So, Elizabeth II (the Queen) has died and Charles III is now the King.

It was widely reported that the day of her funeral would be a quasi-national holiday "day of mourning" but that, crucially, this wasn't an official bank holiday and that businesses were totally free to interpret this how they liked. In all likelihood, this would have meant nobody actually got the day off unless their boss was a raging monarchist.

However, since then, the King has "pronounced" that the day will in-fact be a bona fide bank holiday with all that entails. I've seen other reports that suggest he merely "approved" it.

So, that begs the question, did the King decide it was going to be a bank holiday and pronounce it so? Alternately, did Liz Truss decide it was going to be a bank holiday and then the King just signed off on it? A final option, did the King decide he wanted it to be a bank holiday, "suggested" to Liz Truss that it should be and she just went along with it?

Given Liz Truss is notoriously tight-fisted when it comes to bank holidays, I'm struggling to believe that this originated from her.

Also, I think understanding where this came from is important, as if the King did just proclaim it, he's already meddling in politics and this could be a sign of worrying things to come.

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    This is an interesting question, but how is proclaiming a day of mourning "meddling in politics"? That seems like a pretty big gap to me, unless the day was specifically chosen to disrupt some vote in Parliament, election, or other political activity.
    – Bobson
    Sep 11, 2022 at 2:35
  • Looks to me like the government (i.e. the Liz Truss government) put forward the draft proposals, and that is what Charles said "Approved" in reponse to - theguardian.com/uk-news/2022/sep/10/…
    – Daveoc64
    Sep 11, 2022 at 3:20
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    I'm minded to vote to close. No one knows. Best guess is that this was a Prime Ministerial decision, on civil service advice. It is perfectly possible that Charles was consulted, It is conceivable that he expressed an opinion. Perhaps in 30 years time there may be evidence released under the 30 year rule that would answer this. But unless someone leaks, the answer is "Don't know". So how would you propose this be answer in a way that isn't just opinion.
    – James K
    Sep 11, 2022 at 7:31
  • Everything about the Queen's death has been planned for decades which likely included this and everything else that is being announced.
    – Joe W
    Sep 11, 2022 at 14:24
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    She's tight fisted in the sense that she's not keen on having extra bank holidays. It's pretty well documented that she's opposed them in almost every case throughout her career as a parliamentarian. Tight fisted doesn't necessarily refer to money, it can refer to anything that can be given out. Sep 11, 2022 at 20:53

1 Answer 1


It’s impossible to know the content of the discussions which led to the presentation of the draft order to the King for his approval, but I think the question is still answerable in terms of clearing up the procedural matters.

The King approved a royal proclamation, drafted for him by the Liz Truss government and presented in the Privy Council by the Lord President, declaring the day of the Queen’s funeral as a bank holiday. You can see this happen at the meeting of the Privy Council after which Charles was proclaimed King (time stamped link).

This is not a sign of the King meddling in politics, but is in fact the only way in which extra bank holidays can be created (apart from by primary legislation). Section 1 subsection 3 of the Banking and Financial Dealings Act 1971 states:

Her Majesty may from time to time by proclamation appoint a special day to be, either throughout the United Kingdom or in any place or locality in the United Kingdom, a bank holiday under this Act.

The Monarch’s involvement in issuing instruments such as Royal Proclamations, approving Orders in Council, and even giving Royal Assent to legislation are inherent to the British system of constitutional monarchy, and there is nothing unusual about the King approving these. It would be far more unusual if approval was withheld!

In a very technical sense, the King could issue a Royal Proclamation granting a bank holiday on his own, without the government drafting it for him, in the same way that he could refuse to grant Royal Assent to a bill originating from Parliament. In reality, this does not happen.

While we can’t possibly know whether the King suggested the bank holiday to Truss and she accepted, I think even the politician with the least political savvy could probably divine that withholding the declaration of a bank holiday for the Queen’s funeral would be seen as a Bad Thing. That the bank holiday proclamation was presented to the King for approval at the very first opportunity lends credence to this theory.

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    With all the planning that has been done for her death over the past decades it would be strange that this was not also part of the plan from the very start.
    – Joe W
    Sep 11, 2022 at 14:27
  • @JoeW - It's been fairly widely reported that the original plan was for it to be a "national day of mourning" but not a true national holiday Sep 11, 2022 at 20:24
  • @ScottishTapWater That would be good information to include in your question as there are many that do not have all the details of what is going on. One of the key things I have been hearing is that plans for her death have been in the works since the 1960's and it would make sense to me that even this would be in those details. And it should be remembered that just because it was reported one way doesn't mean that the reporting in question is accurate.
    – Joe W
    Sep 11, 2022 at 21:20
  • It is only would be bad for those that want to mourn and don't want to do certain business with the banks ETC that day. Sep 12, 2022 at 15:55

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