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Danish abdication day timeline: What will happen for Queen Margrethe and Crown Prince Frederik

Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary will become King and Queen of Denmark

Frederik walking arm in arm with Queen Margrethe
Danielle Stacey
Online Royal CorrespondentLondon
Updated: 9 January 2024
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Queen Margrethe will officially abdicate on Sunday 14 January, meaning that her son, Crown Prince Frederik, will become King of Denmark on the very same day.

There will be no formal coronation service for the new monarch. The last coronation took place in 1840 for King Christian VIII.

Instead, Frederik's accession will be announced from Christiansborg Palace in Copenhagen on the day.

The Danish royal palace has now confirmed what will happen on the historic day.

Here's a timeline of everything that will happen on 14 January.

At 1.35pm local time, Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary will travel by car with Prince Christian from Frederik VIII's Palace at Amalienborg to Christiansborg Palace. Two minutes later, Queen Margrethe will depart in the Golden Wedding Anniversary Coach from Christian IX's Palace at Amalienborg to Christiansborg Palace, escorted by the Guard Hussar Regiment’s Mounted Squadron. 

At 2pm local time, Queen Margrethe II will formally abdicate at the Council of State. It will be the first time such an event has occurred in nearly 900 years. She will then return to Christian IX's Palace, Amalienborg. 

Queen Margrethe in a golden carriage© Getty
Queen Margrethe hosted her final New Year's reception on 4 January

Meanwhile, at 2.30pm local time, Frederik and Mary will host a reception for specially invited guests at Christiansborg Palace. 

At 3pm local time, Crown Prince Frederik will be proclaimed His Majesty King Frederik X from the balcony of Christiansborg Palace. His wife, Mary, will become Her Majesty Queen Mary, while the couple's eldest son, Prince Christian, will assume the title of Crown Prince of Denmark.

Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary arrive to the New Year's cure © Getty
Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary will become King and Queen of Denmark

After the proclamation, a cannon salute will be fired from the Sixtus Battery at Holmen, Copenhagen. The royal standard will then be lowered at Christian IX's Palace and reraised at Frederik VIII's Palace, Amalienborg. 

At 3.30pm local time, King Frederik and Queen Mary will use the Golden Wedding Anniversary Coach for their return to Frederik VIII's Palace at Amalienborg. 

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Then at 5pm local time, there will be the transfer of the royal flags from Christian IX's Palace to Frederik VIII's Palace at Amalienborg, where Frederik and Mary reside.

The Danish royal palace has confirmed that Margrethe will still be known as Her Majesty Queen Margrethe.

The queen announced her shock abdication during her New Year's address.

Queen Margrethe of Denmark© Getty
Queen Margrethe pictured during her New Year's speech

Margrethe said: "In February this year I underwent extensive back surgery. It went well, thanks to the skilled healthcare staff who took care of me. Of course, the operation also gave rise to thinking about the future - whether the time had come to leave the responsibility to the next generation. 

"I have decided that now is the right time. On 14 January 2024 – 52 years after I succeeded my beloved father – I will step down as Queen of Denmark. I leave the throne to my son Crown Prince Frederik."

Queen Margrethe has hosted her last New Year's receptions at Christiansborg palace over the last two days, where she delivered a moving speech. Watch below…

WATCH: Queen Margrethe gives moving speech at final Diplomatic Corps reception

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