Royal Christmas: The Queen’s shocking spending habits revealed after buying 620 Xmas gifts


THE QUEEN has one of the biggest Christmas gift lists in the UK which includes buying 620 gifts for her staff and family, it has been revealed.

Her Majesty makes sure that all her staff receive presents with a total bill working out to a whopping £30,000, according to a former palace aide. Speaking to Fabulous Digital, the aide said the Deputy Master of the House instructs the staff, to go to one of the state rooms at Buckingham Palace. They said: “Here they line up to receive a wrapped gift from the Queen, and she says a few words to each of them – usually something like ‘Thank you so much for all your help during the year, followed by Happy Christmas.’

“If the staff are not able to be there on the specified days, the Household makes sure they are sent to them, along with a card from HM.

“The presents are usually a book token, or a small piece of china from the palace gift shop, and most years she gives them a small Christmas pudding in a box as well.”

In the room the royal spread is supposed to include 1500 Christmas puddings paid for through the Privy purse which are handed to palace staff, workers in the Court Post Office and Palace police.

The aide added: “An equerry will be standing beside her with a list, from which he will quietly whisper the name of each recipient as they step forward, just as they would at a palace investiture ceremony.”

On top of the presents the Queen is also said to send 750 Christmas cards, with the lucky names on the list including the likes of notable people in the UK and prominent world leaders.

The aide said that the Queen used to have a personal shopping session from Harrods in her home before Christmas.

They said: “The gifts are all chosen online by two women in HM’s private secretary’s office now, but until fairly recently the Queen used to be able to go on a shopping spree of her own, when chosen stores – principally Harrods and Fortnums – would send van loads of stuff for her to look at.

“All the items were put on display on tables in two big room at Buckingham Palace.

“It was like her very own royal shopping mall. But it’s not done now, it’s one of those things that she doesn’t really need to expend her energy on as she gets older.”

The Queen makes an effort to acknowledge the work done during the year by members of the staff at her households, a royal expert said. The monarch sends thank you cards at Christmas to those working in her palaces – and she personally signs them.

The Queen also makes sure their cards are the first to be sent, even before the ones signed for her friends.

Prince Philip joins the Queen in her end-of-year duty, also signing every single card, according to Dickie Arbiter, the Queen’s former press officer and royal commentator.

Appearing on Channel 5’s documentary ’Sandringham: The Queen at Christmas’, the expert said: “The Queen signs every Christmas card she sends, as does Prince Philip.

“There’s no stencilling or faxing or anything like that, and the card count runs into hundreds.

“All the staff get a card, then friends get a card.

“There are people you’ve got send cards to and people you want to send cards to, but every card is signed by both of them.”

The Queen and Prince Philip also work together on the Christmas decorations.

The monarch is the one who approves how all her residences will be decorated – but the Duke of Edinburgh is the only one allowed to place the gold star on top of the Christmas tree.

Royal expert Claudia Joseph told Channel 5: “Prince Philip will always put the gold star on the top of the tree, and probably will continue to do so for the rest of his life.

“He’s quite a stalwart and won’t let other people take control.

“When any young children come they put their own decorations on.”


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