Information on planned commemorations, and information for the Victorian public.
Observances of Mourning
Will an official mourning period be declared?
The Commonwealth Government will declare any period of national mourning to be observed in Australia. This website will be updated as information becomes available.
Will Government House observe half-mast?
Flags at Government House Victoria - except the Governor's Standard - will be lowered to half-mast in accordance with flag protocol, except on the days of Proclamation for Australia and in Victoria, when the flags will be raised to full mast. Flag protocol dictates that flags may be flown at half-mast overnight, provided they are illuminated.
Why isn’t the Governor’s Standard at half-mast?
The Standard of the Governor of Victoria is a Personal Standard rather than a flag. It represents the Crown, which is continuous.
Where can I sign a Condolence Book?
Condolence books are available at Government House and Parliament House. Government House Condolence Books will be available from 8.00am – 6.00pm.
If you live in regional Victoria you should check with your local council about the availability of condolence books in your area.
You can also sign the online Condolence Book here.
A small memorial exhibition paying tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is being held at Government House
From Tuesday 13 September, a small memorial exhibition paying tribute to Her Majesty’s long reign will also be open for members of the public to view in the State Apartments, from 10am until 6pm each weekday (Monday to Friday) (last entry at the gate 5.45pm), until 6pm on Thursday 22 September. The exhibition is free to enter. Tickets and prior booking are not required. Please note however that visiting members of the public will be subject to bag checks and security wanding prior to being admitted to the grounds.
Who will represent Australia at The Queen’s funeral?
It is expected that Australia will be represented at the funeral by the Governor-General and spouse, and the Prime Minister and spouse.
What arrangements are in place in Victoria for The Queen’s funeral service?
A funeral service will be held to honour Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey, London, on Monday 19 September 2022.
For Victorians who wish to gather to pay their respects, a livestream will be available on the screen at Federation Square from 8:00pm AEST.
How long will the service run?
The funeral service is expected to last about an hour. It will be followed by a procession.
How can I get to Federation Square?
Federation Square is accessible by public transport. It is across the road from Flinders Street Station and also next to tram stop 13. The stop is serviced by trams 1, 16, 3 and 3a, 5, 6, 64, 67 and 72.
Is Federation Square accessible?
Federation Square is accessible.
Can I leave a tribute at Federation Square?
Victorians wishing to leave a tribute to Her Majesty are invited to do so at the gates of Government House. You may also consider signing the online condolence book.
What arrangements are in place in Victoria for the National Day of Mourning?
A National Day of Mourning will be held in Australia on 22 September.
On this day, a national memorial service will be held in Canberra from 11:00am AEST. The service will commemorate Her Majesty’s life and service.
Victorians are invited to gather at The Edge, Federation Square, to watch this service. The service will be livestreamed from 11:00am AEST.
Will there be an observance of silence in memory of The Queen?
The Commonwealth Government will advise on any national observances. This website will be updated as information becomes available.
Will churches be ringing bells?
Decisions whether to solemnly ring bells to mark the passing of The Queen are a matter for each congregation.
If it is decided by an organisation or group to ring bells, it is normal practice to chime/ring out for each year of The Queen’s reign.
Will there be an opportunity for the public to gather to pay respects to the Sovereign?
You are encouraged to lay flowers, tributes and mementos at a temporary memorial at the gates of Government House (Government House Drive, Melbourne, off St Kilda Road) and to sign the condolence books available physically at Government House, or online.
It is likely that some religious congregations will conduct services of thanksgiving for The Queen’s life.
What is the Governor’s role following the death of the Sovereign?
The Governor has constitutional responsibilities including:
- proclaiming the demise of The Crown and the accession of the new Sovereign under the Constitution of Victoria (following the proclamation in the United Kingdom and by Australia’s Governor-General);
- administering a new oath or affirmation to the Lieutenant-Governor, the Administrator of the State, and the Presiding Officers of the Parliament.
- formally notifying the Parliament of Victoria of The Crown’s demise; and
- issuing commissions to the Chief Justice, the President of the Court of Appeal and Presiding Officers of each House of Parliament to administer to Judges and to Members of Parliament oaths or affirmations of allegiance to the King of Australia.
What happens now constitutionally?
