The Death of HM The Queen and Accession of King Charles III

Tributes have been made to Her Majesty the Queen following the announcement of her death on Thursday.  Books of condolence have been opened at local buildings including the Town Halls in Reigate and Crawley, and community centres in Horley and Banstead.

Photo above shows a Book of Condolence messages post box situated outside Reigate Town Hall for people to leave messages outside of the Town Hall’s opening times.

St Matthew’s Church in Redhill was among those which tolled its bells at midday on Friday and opened for prayer for members of the local community to give thanks to the Queen for her long years of service to our nation.

Her Majesty paid a number of visits to the local area over the years, most recently in 2011 with the Duke of Edinburgh to the reopening of the modernised East Surrey College in Redhill.  The Queen visited Crawley six times during her reign.

In 2006 she came to Queens Square, Thomas Bennett Community College, Varian Medical Systems and the Carey House sheltered housing scheme in West Green.  Her first visit to the town was in 1950 when, as Princess Elizabeth, she opened Manor Royal, the main road through Crawley’s industrial estate.  Shortly after, in 1958, Her Majesty the Queen officially opened Gatwick Airport.


Photo above courtesy Crawley Borough Council.  The Queen visiting Three Bridges in 1958.

Photo above courtesy Gatwick Airport.  The Queen arrived to open the rebuilt Gatwick Airport in 1958.

Photo above courtesy Gatwick Airport.  The Queen opening the North Terminal at Gatwick Airport in 1988.

Flags on local churches and Town Halls which had been lowered after the announcement of the Queen’s death, were raised again on Saturday morning to mark the start of King Charles III’s reign following the Principal Proclamation at the Accession Council at St James’ Palace in London.

Photo above shows St Mary’s Church in Oxted with the flag at half mast following the announcement of the death of Her Majesty the Queen. Photo courtesy Tracey Franklin.

Photo above shows Reigate Town Hall. The flags were flown at full mast for the Proclamation of King Charles III.  Photo credit Tracey Franklin.

The proclamation of the new King was read out in all countries and counties of the United Kingdom and ceremonies continued on Sunday.  The Mayor of Reigate and Banstead, Councillor Frank Kelly read the local proclamation for King Charles III at the Harlequin Theatre in Redhill.  

A ceremony was held in Crawley, read by The Mayor, Councillor Jilly Hart, in front of the Town Hall.  

The proclamation for the County of Surrey was held at Guildford Cathedral in the presence of the Lord Lieutenant of Surrey and ended with the National Anthem:

The High Sheriff of Surrey, His Honour Christopher Critchlow and the Choir of Guildford Cathedral.