Queen Elizabeth II, accompanied by Prince Philip, has continued the 171-year-old tradition of spending the summer at Balmoral Castle. The Queen's visit to the Scottish property may not be an uneventful holiday this year.
A historical "first" had stirred up interest even before the Queen set out for her summer holiday. Every year, the Queen entertains the British Prime Minister and their spouse for a barbecue at the estate. Over the years, the Queen has hosted 13 Prime Ministers and their spouses at Balmoral Castle. However, this year will be the first time that a Prime Minister will be staying at Balmoral with his girlfriend.
Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds are already the first unmarried Prime Minister and partner to live at Downing Street. There were speculations regarding Symonds not being invited to the holiday. However, the Queen graciously extended her invitation to the unmarried couple.
Reports of a growing feud between Prince William and Prince Harry might have been fanned by the upcoming Balmoral holiday arrangements. Earlier reports stated that the two Princes were supposed to visit their grandmother at different times. However, both Princes might now be present at the Balmoral estate at the same time due to schedule changes.
Royal aides have arranged separate accommodations for the two brothers and their families. Royal sources reported to Vanity Fair that Prince Harry, Meghan Markle, and Archie Mountbatten-Windsor will be joining the Queen at the main house. Prince William, Kate Middleton, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis will be staying at the cottage Tam-na-Ghar on the estate.
Last year, Markle had excused herself from attending the annual grouse hunting. Symonds also publicly spoke up against trophy hunting earlier this year. Both Markle and Symonds will not have to tolerate the Royal hunt this year. According to sources, the grouse population has dwindled and this year, the Royals will not be hunting so as to allow the local grouse population to bounce back. The late Princess Diana also hated the tradition of grouse hunting. Even if the tradition does not end permanently, at least this year, the Duchess of Sussex will not have to endure the hunt.
The Queen might have welcomed Markle to stay with her at the main house to spend more time with the Duchess. This is not Markle's first time at the Balmoral estate. During their courtship, Harry had taken Markle to the family's property. After their wedding, the Duchess had joined the rest of the family during last year's holiday. However, this year will be special since the Duchess will be going to the property as a new mother. This will be Archie's first visit to Balmoral. The Queen leaves presents on the pillows of William's children. The great-grandmother will surely have presents waiting for Prince Harry's first-born.
Even though a trip to Balmoral Castle is supposed to be a relaxing holiday, Markle has to pack keeping the dress-code in mind. The Queen absolutely abhors jeans and wedges, according to The Sun. Markle has to leave behind her comfortable wedges and casual jeans when packing for the Balmoral trip. Instead of ripped jeans, Markle is supposedly going to be wearing attires by Scottish designers.
The Queen has started receiving visitors and going though 'Red Boxes' as her holiday commences.