Most children in the UK have to wait until Christmas Day to open the presents under the tree, but this rule doesn’t apply to the Royal Family. Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis are likely to open their presents on Christmas Eve this year when the royal festivities return to Sandringham.
The Royal Family has traditionally opened their presents on Christmas Eve rather than Christmas Day for years.
The Royal Family website confirms the tradition, stating: “On Christmas Eve, The Royal Family lay out their presents on trestle tables and will exchange their gifts at teatime.”
Former royal chef Darren McGrady also told The Sun: “The royals are of German descent so they weave in German traditions to their celebrations.
“After afternoon tea, they open gifts on Christmas Eve, as is the German tradition.”
As most Brits open their presents on Christmas Day, it stands to reason that Kate’s sister Pippa Middleton adheres to this present rule with her three children.
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The Queen spent what would be her final Christmas Day at Windsor Castle with her son, the now King Charles and the Queen Consort, as Covid cases surged last winter.
It is now up to Charles to continue with the royal Christmas traditions the Queen adored, including getting the younger royals to decorate the Christmas trees.
Many of the royals’ Christmas traditions were started by Queen Victoria’s husband Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, including the introduction of a Christmas tree to the royal palaces.
The Queen was very fond of allowing her grandchildren and great-grandchildren to decorate the trees, mentioning it in her 2015 Christmas speech.
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The monarch said: “One of the joys of living a long life is watching one’s children, then grandchildren, then great-grandchildren, help decorate the Christmas tree.”
Charles will also likely lead his family to St Mary Magdalene Church on Christmas Day morning for the annual service.
The Queen would usually travel to the service by car, while other family members would walk on foot and greet well-wishers who lined the route.
This year we may see Kate and William with their three children for the first time, as Louis has not yet publicly attended the Christmas Day church service with his elder siblings.
In 2019 the couple attended with Prince George and Princess Charlotte, the latter of whom wore a green coat to match her mum’s festive hat.
Prince William noted his fond memories of the walk to church in Sandringham on his special Time To Walk audio walking tour for Apple Music.
He said: “I have strong memories of walking down here, and my grandfather, he used to walk so fast that there’d be huge gaps and spaces between all of us walking down, and there’d be us at the back with little legs trying to keep up.
“You know, I think, over time, you start to feel quite attached to those moments and those memories before.”