Last December 25, the Windsors once again fulfilled their secular Christmas tradition by gathering at the Sandringham residence, in the county of Norfolk.
There they attended mass at the church of St. Mary Magdalene, and then returned to Sandringham House for lunch and to listen to the Christmas message from King Charles III.
British royal family at Sandringham
The big stars of the day were, once again, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis, who captivated those present with their Christmas looks.
They were accompanied by their parents, Princes William and Catherine, and their maternal grandparents, King Charles III and Queen Camilla, who led the parade to the church for the second year.
Other attendees included Princess Anne and her family, the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh with their children, and Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice of York with their husbands.
Also in attendance were Zara and Mike Tindall who were holding hands with their daughter Lena Tindall.
Also present was Prince Andrew, whom his brother invited last year after being removed from the family over the Epstein affair.
The big surprise was given by Sarah Ferguson, former sister-in-law of the king, whose last appearance had been 30 years ago. After separating from Andrew in 1992, Fergie returned in 2023, especially complicated by overcoming breast cancer.
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After Mass, the family returned to Sandringham House for the traditional Christmas lunch and to hear Charles III’s televised message.
Built in 1862 for Edward VII on an 8,000-acre site, the castle houses numerous rooms spread over three floors, plus an attic, basement, and multiple drawing rooms.
Sandringham has historically been the scene of joy and sorrow for royalty. George V and George VI, grandfather and father of Elizabeth II, died there.
It was also the site of the 2020 “Sandringham Summit” between Elizabeth II, Charles, William, and Harry to negotiate the latter’s departure from the Royal Household.
In 2018, Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle were the big stars of the mass at St. Mary Magdalene Chapel.
After several weeks of speculation and rumors, the Duchesses of Sussex and Cambridge posed together and smiled at the doors of Sandringham Chapel.
Eventually, it became clear that this was nothing more than an attempt to stage a relationship that was nothing more than a facade.
The mood has changed. The British royal family has boasted this year of good family relations by including the presence of Sarah Ferguson and the stricken Duke of York.