Former PM broke down into 'floods of tears' and went into 'state of shock' after Queen's death

Former PM broke down into 'floods of tears' and went into 'state of shock' after Queen's death

Watch: Liz Truss reveals her reaction to death of Queen Elizabeth in new memoir

GB News
Hannah Ross

By Hannah Ross

Published: 13/04/2024

- 12:12

Liz Truss met with the late Queen only two days before her death in September 2022

  • The former Prime Minister recalled asking herself “why me, why now?” after hearing the Queen died
  • Liz Truss is releasing a new memoir, Ten Years to Save the West, next week
  • Have your say: Are you looking forward to reading Liz Truss’s memoir? Just click the comment button above now

A former Prime Minister broke down into “floods of tears” and went into a “state of shock” after the late Queen Elizabeth II’s death.

The news of the Queen’s death came on Liz Truss’s second full day as PM, leaving her asking: “Why me, why now?”

Queen Elizabeth II died on September 8, 2022, at Balmoral aged 96 after reigning for 70 years.

Truss held her second and final audience with Elizabeth two days before her death and said that there “simply wasn’t any sense that the end would come as quickly as it did.”

Queen Elizabeth II

The late Queen died at the age of 96 at Balmoral


The former Tory leader wrote in an extract from her memoir, Ten Years to Save the West, published on the Daily Mail, that the Queen advised her to “pace yourself.”

Truss said that “maybe I should have listened” after spending only 49 days in office making her the shortest-serving prime minister in British history.

Truss stood down as prime minister in October 2022 after her mini-budget left the UK in economic turmoil.

Recalling the meeting where the Queen met and appointed Truss, she said that the monarch was “standing up as she greeted me in her drawing room.”

Queen Elizabeth and Liz Truss

Liz Truss recalled her final meeting with the Queen two days before her death


She continued: “I was told she'd made a special effort to do so but she gave no hint of discomfort throughout our discussion.

“This was only my second one-on-one audience with her. On the previous occasion, after I'd been removed from a different job in the government, she'd remarked that being a woman in politics was tough.

“For about 20 minutes, we discussed politics - and it was clear she was completely attuned to everything that was happening, as well as being typically sharp and witty. There simply wasn't any sense that the end would come as quickly as it did.”

Truss recalled how the “machine kicked into action” after word reached Downing Street that the Queen would not be able to join the swearing-in of new ministers via a video link.

Liz Truss

Liz Truss making a statement outside 10 Downing Street following the death of Queen Elizabeth II


She explained: “My black mourning dress was fetched from my house in Greenwich, south London.

“Frantic phone calls took place with Buckingham Palace. I started to think about what on earth I was going to say if the unthinkable happened.

“On Thursday, we received the solemn news that the Queen had died peacefully at Balmoral. To be told this on only my second full day as prime minister felt utterly unreal. In a state of shock, I found myself thinking: 'Why me, why now?’”

Truss’s book, which contains descriptions of her time as an MP, foreign secretary and PM, will be published in the US and UK next week.

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