Queen always 'puts the Queen face on' says royal expert
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Mr Brandreth has become a household name thanks to his appearances on shows such as Celebrity Gogglebox and Countdown, as well as his former career as an MP, journalist and royal author. He is renowned for offering an illuminating insight into the Royal Family’s life, and was particularly close to Prince Philip, who sadly passed away earlier this year. The 73-year-old has charmed audiences for years since his political career concluded, and is set to share his hilarious anecdotes with viewers on Sunday Brunch today.
Thanks to his close ties with the Firm, Mr Brandreth is able to give a unique look at what goes on behind Palace walls, and was once told by the Queen’s cousin, Margaret Rhodes, about how there were challenges between Charles and his mother.
Speaking to Mr Brandreth for a piece in the Telegraph back in 2004, Ms Rhodes explained that things had gone “slightly awry with Prince Charles”.
She said: “I’ve been at Birkhall when he’s been there. He’s very conscientious, very committed.
“He’ll have dinner and go back to work. He works so hard but then he’s so extravagant.”
Ms Rhodes added: “The Queen finds Prince Charles very difficult.
“He is extravagant and she doesn’t like that.”
The Queen is well known for not liking royals to appear to live a life of too much luxury and formality, with an example of this being at Christmases.
Her Majesty ensures that expensive gifts are not given between family members at their annual Windsor celebrations, but in fact encourages them to send joke presents to one another.
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According to Channel 4’s ‘A Very Royal Christmas: Sandringham Secrets’ documentary, “gag gifts” are the norm.
Speaking in the documentary, royal correspondent Katie Nicholl explained: “If you can achieve something that is tongue in cheek, and will have the Queen laughing, then you’ve really done well that Christmas.
“The more kitsch, the better.
“Nothing ostentatious, or terribly expensive or lavish, that doesn’t really go down well with the Queen.”
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Charles’ alleged extravagant lifestyle has followed him for years, and some suggest it is similar to the manner in which his grandmother, The Queen Mother, liked to live.
According to the article, the Queen reportedly told friends once that the “amount of kit and staff Charles takes about” was “obscene”.
Despite this, royal observers argue that in recent years the Queen and Charles’ relationship has improved, particularly after Her Majesty said in 2018 it was her “sincere wish” for the Prince of Wales to become the next monarch.
There were suggestions that during the pandemic Her Majesty snubbed Charles, after not mentioning him during an address regarding coronavirus this year.
But royal author Robert Jobson told BBC News in July that it was likely she did not want to embarrass her eldest son.
He said: “I think that the Prince of Wales would find that excruciating if the Queen referred to his illness when so many people have been suffering and dying.
“The bottom line here is the Queen is here as the head of the nation and state.
“She wanted to calm us all and give us that sense of reassurance.”
Mr Brandreth will appear on Channel 4’s Sunday Brunch from 9.30am today.
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