Queen Elizabeth cancelled the pre-Christmas royal lunch because of Covid

Queen Elizabeth II attends a Service of Thanksgiving

This genuinely surprised me: Queen Elizabeth has cancelled the pre-Christmas luncheon she was set to host at Windsor Castle next week. The lunch is an annual event for the lesser royals, the royals who are not invited to Sandringham, and it’s a chance for the extended family to see each other before Christmas Day. There were concerns about hosting that many people as the UK and other parts of the world are facing yet another huge Covid surge, this time with the Omicron variant. Looks like the Queen didn’t want to risk it: she cancelled the lunch!

Queen Elizabeth’s traditional Christmas lunch has been called off! After last year’s festivities were canceled due to COVID restrictions, the Queen, 95, hoped to host her extended family for an annual pre-Christmas bash next week.

But the party has been canceled as a precautionary measure amid a surge in COVID rates in the U.K., so as not to jeopardize Christmas Day plans for those who were going to attend, a source confirms to PEOPLE.

The monarch is said to regret that the decision had to be made but felt it is the right thing to do under the circumstances. COVID rates are rising to record levels in the U.K. and government advisers have recommended curtailing pre-holiday gatherings. Buckingham Palace declined to comment.

While the luncheon typically takes place at Buckingham Palace, this year’s event was to have taken place at Windsor Castle, where the Queen has been staying amid the ongoing pandemic.

[From People]

Part of me believes that this is about the spike in Covid cases and another part of me wonders if… maybe the Queen wasn’t ready to be “seen” quite yet. She hasn’t been seen in public since October, and the only times she has been been seen at all in the past two months have been via carefully choreographed photos and videos. Perhaps the Queen simply wasn’t up for hosting the whole family for a variety of reasons. But yeah, the Covid thing makes sense too.

The Royal Family thank Key Workers at Windsor Castle

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Backgrid.

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55 Responses to “Queen Elizabeth cancelled the pre-Christmas royal lunch because of Covid”

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  1. Noki says:

    I honestly think from the immediate,extended family and even the staff are jumping for joy. These Christmas events and traditions sound insufferable even for the younger royals.I hope Charles starts less tension inducing and stuffy traditions.

    • Elizabeth Regina says:

      I know Carole Middarshian is jumping for joy. Now each royal grandchild will get to decorate their own Christmas tree.

      • Mac says:

        Since the kids aren’t invited to the luncheon why would Carole be jumping for joy?

      • Jan90067 says:

        The cancellation is only for the PRE-Christmas lunch. The one that Racist Princess Pushy wore the Blackamoor Brooch to (Meghan’s first Christmas with the family when they got engaged).

        As of now, CHRISTMAS *AT* SANDRINGHAM (for the *immediate* family) is still on.

      • BothSidesNow says:

        @ Jan90067, of course that festivity would never fall under the chance of cancellation!! TQ wants all of her family around her this holiday season and what she wants, she gets! Coronavirus or not!!

    • Amy Bee says:

      @Noki: If Charles doesn’t continue this and other Christmas “traditions” there will be hell to pay from the British press.

      • notasugarhere says:

        He might change them up in his own way. In spite of recent rumours (W&K leaks), it was always stated that Charles would move to Windsor as his main home once he’s king. I could see him changing this to attending a public service at St George’s Windsor with only certain royal family members present. Middleton/Matthews families not invited.

  2. Dee says:

    Maybe distribute the costs of hosting such a party to the poorly paid staff who would’ve worked it.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      What a wonderful idea @ Dee!! Though you know that the royal family only like to give out money to those that are approved members of the family and themselves. Unfortunately, the staff don’t count in either category.

      • Margaret says:

        Well none of the secondary royals attended Kate’s big holiday extravaganza. What happened to the together thingy?. I believe as snobbish as the rest of the royals are, they may have declined the invite. After all there is a lot of bad pr regarding that family.

  3. ML says:

    This is good, whatever the reason! In Holland, Amalia celebrated her birthday with way too many people and is getting flack for it: it pisses me off that the (Dutch) royals always seem to think they’re above Corona rules and just wind up saying sorry if they’re caught.

  4. Ace says:

    It’s very amusing how this comes just as the Fail was assuring us yesterday that the Queen wanted it to happen. It almost looks like the tabloids just make up stories!

