Margaret Thatcher's ceremonial funeral to be held at St Paul's Cathedral on Wednesday

A tribute to Baroness Thatcher Credit: PA

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh are to attend the funeral of Baroness Thatcher next Wednesday, it has been announced.

The ceremony - coordinated under the code name 'Operation True Blue' - is expected to be attended by dignitaries from around the world, will be held at St Paul's cathedral.

The cost of the funeral is estimated at around £10 million, which will be partly covered by the former Prime Minister's estate.

A Downing Street spokesman said the date had been agreed at a "co-ordination meeting" with the Thatcher family and Buckingham Palace this morning.

A statement from the Palace said: "The Queen, accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, will attend the funeral service of Baroness Thatcher at St Paul's Cathedral next Wednesday."

It will be the first time the Queen has attended the funeral service of a former prime minister since Sir Winston Churchill's state ceremony in 1965.

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh lead mourners at Sir Winston Churchill's funeral in 1965 Credit: PA

Lady Thatcher's will be a ceremonial funeral with full military honours which will be followed by a private cremation.

"All the arrangements being put in place are in line with wishes of Lady Thatcher's family", a Downing Street statement said.

In line with her wishes, the former prime minister will not lie in state.

Her coffin will travel on a gun carriage as was present at the funerals of Lady Diana and the Queen Mother.

The coffin of Diana, Princess of Wales, lies on a gun carriage at her funeral in 1997. Credit: PA

It will not be a state funeral because, with the exception of Winston Churchill, those are reserved for reigning Kings and Queens.

A gun carriage carries the coffin of the Queen Mother through Horseguards Parade in 2002. Credit: PA/PA Archive/Press Association Images

The Funeral

A statement from Downing Street confirmed the following details about Baroness Thatcher's funeral:

  • The service will be televised and members of the public can watch the coffin procession from the Palace of Westminster to St Paul’s Cathedral.

  • Lady Thatcher’s wish was for the armed forces to be able to participate.

  • On the day before the funeral, the coffin will be moved to Chapel of St Mary Undercroft in the Palace of Westminster. There will be a short service following its arrival. The coffin will rest in the Chapel overnight.

  • On the day itself, the streets will be cleared of traffic and the coffin will travel by hearse from the Chapel of St Mary Undercroft in the Palace of Westminster to the Church of St Clement Danes, the RAF Chapel, on the Strand.

Sir Winston Churchill's funeral cortege on London's The Strand in 1965 Credit: PA/PA Archive/Press Association Images
  • At the Church the coffin will be transferred to a gun carriage drawn by the King’s Troop Royal Artillery.

  • The coffin will then be borne in Procession from St Clement Danes to St Paul’s Cathedral. The route will be lined by tri-service military personnel.

  • The coffin will be met at St Paul’s Cathedral by a guard of honour. Service personnel and Pensioners of the Royal Hospital Chelsea will line the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral.

Baroness Thatcher pictured with Pensioners of the Royal Hospital Chelsea Credit: Ian Nicholson/PA Wire
  • The coffin will be borne into and out of the Cathedral by a tri-service bearer party.

  • Flags will be flown at half mast on the day of the funeral.

The route of Baroness Thatcher's funeral procession from the Palace of Westminster to St Paul's Cathedral. Credit: Google Maps


The guest list for St Paul’s will include family and friends of Lady Thatcher, those who worked with her over the years, including members of her Cabinets when she was Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister will attend and the Cabinet and Shadow Cabinet will be invited.

There will also be representatives from a range of groups she was associated with