Queen Elizabeth II passed away today at the age of 96 years old.

Queen Elizabeth II was the longest reigning monarch in British history who served 70 years on the throne.

Now that Queen Elizabeth II has passed away a lot of people are asking what happens next.

Well, there is an all-hands protocol that tells the government exactly what to do in this situation. The protocol was set up in the 1960s to make sure that the transition of the crown from Queen Elizabeth to King Charles III would be a smooth process.

The protocol is called Operation London Bridge and it is the 10-day plan for what is to come next for Great Britain.

When Queen Elizabeth passed away the code “London Bridge is down” was used to communicate to the most senior Buckingham Palace staff and members of the British government that the Queen’s death had taken place.

After Government officials were notified of the Queen’s passing all flags across Whitehall, home of the UK Government's main offices, were lowered to half staff.

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At this point, the news media was alerted with the BBC being the first network to carry the news. An interesting thing to point out is that broadcasters at the BBC have black ties ready at all times for when the news of a monarch’s death breaks.

Of course, plans do change but for the most part, this protocol will stay intact. Today will be known internally to the staff and government of the British Monarchy as “D-Day.” Tomorrow will be known as “D+1” all the way until “D+10.”

On “D+10” a Day of National Mourning will be declared.

Over the next 10 days, there will be several events that will honor her majesty and start the transition from a Queen to a King.

Tomorrow on “D+1” the Accession Council will meet at St James’ Palace to officially announce King Charles III as the King.

Since the queen passed away at Balmoral, she will lie in rest in her small palace at Holyroodhouse, in Edinburgh.

It is being reported that the Queen’s coffin will then be carried up the Royal Mile to St Giles’s cathedral for a reception before being put on board the Royal Train at Waverley station. Crowds of mourners are expected to gather at stations along the journey down the east coast mainline to throw flowers on the passing train.

Queen Elizabeth death
Eddie Mulholland, Getty Images

Eventually, the beloved monarch’s body will arrive at the throne room in Buckingham Palace and Operation London Bridge will continue.

There will be several small and intimate ceremonies that will take place among the government and family. These ceremonies will honor the Queen’s immense life and service to the crown.

Everything will wrap up on the 10th day with the Queen’s formal funeral at Westminister Abbey.


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