The Queen wants her children and grandchildren to ‘enjoy Christmas with their other loved-ones’ and ‘not feel torn’ as she prepares for a ‘quiet’ festive season at Windsor, a royal expert has claimed.
The Queen 94, and Prince Philip, 99, traditionally spend the festive season with close family at Sandringham, in Norfolk. But it was announced earlier this week that this year they will forgo the festivities and remain at Windsor Castle, where they have been isolating with a ‘bubble’ of staff since October.
It is understood the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh will not take advantage of the relaxed Covid restrictions to form a Christmas bubble with other households.
Vanity Fair‘s Katie Nicholl reported: ‘The Queen has said that this is the year for her family to enjoy Christmases with other family members and not feel torn, as they often do, when a royal Christmas takes priority.’
The Queen, 94, ‘has said this is the year her family enjoy Christmas with other family members and not feel torn’, according to Vanity Fair’s Katie Nicholl
It means the couple face spending Christmas Day without any of their four children for the first time since 1949, when the then Princess Elizabeth left a one-year-old Charles in the UK so she could be with Prince Philip in Malta.
Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall will spend Christmas at Highgrove, in Gloucestershire, although they expect to see the Queen and Prince Philip at Windsor at some point over the festive season.
They will also see Camilla’s children Tom Parker Bowles and Laura Lopes at some point.
Meanwhile Prince William and Kate Middleton are most likely to spend Christmas at Anmer Hall, Norfolk or with the Duchess’ parents, Carole and Michael Middleton,in Berkshire.
Prince William, 38, and Kate Middleton, 38, may spend Christmas with her family this year for the first time since 2012 after the royal’s traditional celebration was cancelled (pictured, Prince William, Kate, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis)
It would be the first time the couple had spent Christmas with the Middletons since 2012.
Last year the Cambridges joined the Queen at Sandringham for Christmas and took part in the walkabout to meet royal fans – though Prince Louis was absent.
Meanwhile Prince Edward, the Countess of Wessex and their children live at Bagshot Park, Surrey, while Princess Anne and her family live at Gatcombe Park, in Gloucestershire.
Prince Andrew is the only one of the Queen’s four children who lives in Windsor and is most likely to spend the holidays with Fergie and their two children, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice, and their husbands.
For the last 33 years, the Queen 94, has spent the festive season at Sandringham, where she hosts close family members and enjoys traditions such as the Boxing Day shoot. Pictured, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh with Prince Charles, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on Christmas Day in 2017
But without the commitment of a royal Christmas, Princess Eugenie and Jack may choose to celebrate with Jack’s side of the family after they faced a difficult few months.
Earlier this year, his father George battled Covid-19 and was put on a ventilator for five weeks.
In Tier 2 regions, like Windsor, up to six people from different households are able to mix outdoors. This means the Queen and Prince Philip could meet with family members for horse riding or walks in the grounds of Windsor Castle.
The couple are well accustomed to spending Christmas at Windsor Castle, having spent holidays at the castle before moving the celebration to Sandringham in 1988. t the Middleton family home in Berkshire.
The Queen won’t attend a church service on Christmas Day in order to prevent crowds gathering but is expected to worship privately in Windsor Castle’s private chapel.