The Queen was once forced to dine in the dark after a royal staff blunder

The Queen was once forced to dine in the dark after royal staff made a mistake that left the Queen 'virtually sitting in the dark'

The Queen was once forced to dine in the dark after royal staff made a mistake that left the Queen 'virtually sitting in the dark'
(Image credit: Mark Cuthbert/UK Press/Getty Images)

The Queen was once forced to dine in the dark when some of the palace staff members made a serious mistake that disrupted her dinner plans.


Former Royal footman Steven Kaye has revealed what it was like working with royalty in an exclusive interview with Slingo (opens in new tab). The footman revealed that sometimes mistakes happen, and spoke specifically about one occasion when plans went amiss.

"These sorts of things do happen quite a lot, with any job where there has to be perfection, there’s always going to be a lot of mistakes," said Steven.

The footman recalled an incident that ended with the Queen eating her dinner in the dark. "There was one occasion where the under-butler had forgotten to put candles out on the dining table," said Steven. "As it so happened, for some bizarre reason in the dining room at Windsor the lights were flickering on and off, so the Queen ordered that the lights be turned off and we’d just have candlelight - well, there were no candles."

"We were then running down to one of the pantries to find some candles and bring them up while the Queen was virtually sitting in the dark," revealed the former royal worker.

Steven revealed that although the Queen likes things to be organized and shipshape, she understands that mistakes do happen. "But, as long as you correct those mistakes quickly, I don’t think the Queen really minds. She doesn’t like sloppiness, so given that it’s an accident and not deliberate, she’s usually OK," said the former royal employee.

Queen eating

(Image credit: Tim Graham / Contributor / Getty Images)

Although this meal was a bit of a fiasco for Her Majesty, there are many other unique ways that the royal staff ensure that the Queen's mealtimes run perfectly. The weird way the Queen finishes her meals was revealed by a royal member of staff who explained that the Queen's butler has a special button he presses when the monarch has finished a course. 

This means that there is no delay between the Queen's courses and the kitchen knows when to send up the next course to the dining room in Buckingham Palace, or whichever one of her many homes the Queen is staying in.

Laura is a news writer for woman&home who primarily covers entertainment and celebrity news. Laura dabbles in lifestyle, royal, beauty, and fashion news, and loves to cover anything and everything to do with television and film. She is also passionate about feminism and equality and loves writing about gender issues and feminist literature.


Laura loves drinking and eating and can often be found trying to get reservations at London's trendiest restaurants. When she's not wining and dining, Laura can also be found travelling, baking, and hiking with her dog.