Queen breaks with tradition again to spend Christmas Day at Windsor

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The Queen is again breaking with tradition due to COVID and will spend Christmas Day at Windsor.

Her Majesty made the decision not to travel to Sandringham in Norfolk earlier this week and will instead be joined by family members at Windsor Castle.

It's the second year that she has stayed at Windsor. