King Charles III is hosting his first traditional family Christmas as monarch on Sunday at the Sandringham royal estate in Norfolk for the first time.
It also marks the first time since before the pandemic in 2019 that Britain’s royal family spent Christmas at eastern England estate and the royal standard flag is once again flying above the house marking a return of the long-standing festive tradition. Sunday also marks the first Christmas since the death of Queen Elizabeth II in September, aged 96.
The family began the day with a morning service at St. Mary Magdalene Church, greeting royal fans before sitting down to a family dinner with turkey and the usual festive trimmings.
The King and Queen Consort Camilla is joined by the Prince and Princess of Wales, William and Kate, and their children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis. On Saturday, the two older children George and Charlotte joined William and Kate at Westminster Abbey in London for a carol service in honour of the late Queen.
In his first-ever traditional Christmas Day message as the British monarch, the King pays tribute to his late mother Queen Elizabeth II’s legacy.
In an image released by Buckingham Palace earlier this week, the 74-year-old is seen next to a Christmas tree at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle recording the message earlier this month to be broadcast on Sunday evening.
The British monarch’s Christmas broadcast is a long-standing tradition and is aimed at people across the UK and the Commonwealth.
It will be the first televised annual royal Christmas Day broadcast not to be presented by the late Queen, who appeared in the first televised message in 1957.
St. George’s Chapel marks a change of scene from the messages recorded by the Queen, who would traditionally be seated and surrounded by photos of her family in a palace room.
It is in the George VI Memorial Chapel of the royal chapel that Queen Elizabeth II was laid to rest along with her husband Prince Philip following a state funeral in September.
In other personal touches of the environmentally minded new King, Buckingham Palace said the tree is plastic-free with recyclable decorations and arrangements of holly and ivy in the background.
Following the recording of his festive address, the Christmas tree was re-used by St. George’s Chapel in the Dean’s Cloister for visitors to enjoy, the palace said.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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