Factbox-What changes will UK see with a new monarch? By Reuters

© Reuters. The UK flag flutters at half mast at Buckingham Palace, after Queen Elizabeth, Britain’s longest-reigning monarch and the nation’s figurehead for seven decades, died aged 96, according to Buckingham Palace, in London, Britain September 8, 2022. REUTERS/To

LONDON (Reuters) – From a new face on the country’s stamps and coins to new words for the national anthem, Britain will see changes with the death of Queen Elizabeth and the accession of her son Charles to the throne.

Here are some aspects of British daily life that will be different:


– The words of the British national anthem, which in its present form dates back to the 18th century, will change from “God Save the Queen” to “God Save the King”.

According to the royal family’s website, the anthem came to prominence amid the patriotic fervour that followed the 1745 victory of Prince Charles Edward Stuart over King George II’s army in Scotland, and was sung in London theatres.

Usually only the first verse is sung and this will now be: “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.”


Newly minted and printed coins and banknotes will feature the head of the king, as the monarch’s image is shown on British currency. Old coins and banknotes will remain in circulation until they are gradually replaced over time.

However, since the monarchy was restored following the 10-year republic of Oliver Cromwell in 1660, it has become traditional for the monarch to face in the opposite direction to their predecessor.

As such, Queen Elizabeth faces right and so Charles should be pictured facing left. During Elizabeth’s long reign, five different portraits of her were used on coins.

Postage stamps will likewise be updated to feature the portrait of the new king.


The Royal Cypher – the monogram used by the monarch which, currently features the queen’s “EIIR” stamp below an image of the St Edward’s Crown – will change.

The cypher is replicated across Britain and appears on everything from red mail pillar boxes to police uniforms. In accordance with tradition, both the cypher and the royal coat of arms will change with a new king.

However, cyphers on pillar boxes will only appear on new boxes and so the queen’s cypher will stay on thousands across the country, just as many remain from previous monarchs on those that were installed before her reign.

Also a quirk of British history, not all pillar boxes erected in her reign have the “EIIR” cypher, because Elizabeth II’s ancestor Elizabeth I was not queen of Scotland and the English and Scottish crowns were not united until after her death in 1603.

As a result, some Scots did not accept the late queen as being Elizabeth II. Early in her reign some boxes in Scotland were vandalised and one was even blown up, meaning most Scottish boxes have their own cypher.


Senior lawyers will become King’s Counsel rather than Queen’s Counsel (QC) and other legal titles that use Queen will change to King.

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