George VI memorial chapel alongside her parents. Located within St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle, next to the North Quire aisle in the building, it was built between 1968 and 1969 and commemorates it’s namesake – King George VI, the Queen’s father.
Her Majesty will be laid to rest alongside her father, the Queen Mother and her sister Princess Margaret. King George’s VI’s coffin was originally placed in the Royal Vault following his death in February 1952. But it was later transferred to the chapel upon it’s completion on 26 March 1969.
The memorial chapel pays tribute to the Queen’s father, the founding member of the royal firm. And as such a plaque of George VI’s head is hung on the wall above his engraved grave on the floor.
The Queen’s sister Princess Margaret joined the memorial chapel in 2002. But instead of a grave, her ashes are placed next to her parents. As the late Countess of Snowdon chose to be cremated and not buried.
Will the Queen be buried with Prince Philip?
Yes, Queen Elizabeth II will be buried with Prince Philip. Prince Philip was temporarily laid to rest in the Royal Vault at Windsor Castle on 17 April 2021. However, when the Queen dies, his coffin will be moved to King George VI’s memorial chapel to join his wife.
It seems fitting that the Queen and Prince Philip be together forever especially as the couple were married for over 73 years. Around the time of his death and Prince Philip’s funeral, the Queen described her late husband as her “strength and stay”.
Prince Philip is in good company in the Royal Vault, which is the resting place of several British monarchs including King George III, IV and V.
His mother Princess Alice of Battenberg was also temporarily placed in the royal crypt upon her death in 1969. Though she was later moved to the Church of Mary Magdalene, Jerusalem in 1988. This was apparently where she wished to be laid.
What is the Royal Vault and who is buried there?
The Royal Vault is a crypt situated beneath St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle. Over 200 years old, it was commissioned by King George III in 1804 and has since became the famous resting place of British monarchs, superseding Westminster Abbey. To date, there are 25 members of the Royal Family buried in the vault.
Princess Amelia, daughter of George III – 1810)
Princess Augusta, Duchess of Brunswick, sister of George III – 1813
Stillborn son of Princess Charlotte – 1817
Princess Charlotte, daughter of George IV – 1817
Queen Charlotte, wife of George III – 1818
Prince Edward, Duke of Kent, father of Queen Victoria – 1820
King George III – 1820
Prince Alfred, son of George III – died 1782, placed in vault 1820
Prince Octavius, son of George III – died 1783, placed in vault 1820
Princess Elizabeth, daughter of William IV – 1821
Prince Frederick, Duke of York – 1827
King George IV – 1830
Still-born daughter of Prince Ernest Augustus, son of George III – 1818)
King William IV – 1837
Princess Sophia, daughter of George III – 1840
Queen Adelaide, wife of William IV – 1849
Prince Frederick of Schleswig-Holstein, son of Princess Christian – 1876
King George V of Hanover – 1878
Victoria von Pawel Rammingen, daughter of Princess Frederica of Hanover – 1881
Princess Mary Adelaide, Duchess of Teck, mother of Queen Mary – 1897
Prince Francis, Duke of Teck, father of Queen Mary – 1900
Princess Frederika of Hanover – 1926
Prince Adolphus, Duke of Cambridge, grandfather of Queen Mary – died 1850, placed in vault 1930
Princess Augusta, Duchess of Cambridge, grandmother of Queen Mary – died 1889, placed in vault 1930
Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, husband of Queen Elizabeth II – 2021
Inside the Vault
The vault is a stone-lined room with wall shelves that hold the coffins. It also features a small altar at the far end, where in the past royals would go to reflect and pay tribute to their lossed loved ones. Close to the entrance of the vault is a plinth where the latest arrival – in this case Prince Philip – is placed, before being moved to their final resting place.
Not all royals are buried in the royal vault though. Queen Victoria built herself a mausoleum at Frogmore in Windsor Great Park, which is where she and her husband Prince Albert lay. Frogmore also features the Duke of Windsor and his wife Wallis Simpson in the Royal Burial Ground.
Prior to the vault, royalty were buried at London’s Westmister Abbey. 16 former kings and queens of England can be found here, with the last being King George II in 1760. It was his son George III who went forth and built the royal vault at Windsor – in part to the fact that there was limited space for future burials.
What coffin will the Queen be buried in?
It is thought that the Queen will be buried in a lead-lined coffin. This is the traditional choice for royal family members as it is airtight and helps preserve the body for longer, preventing moisture from getting in.
Factors like this have to be considered because the Queen’s coffin is expected to be on display to the public following her death. This will be for a few days before her funeral.
Prince Philip’s coffin was also made from English oak and lined with lead. It was reported that this was made thirty years prior by specialists Henry Smith:
“Henry Smith were the last coffin makers in London,” author and funeral historian Brian Parson says. “They specialised in high-end coffins and were known to be the best, so it’s no surprise the Royals picked them. The coffin would have taken weeks to make.”
Will the Queen have a state funeral?
Yes as a monarch, Queen Elizabeth II will automatically receive a state funeral. This will be held at Westminster Abbey and conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury with Royal Family members, politicians and heads of state from across the globe in attendance.
For the historic funeral, the London Stock Exchange and banks across England will be closed on the day.
According to Politico, plans called ‘Operation Feather’ detail that the Queen’s coffin will “lie in state at the Palace of Westminster for three days” before her funeral. This will allow members of the public to come and pay their respects to their Queen.
Other details of the plans state that after the Westminster funeral, there will be “a committal service in St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle, and the queen will be buried in the castle’s King George VI Memorial Chapel”.
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