January 26, 2023

The Queen's speech

Queen Elizabeth gave a Christmas Day speech every year (Photo/Getty Images)

For many of us, cozying up around the television watching the Queen’s December 25 speech was the pinnacle of Christmas tradition.

However, this year will all be different as Her Majesty is sadly no longer with us and passed away on September 8, 2022.

Queen Elizabeth II was known to host Christmas at the Sandringham Estate every year, but will this tradition continue without her?

And what other changes to the Christmas tradition will the royal family see this year?

Here’s everything you need to know.

Will the Royal Family be spending Christmas in Sandringham this year?

Members of the Royal Family attend church on Christmas Day

The royal family is known to attend church at Sandringham Estate on Christmas Day (Picture: Samir Hussein/WireImage)

That has been confirmed King Charles III continues the tradition of his late mother and will celebrate Christmas at Sandringham this year.

This will actually be the first year since 2019 that the family has had a proper Sandringham Christmas, after plans for 2020 and 2021 were impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Welsh are believed to be among those in attendance, and young Prince Louis is said to be taking part in the Christmas Day walk to St Magdalene’s Church for the first time.

Although the royals are returning to Sandringham this year, royal pundit Jennie Bond told OK! that without the Queen holding the family together, the younger members of the royal family may want to do their “own thing.”

She said: ‘The younger royals will probably want to spend time with their own families, so I think the two or three day celebrations of the past are indeed a thing of the past.

“Although I imagine there will be a meeting at Sandringham, I’m not sure it will be as extensive as it used to be with the Queen, and with as many people.”

She added: “Without the Queen’s linchpin holding an often-fractured family together, they may suddenly decide to do their own thing.”

“It will be the first time since all the turmoil after her death that the royals will stop for a moment and reflect as a family and raise a glass to her.

Another change in Sandringham tradition is that Queen Consort Camilla is expected to invite her own children this year.

A source told The Sun: “Camilla would like her family to be in the heart of Christmas, especially as Charles won’t have his youngest son there.”

What will replace the Queen’s speech?

Families watch the Queen's speech

Families have been watching the Queen’s speech at Christmas for 70 years (Picture: Getty)

Queen Elizabeth II gave a Christmas address every year of her reign, except for 1969.

This year, however, her son, King Charles III, will become the first male monarch to deliver a televised Christmas address.

It is thought that the king will pay tribute to his mother during the speech, which The Telegraph said was recorded on December 13, before the second part of The Harry and Meghan Netflix documentary was released, in which Harry accused his family of lying to protect his brother, Prince William.

Will Harry and Meghan spend Christmas with the royal family?

Harry and Megan

Harry and Meghan at Sandringham in 2018 (Picture: Samir Hussein/WireImage)

Meghan and Harry haven’t spent Christmas at Sandringham since 2018, and as their relationship with the royal family continues to fray, it looks like this year will be no different.

Speak against The Sun royal biographer Angela Levin said the Queen’s death will mean there will be “less pressure” on Harry and Meghan to spend Christmas with the rest of the royals.

She said: “The Queen’s death means there won’t be as much pressure to have the whole family together, which is good because it looks like Harry and Meghan won’t be attending.

“I’m sure Catherine and William will be present for part of the holiday by the King and Queen’s side.

Harry and Meghan are not coming, which I think will be a huge relief for the rest of the family.

“The family will want to make it a very positive day after the Queen’s death and I think the presence of the Sussexes will certainly dampen that.”

MORE: Harry and Meghan ‘want an apology from the royal family’ ahead of King’s coronation

MORE: Pubs can stay open until 1am on King Charles’ coronation weekend

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