Lancashire pays its respects to Her Majesty the Queen
It is with the deepest sadness and respect that Lancashire's leaders remember Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, our Queen and The Duke of Lancaster today.
The High Sheriff of Lancashire, Chairman of Lancashire County Council and County Council Leader have each paid tribute to Her Majesty, following the announcement of her death by Buckingham Palace.
Martin Ainscough DL, High Sheriff of Lancashire, said: "This is a time of great national sorrow and reflection. It is the close of the second Elizabethan era.
"Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth was one of the most respected of dignitaries in the world.
"She will be recognised in history as a great leader and Monarch of the British Isles and the Commonwealth. We were fortunate that in Lancashire we could also call her our Duke. Her Majesty has had a very special place in the hearts and lives of so many people here. Her passing will be even more deeply mourned locally because of her long devotion to, and interest in, the North West of England.
"As High Sheriff of Lancashire, I was appointed by Her Majesty through her role as the Duke of Lancaster, and it's been a great honour to serve her.
"We now look forward to welcoming the new King and there will shortly be a proclamation in Lancashire to mark the beginning of his reign."
County Councillor Peter Britcliffe, Chairman of Lancashire County Council, said: "On behalf of the county council and the residents of Lancashire, I would like to express my deepest sadness following the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
"As the Duke of Lancaster, Her Majesty had very close links with our county, not least through the Lancashire-based regiments of the armed forces.
"Her Majesty was well known to have had a great affection for Lancashire, particularly the Forest of Bowland, and she visited our county on many occasions, most latterly to commemorate the 750th anniversary of the Duchy of Lancaster, when she visited Lancaster and Myerscough in 2015.
"She visited Burnley and Accrington in 2012 to commemorate her Diamond Jubilee as the reigning Monarch.
"People always turned up in their thousands to welcome The Queen, reflecting the enormous respect and affection that people held for her across Lancashire.
"Her Majesty will be very deeply missed by so many people who looked up to her, and continue to look up to her, as an exceptional Monarch and a glorious example to us all."
County Councillor Phillippa Williamson, leader of Lancashire County Council, said: "We share the country's deep sadness at the passing of Queen Elizabeth II. As reigning monarch she was also the Duke of Lancaster, as the new King will be, and had close links with our county, not least through the extensive holdings of the Duchy of Lancaster.
"For more than 60 years she was a constant in most of our lives, providing a shining example of a life lived in dignified duty and public service.
"She will be much missed, but as we look back on her reign with deep respect and affection we look forward with hope and optimism to the reign of the new King."
For more information about Lancashire's tributes to Her Majesty The Queen, the local proclamation of the new King, to sign an electronic book of condolence or to find out more about the role of the Duke of Lancaster, visit: https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/queen/