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It has been announced that Queen Elizabeth II has died aged 96.
The news was confirmed by the Royal Family, who issued a statement in regard to the monarch’s passing on Twitter.
The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon.— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) September 8, 2022
The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow. pic.twitter.com/VfxpXro22W
The statement read: "The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon. The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow."
Prince Charles is expected to assume the role of King in the next coming days, as the world prepares to see the crown handed over to the Queen’s son and heir to the throne.
At 73, he will be the oldest monarch ever to take the British throne.
The death of the Queen marks a monumental moment of history: having ascended to the throne in 1952 aged just 27, she was the longest reigning British monarch, as well as the longest-serving female head of state ever.
Earlier this year, she reached 70 years on the throne and became the first British monarch to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee.
Her long reign bore witness to hugely significant moments in British history, including the legalisation of abortion and homosexuality, the Troubles and the Good Friday Agreement, as well as the UK joining (and subsequently leaving) the European Union.
During her reign, she worked alongside 15 Prime Ministers beginning with Winston Churchill and continuing through to new PM Liz Truss.
The Queen enjoyed widespread public favour and popularity throughout her lengthy reign, but she did find herself on the receiving end of criticism and republican sentiment; including in 1992, which she dubbed her ‘annus horribilis’ after her children's marriages broke down.
Queen Elizabeth II continued her service and public duties well into her old age, regularly touring and visiting parts of the UK and Northern Ireland, as well as other parts of the Commonwealth, where she was head of state.
Her last foreign trip was in November 2015 when she visited Malta for the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting.
Despite her advancing years, the Queen never considered abdicating the throne, having reportedly told family members she would not give up the crown unless ‘she had a stroke, or got Alzheimer’s’.
Last year, she lost her husband of 74 years, Prince Philip, who died in April 2021 just two months before his 100th birthday.
She described the death of Philip as having left a ‘huge void’ in her life.
In recent years, the Queen had stepped back from a number of public duties, with other members of the Royal Family stepping in to cover for her.