    I don’t think there’s been a change in government guidelines (yet?) so I do think this has less to do with Covid and more to do with how the Queen is feeling these days.

  5. Over it says:

    I think this lunch was never going to happen. I feel she is just not doing well. This is a woman and family who didn’t care about mask or social distancing the first time around, so I find it hard to believe that they care now.

    • Charm says:

      Definitely a health issue. The men-in-grey are just using her name to pull the wool over the eyes of her gullible subjects. And covering themselves by using the pandemic. Theyre gonna do a version of this when it comes time to announce the cancellation of the Sandringham family gathering & walkabout.

  6. BayTampaBay says:

    I think it is all about public perception.

    With all the flack BloJo Johnson is getting for government Christmas parties last year and the possibility of another UK Covid Lockdown, I believe the cancellation was entirely due to Ms. Covid Omicron. Per The Independent and The Spectator from today, the government has come out asking for holiday socializing to be extremely limited.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      @ BayTampaBay, I love your title for the PM of Britain!! He shall now be regarded as BloJo as he is certainly worthy of such a name!!

      As for TQ, she probably thought it was best as there were probably those men in grey encouraging her to cancel, after all we are all still living with a pandemic and it wouldn’t look good for her to host a massive party.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        It did not look good to the Dutch for the DRF to host a small (not 50 people) formal 18th birthday part for Amalia, Princess of Orange as part of her coming-of-age ritual.

        QEII may be 95 but she can still read the tea leaves with no problem whatsoever; eyes like a ferret that woman has.

      • Nic919 says:

        Also there would have been a large group of elderly people at high risk mixing with young kids, who are not vaccinated.

    • notasugarhere says:

      He’s even using his newborn daughter for PR, in the face of bad PR he’s getting for refusing to enact mask mandates, stay at home orders, etc.

  7. Woke says:

    They must have known the possibity of it being cancelled so I wonder why they doubled down on it anyway they tend to do that a lot. It was the same situation with her appearance at remembrance sunday they kept saying she would be there only to cancel last minute.

  8. Nadine says:

    They’re going to ‘Weekend at Bernies’ her all the way to the Jubilee.

    • Nivz says:

      Spat my coffee out at this.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      Nadine, you are brilliant!!

    • ba says:

      thinking the same thing! not sure our dear queen is still with us …. now that’s a conspiracy i can get behind 😉

    • Lorelei says:

      @Nadine I’ve been thinking that too! And yes, it seems totally outrageous and implausible, but I would put NOTHING past this family

    • Liz Version 700 says:

      Nadine spot on! That is exactly what they will do

    • phlyfiremama says:

      Haha, I said the same thing yesterday on the first post! They are just gonna taxidermy her and keep rolling her out for “events” to save themselves. 🤣🤣🤣

    • anon says:

      I’ve seen various rumors of this and can I just say? No way. William would do it cause he doesn’t want the work, but Charles? He’d be pushing the old broad off the white cliffs of dover in her own Range Rover if he could be King. He’s afraid he’ll bite it before she does and he’ll never get the crown!

      • SomeChick says:

        so if Charles does bite it first, wouldn’t Andrew then be next in line?!

      • Antonym says:

        No, William is next after Charles. Even if Charles predeceases Elizabeth, William is still next. Andrew cannot leapfrog anyone in front of him in line. It’s Charles, then William, then William’s kids, then Harry, then Harry’s kids, then Andrew.

  9. Amy Bee says:

    I thought she was going to cancel because she wouldn’t be up to it. I still believe that’s the case but Omicron is also a good reason not going ahead with it, much to the disappointment of the press. Both the Sun and the DM were definite that the Queen was going to have this event, as they were desperate for those pictures of Royals driving in and out of Windsor Castle. The Royal Family will have to make up for the press’ loss of revenue but I wonder what they will do.? Last year they did that Magnificent Seven Photo shoot outside of Windsor Castle.

    • Becks1 says:

      AmyBee those are my thoughts as well – this was cancelled because of the Queen’s health, but COVID and omicron are a good reason as well, and provides some cover for the Queen.

      And I was wondering about the photo shoot outside of Windsor. Wonder if we’ll see the Queen snub Kate again like last year lol.

      • Amy Bee says:

        @Becks: LOL. I have no doubt that one of the reasons for Kate’s hatred towards Meghan was her closer relationship with the Queen.

