Christmas is an expensive time for most people, including even the Queen it seems as she spends a staggering ‘£30,000 on 620 gifts for family and staff’, a former aide claims.
Her Majesty, 93, also sends 750 Christmas cards – which will usually feature a family photo – to relatives, friends, members of the Royal Household, and various British Commonwealth delegates.
Speaking to Fabulous Digital, the source explained that up to two weeks before December 25, staff are told to go to one of the state rooms at Buckingham Palace to receive their presents from the Queen.
The Queen, 93, after she recorded her annual Christmas Day message in 2018, at Buckingham Palace in London
Her Majesty sends 750 Christmas cards – which will usually feature a family photo – to relatives, friends, Members of the Royal Household, and various British Commonwealth delegates. Pictured: The Queen’s 1975 card
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.
‘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.’
If staff are unable to leave their duties on the specified days then the Household sends the presents to them along with a card from the monarch – which is signed by the Queen and Prince Philip.
A whopping 1,500 Christmas puddings, paid for through the Privy purse, are given to palace workers, staff in the Court Post Office and Palace police, according to the royal’s website.
The Prince of Wales, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and the Duchess and Duke of Sussex arriving to attend the Christmas Day morning church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk, in 2018
The Queen explores the collection as she visits the new headquarters of the Royal Philatelic society on November 26, 2019 in London
The aide claimed that the Queen used to enjoy a personal shopping session at Buckingham Palace before Christmas, but now the gifts are all chosen online by the monarch’s private secretary’s office.
Chosen stores – such as Harrods and Fortnum & Mason – would send ‘van loads of stuff to her look at’, which would be displayed on tables across two rooms at the 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 former aide claimed.
Meanwhile, the Duke of Edinburgh sends a further 200 cards at Christmas to different regiments and organisations close to him.
Royal Collection Trust members of staff put the finishing touches to a 15ft Christmas tree in the Crimson Drawing Room at Windsor Castle
Buckingham Palace was contacted for comment by MailOnline and noted that Christmas gift details can be found on the Royal Household website.
They wouldn’t give any further guidance.
The revelations come after Sandringham: The Queen at Christmas, which aired this week on Channel 5, claimed that the royal family compete to buy one another the tackiest, silliest gifts over the festive period.
At 6pm precisely on Christmas Eve, the royals are called into Sandringham’s drawing room, where they have a ‘holy evening’ of gift giving and view the gifts as the ‘jokier the better’, the documentary revealed.
Over the years, the Queen has received a ‘Big Mouth Billie Bass’ the comical singing fish that hangs on walls, as well as a washing up apron as gifts from her family.