Who has had a state funeral in the UK?

16 September 2022, 15:57 | Updated: 16 September 2022, 16:08

The monarch usually gets a state funeral
The monarch usually gets a state funeral. Picture: Getty Images/Alamy

Did Princess Diana have a state funeral and what does it mean?

Queen Elizabeth II is having a state funeral on Monday, September 19.

Her Majesty’s coffin will then be placed in a hearse to make the journey to Windsor for a committal service in St George's Chapel.

But what is a state funeral and who has had one in the UK?

The Queen will have a state funeral on Monday
The Queen will have a state funeral on Monday. Picture: Getty Images

Who has had a state funeral in the UK?

A state funeral is a public ceremony which is held to honour people of great national significance, such as a monarch.

The last state funeral was held for Sir Winston Churchill in 1965, who was the first state funeral for a non-Royal family member since Sir Edward Carson's in 1935.

While state funerals are predominantly reserved for the monarch, very rarely they have been held for other prominent people.

These include Sir Isaac Newton, Lord Nelson, the Duke of Wellington and William Gladstone.

Winston Churchill's state fineral
Winston Churchill's state fineral. Picture: Alamy

The only British monarch not to have been given a state funeral in the last 295 years was Edward VIII due to his abdication.

Other members of the Royal family are not automatically entitled to a state funeral, with Princess Diana, the Queen Mother and Prince Philip all having ceremonial funerals instead.

What is a ceremonial funeral and who has one?

Ceremonial funerals are usually held for other members of the Royal family and still require the reigning monarch to sign them off.

They are also mostly funded by the public, but Parliament doesn’t have to vote for this to go ahead.

The Duke of Edinburgh was given a ceremonial funeral when he died in 2021, as well as the Queen Mother in 2002 and Princess Diana in 1997.

In 2013, former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was also given a ceremonial funeral with full military honours.