Following the announcement of the death of HM Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday 8th September 2022, a short ceremony was held by the War Memorial on Saturday 10th September to allow residents to remember The Queen and pay their own tribute.
The Order of Ceremony was:
Vice-Chair of the Parish Council, Cllr Colin Sully, read the following tribute:
We come together this afternoon following the death of our late Sovereign Queen Elizabeth. Our sadness at this time is shared by people across the globe, as we remember with affection and gratitude the lifetime of service she has given.
There will be many gatherings in churches and cities, towns and villages all across the land, where people will pay their respects to her Majesty… indeed you may well be attending other events.
We are gathered here today as a community in The Lee to share our sadness and to pay our respects.
Looking back to Her Majesty’s recent Platinum Jubilee, it would have been clear to anyone visiting The Lee, at that time, just how much affection was felt for her… and how that feeling was spread across so many generations. The parish has rarely seen such an out-pouring of joy. Some of us are old enough to have lived under an earlier Monarch but many in the community will have known just one Monarch – Queen Elizabeth II.
Those that have spoken about the Queen in the media and elsewhere, and especially those that have met her – and we know there are many in The Lee – speak of her intelligence, of her charm, her calmness and her sense of humour. But the words which come up most often in describing the Queen seem to be an admiration for her intense sense of Duty and of Service. These qualities, of Duty and Service, are much valued in any community, large or small, and especially amongst its leaders. Our Queen has set an example for all.
Laying of flowers
A wreath was laid on behalf of the Parish Council and residents by the Clerk, Hayley Farrelly, following which others were invited to lay their own floral tributes.
At this point, can I remind everyone that Revd Haywood has opened a Book of Condolences at St John the Baptist Church.
We will all have our own individual memories and thoughts on the Queen and on her reign, so shall we take a minute now to quietly reflect on her reign, on these qualities of Duty and Service and on the lasting impact she may have left on us all.
The basis on which our monarchy is built has ensured that through the centuries the Crown has passed in an unbroken line of succession. This morning, the Accession Council met at St James Palace to proclaim our new Sovereign. That ceremony does not create a new King; the Proclamation is simply an announcement of the accession which in fact took place immediately on the death of Queen Elizabeth.
The Accession Council also made an order this morning requiring the High Sheriffs (yes, we do still have such people) to cause the Proclamation to be read in their various areas of jurisdiction. The High Sheriff of Buckinghamshire will discharge that duty in Aylesbury tomorrow.
However, in an age where modern methods of communication convey news around the globe in an instant, this reading of the Proclamation is no longer how most people learn for the first time that they have a new Monarch. Indeed the BBC has broadcast the Proclamation live this morning…. And I’m guessing you all knew we had a new King before you came here.
However, this is the first occasion when the community of The Lee has an opportunity to come together and reflect not only on the moment in history when the reign of our longest serving Monarch has come to an end… but also the moment a new Sovereign – King Charles III – has succeeded to the throne.
The Proclamation and ceremony remind us that King Charles III, has also promised to dedicate himself in service and duty to the nation and to the commonwealth.
Rather than read the Proclamation, we invite Revd Chris Haywood to offer a Prayer for King Charles III.
Prayer for King Charles III
Almighty God, we give you thanks for Charles your servant and our King, for his devotion to his family, nation and Commonwealth and to the Earth, our fragile home. We thank you for his faith in you and his love for all peoples and for his call to be our sovereign in such a time as this.
Bless and protect Charles in all the years to come, grant him long to reign over us and give him gifts of wisdom and discernment as together we face the opportunities and challenges of our age. Bless Camilla the Queen Consort, William, Prince of Wales, and all the Royal Family in this time of mourning and of change.
May we all abide in your love, draw strength from the deep wells of Christian hope and dedicate ourselves afresh to God’s kingdom of justice and peace.
Through Jesus Christ our Lord.
The brief ceremony concluded by recognising this succession in our monarchy by singing one verse of our new National Anthem, “God Save The King”.
God save our gracious King
Long live our noble King
God save The King.
Send him victorious,
Happy and glorious,
Long to reign over us
God save The King.