Queen and members of the Royal Family gather in Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 11:25 20 December 2017 | UPDATED: 17:00 20 December 2017

The Queen often travels by train to King's Lynn, when on her way to Sandringham for Christmas. Picture: Matthew Usher.

The Queen often travels by train to King's Lynn, when on her way to Sandringham for Christmas. Picture: Matthew Usher.

© Archant Norfolk 2014

As members of her family arrive in perfectly choreographed order, the Queen can look forward to a bumper gathering at Sandringham.

Sandringham House, where the Royal Family gathers for Christmas. Picture: Ian BurtSandringham House, where the Royal Family gathers for Christmas. Picture: Ian Burt

While the world’s eyes may well be on the newly-engaged Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, the monarch will have more than 20 of her children, grand children and great-grand children joining her for Christmas.

She will have travelled to Norfolk a few days before the rest of her clan arrive to oversee preparations including choosing a tree from her own sawmill.

Along with the minutiae of decorations, menus and place settings, there may also be time to check on the progress of horses at the nearby Royal Stud.

Younger members of the family put the finishing touches to the tree when the family gather at 4pm on Christmas Eve.

In a nod to their German origins, this is when presents are exchanged. Family members out do each other to see who can buy the cheapest, tackiest gift.

Prince Harry, who once reportedly received a grow your own girlfriend kit, is said to have given the Queen a bath cap bearing the motto “ain’t life a b*tch”.

Once the wrapping paper is off, family members enjoy drinks before changing for dinner. That means a black tie for the men and gowns and jewels for the women, before a candlelit three-courses followed by drinks.

Christmas Day starts with a full english, before the traditional stroll to church. Well wishers pack the field beside the tiny church.

Numbers are likely to be swollen by those hoping to catch a glimpse of newly-engaged Harry and Meghan.

After church, the family returns to the house for Christmas lunch of turkey with all the trimmings, including vegetables grown on Sandringham’s organic farms.

Some depart during the afternoon to spend Christmas elsewhere. Others join the traditional Boxing Day pheasant shoot, led by the Duke of Edinburgh.

The Queen and Prince Philip usually spend January at Sandringham. The Queen stays on until after February 6 - the day in which she acceded to the throne in 1953, after her father King George VI died in his sleep at Sandringham.

Related articles

Other News

28 minutes ago

Emergency services tackled a gas leak in Caister on Tuesday afternoon which is believed to have been caused by criminal damage to a property.

Tributes have poured in to a stalwart of the Great Yarmouth borough after he died following a short term illness.

Sky-high fares, an unreliable service, and cheaper alternative transport options are all being blamed for a significant drop in rail passengers in Great Yarmouth over the last five years.

A Norfolk school has been praised by Ofsted for their development of “disengaged” pupils following its transformation from being an inadequate school.

Most Read

Mon, 18:00

School trips usually involve taking children to see one of Shakespeare’s great plays or visiting a historic museum.

Read more

Plans for a former pub to be turned into a luxury tobacconist have been put under fire by a nearby health centre, with bosses arguing it would “give out entirely the wrong message”.

Read more
Mon, 11:42

Would you like to play a major part in restoring one of Great Yarmouth’s most historic tourist attractions to its former glory?

Read more
Barry Coleman
Mon, 09:21

A joyrider was arrested after crashing into a traffic bollard - and was found to be more than three times the legal driving limit when police breathalysed him.

Read more
Great Yarmouth police
Yesterday, 14:29

The inquest into the death of a three-year-old girl who died after being thrown from an inflatable trampoline on Gorleston beach has been adjourned because a police report into the incident is not ready.

Read more

Local Weather

Sunshine and Showers

Sunshine and Showers

max temp: 9°C

min temp: 4°C

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the Great
Yarmouth Mercury

e-edition today


Newsletter Sign Up

Great Yarmouth Mercury weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy