The Queen could be forced to change royal family tradition for the first time in 33 years

This is unheard of!

Queen looks reflective
(Image credit: Getty)

Her Majesty the Queen could spend Christmas away from Sandringham for the first time in 33 years, thanks to the ongoing effects of the covid-19 pandemic.

The Queen and the Duchess of Cambridge

(Image credit: Getty)

The Queen and Prince Philip are not expected to return to Sandringham for Christmas this year as the global pandemic continues to wreak havoc on festive plans up and down the country.

Her Majesty the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh recently returned to Windsor Castle following their summer stint at Sandringham to form a “HMS bubble” for the month-long lockdown.

And, according to an insider at Sandringham, the couple are not expected to return for Christmas as usual. 

They would normally be joined by up to 30 members of the extended family - including the Duke of Cambridge and the Prince of Wales. 

The source told The Sun, “We have been told not to expect them back for Christmas.”

Queen giving her Christmas Day speech

(Image credit: Getty)

It has been tradition for Christmas to be celebrated at Sandringham ever since 1988 - when Windsor Castle, where the royals used to celebrate, was being rewired. 

And it’s a tradition the Queen has stuck to ever since. 

Revealing the reasons behind her decision to move Christmas to Sandringham, the Queen’s former press secretary, Dickie Arbiter, told Hello, “Traditionally the family has always gone to Sandringham at Christmas. It’s so close to London where she does occasions almost right up to Christmas.

“She wants to be at Sandringham for the beginning of February, which is the anniversary of the death of her father. So Sandringham has always been the traditional place to go for Christmas until New Year.”

“Sandringham is always winter and Balmoral is always summer.”

While it’s thought the Queen’s Christmas could be scuppered further with the current lockdown restrictions stopping houses from mixing indoors, a Buckingham Palace spokesperson has said no decisions have been made.

“No final decision has been taken on Christmas.”

Georgia Farquharson

Georgia writes across Woman & Home and Good to Know and specialises in all things royal. Previously labelled the "Queen of the royals," Georgia knows the whose who and what's what when it comes to the monarchy. When she's not eagerly following the royal family, Georgia enjoys shopping and self-care. She lives with this motto in mind; "if your dreams don't scare you, they aren't big enough."