The accession of a new Monarch is immediate upon the death of a deceased Monarch. Although a Proclamation ceremony is not constitutionally required, one is traditionally held in order to announce the accession of the new Monarch.
In the United Kingdom, it is expected the new Sovereign will be proclaimed one or two days after the death of The Queen.
Following this, Australia’s Governor-General will proclaim the demise of the Crown and the accession of The King.
It is expected this will be followed by the Governors of each State of Australia making similar proclamations.
Does the death of the Sovereign impact on the Governor’s appointment or the laws of Victoria?
The death of the Sovereign does not affect the Governor’s appointment, the Governor’s powers, nor any rules or regulations enacted on behalf of the deceased Sovereign.
Do we need to have an election?
No. Although historically in the United Kingdom the death of the Sovereign would have triggered an election, in Australia the terms of the State and Federal Governments are unaffected by the passing of the Monarch.
Under Victoria’s Constitution, after the Victorian Parliament has been formally notified of the death of the Queen, Members of Parliament will need to take a new oath or affirmation, pledging allegiance to His Majesty King Charles III before they are able to sit in Parliament.
Will Parliamentary proceedings be suspended?
If Parliament is sitting, the Presiding Officers will suspend parliamentary proceedings until a day and hour to be fixed. Members will be sworn in once the new Sovereign has been proclaimed. Condolence motions in both the Legislative Council and the Legislative Assembly may occur on their next respective sitting days.
Images of the late Queen Elizabeth II
Is Australian currency with the Queen’s image still valid?
Yes. The death of Queen Elizabeth II does not impact on the value of any currency that bears her likeness or name.
Will the image of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on the Australian $5 note be replaced?
The design of Australian currency is a matter for the Royal Australian Mint, whose website is www.ramint.gov.au
Our organisation displays a portrait of Her Majesty. Should we take it down?
That is a matter for your organisation to decide. If you would like to keep existing portraits on display as a mark of respect, that is entirely appropriate.
Does everything bearing the likeness or the name of the late Queen need to be taken down?
That is a matter for individual organisations, however there is no requirement to do so.
His Majesty King Charles III, and other Members of the Royal Family
How do we write to the new King? What do we call him?
The new King of Australia should be referred to as His Majesty King Charles III. You can write to His Majesty at Buckingham Palace, at the following address:
His Majesty King Charles III
London SW1A 1AA
You should begin the letter ‘Your Majesty’
You can write to Prince William at:
HRH Prince of Wales
London W8 4PX
You should begin the letter ‘Your Royal Highness’
Is Prince William now The Prince of Wales?
Prince William and his wife, Catherine, have been named the new Prince and Princess of Wales by King Charles III.
The pair will also take the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall titles. The title of Duke of Cornwall passed to Prince William from his father upon the death of Queen Elizabeth. The Prince and Princess of Wales will also retain the title of Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Will The Duchess of Cornwall and Cambridge become Princess of Wales?
When King Charles III creates Prince William as The Prince of Wales, his wife, The Duchess of Cornwall and Cambridge, will automatically assume the feminine of his title and become The Princess of Wales.
Is King Charles the Head of the Commonwealth?
Yes. At the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London in April 2018, the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting formally announced that the then-Prince of Wales would become Head of the Commonwealth on the death of The Queen.
Will King Charles automatically become Patron of organisations of which The Queen was Patron?
No. Organisations seeking the patronage of The King should write to the Private Secretary to The King at Buckingham Palace seeking His Majesty’s patronage.
Will Barristers who are QC become KC?
Yes. Upon the accession of King Charles III, Senior Counsel cease being the Queen’s Counsel and become the King’s Counsel. Accordingly, at the moment of the death of the Queen, all Queen’s Counsel became King’s Counsel.
Do organisations that have Royal in their title need to stop using it?
No. Regardless of which Monarch granted the use of the style Royal, organisations who have received permission to use the style may continue to use it in their title.
Where can I get additional information?
More information can be found on the website of the Governor of Victoria www.governor.vic.gov.au as well as on the website of the Governor-General of Australia: www.gg.gov.au You may also wish to follow the Governor on both Twitter and Instagram at @VicGovernor for additional updates.
Follow developments in the UK via the official website for the Royal Family