    • Harper says:

      I’m already suggesting to my out and about children that it’s time to slow down socially so that no one is covid positive for Christmas. Lots of friends and friends of friends who were vaccinated in the spring but did not get their boosters yet are starting to test positive from last week’s Christmas parties with friends and from work.

      If someone came to Windsor and breathed Covid on everyone then the Sandringham Christmas could be cancelled. It makes rare sense for me from this group of self-indulgents.

  10. Sofia says:

    I wonder if some of it is a “take that!” to the government. Don’t get me wrong, she’s 95 and there’s a pandemic and hosting that many people isn’t a good idea at this moment so COVID is a very genuine reason. But I wonder if this is also to invite comparisons between her and the government as a “Look. The poor queen is cancelling her lunch and the government partied during lockdown”.

    Again I do think COVID was a big reason but it wouldn’t surprise me if the the above was another part – albeit a smaller part.

    • Amy Bee says:

      @Sofia: The Queen never goes against the Government. It probably has to do her still being to frail to play host.

      • Sofia says:

        The Queen, perhaps not but it wouldn’t surprise me if the men in grey thought like this.

        But I genuinely believe most of this is COVID related.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        QEII would not go against her government but that does not mean that she cannot dislike BloJo Johnson.

  11. Eurydice says:

    Covid makes sense. And it might be that someone in the RF already has Covid. Otherwise, unless the Queen is feeling really unwell, I would think she’d want to have the luncheon – she doesn’t have too many left.

  12. Harla says:

    Oh darn! And Princess Michael was so looking forward to wearing another racist brooch.

  13. Snuffles says:

    Considering how old most of the. are, the chances of some catching COVID and possibly dying from it was very high.

  14. Eating Popcorn says:

    But, but, but, Meghan & Harry weren’t going to cross the Atlantic because they don’t care about the Queen and here first lonely Christmas without Philip and they don’t care that she has never met Lilibet AND they are trying to steal her Christmas Thunder…AND it will be so much more peaceful without them because OPRAH and Harry’s book deal!

  15. aquarius64 says:

    Because the Omicron variant running rampant in the UK it’s bad optics to have this shindig. The Keen Christmas concert is a bad look because of no masks and violating WAbbey’s mask policy.

  16. Legalese says:

    COVID rates are crazy in the UK. They have 1/5 the population of the US but nearly 1/2 the number of COVID cases. I don’t think this is anything more than that.

  17. Athena says:

    She should lunch with her first cousins and their spouses. People to reminisce with about times gone by. It would probably be more enjoyable than the larger gathering.

    In business and in sport you leave the job when you’re still on top, it’s way past time she retire and just live her life without all these expectations. If a Pope, chosen by god, can retire, so can Elizabeth Regina.

  18. Lizzie says:

    This luncheon is for the B-list of the rf. I’m not sure anyone cares except for them.

  19. anotherlily says:

    The pre-Christmas lunch includes many of the senior royals as well as the extended family. The children also attend but eat in a separate room. It was introduced because the family is too large for everyone to be invited to Sandringham every year. The press only pays attention to the senior royals but Princess Margaret’s children and grandchildren are regular Sandringham guests.

    The lunch is a major media event because the press can easily film the various royals as they arrive at Buckingham Palace. That’s how the ‘blackamoor’ brooch was spotted on the vile Princess Michael of Kent.

    My guess is that Sandringham will also be cancelled or restricted. The plans will have to fit in with whatever is imposed on the country as a whole.

  20. L4Frimaire says:

    Covid cases are going nuts over there again. It would be incredibly tone deaf and a bad public health message to host a party that large.

  21. Robin Samuels says:

    Once again, it’s the Daily Mail projecting. Why that paper still exists says more about the readership than ownership. The RF social calendar is so predictable that there is little need to make significant changes; just print the previous year’s report. They didn’t bother to confirm even though the Q’s absence from public events is noticeable. It’s unbelievable that an aged monarch who I believe is not in the best of health would plan a sizeable social gathering amid a resurging pandemic. This means no photos of guests arriving and departing. No reports of conversation between family members about the Sussex family. No one seems to be concerned about the health and safety of the maids and butlers, also known as the not elitist. I await the announcement of the Sandringham and church walk performance cancellation. I stand by my belief that QE2 is not in the best of health, and the attempt to mask her condition is not working.