Government Communications Service
Government Communication response during the period of National Mourning of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
Blog posted by: Simon Baugh, Chief Executive of Government Communication Service (GCS), 20 September 2022.
It has been an extraordinary 12 days. I am so proud of the communications teams across GCS and so many other public bodies who have worked so hard since Her Late Majesty The Queen passed away.
Our objectives were to support a fitting commemoration of the life and legacy of the Queen, celebrate the accession of the new King, bring our country together, and enhance the reputation of the UK overseas. Hand on heart, on each I feel we succeeded and comms played its part.
It has been an astonishing collaboration, bringing together communications teams from hundreds of partners across every part of the UK.
I want to say a special thanks to those who had planned this moment so meticulously over many months – especially Carl Newns, Carol McCall, and Minal Vachhetta, from Cabinet Office – and to officials from the wider Bridges Secretariat who led the overall operation.
Thank you to the communications teams at The Royal Household for their patience and professionalism in what, for them, was both a private moment of grief and yet a moment of huge international significance. And thank you to those GCS members who volunteered to support the Palace during the mourning period.
Thank you to GCS members in every Government Department, and especially those in The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) , who led the communications for Lying in State and other ceremonial moments, and The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) who led our international media efforts and the arrangements for visiting dignitaries. The Department for Transport (DfT), The Ministry of Defence (MoD), the Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland offices all had major roles too.
Every nation across the UK was involved. The Scottish Government’s communications team did a fantastic job over the first five days, and the Northern Ireland Executive and Welsh Government communications teams both managed Royal Proclamations, services of remembrance and early visits from the King.
Thank you to the communications teams at our operational partners too, especially those at the Metropolitan Police, Transport for London (TfL), Westminster City Council and the Greater London Authority (GLA) who did an incredible job of getting clear practical information to the public.
At the centre, we coordinated these efforts, provided insight so that we could spot issues and adapt, and led an enormous media and stewarding operation. Thank you to Shaun Jepson, Andy Pike and Jen Wood who led the News and Communications Centre and all of the volunteers from across GCS who supported this effort. The team worked on media enquiries, accreditation, monitoring, coordination, the provision of public information and arranging the National Moment of Reflection – a special mention to Amy Taylor for all her hard work on this. And a huge thank you to my fellow Gold Communications Leads – Lisa Hunter, Alex Aiken and Gem Walsh.
The dedication and professionalism of everyone involved allowed plans to be executed almost flawlessly.
I am very grateful. And I am very proud of you all.
The Cypher of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
- Image credit:
- Cabinet Office (1)
Latest News from
Government Communications Service
The wit and wisdom of Sir Christopher Meyer (1944-2022)01/09/2022 11:10:00
Blog posted by: Alexander McKenna, Author of 100 Years of Government Communication, 31 August 2022.
GCS Internship induction 202215/08/2022 10:25:00
On Friday 22 July, we introduced our new cohort of 67 GCS interns across 31 departments to government communications, with an action packed face-to-face event.
Listening is the best trait that communicators can have01/08/2022 09:10:00
Blog posted by: Stephanie Hill, Acting Head of GCS Curriculum, Cabinet Office, 29 July 2022.
Five ways to improve the management of your emails15/07/2022 15:43:00
Blog posted by: Stephanie Hill, Acting Head of GCS Curriculum, Cabinet Office, 13 July 2022.
8 vital skills to empower communicators, now and in the future05/07/2022 09:10:00
Blog posted by: Jo Pennington, 04 July 2022.
Designing for accessibility as part of comms planning24/06/2022 14:10:00
Blog posted by: Stephanie Hill, Head of GCS Curriculum, 23 May 2022.
GCS focuses on innovation with Project Spark!16/05/2022 13:38:00
The GCS Innovation Lab is launching Spark!, a Dragon’s Den-style opportunity for GCS members from across ALBs and central government departments to share their innovative ideas, sell them to a senior panel of ‘dragons’ and see them implemented across government.
GCS launches its 3-year Strategy16/05/2022 09:10:00
On Wednesday, GCS Chief Executive, Simon Baugh along with the GCS Executive Director Team: Lisa Hunter, Conrad Bird and Gem Welsh launched the GCS Strategy, broadcasted live from No.9 Downing Street to over 1,500 communicators.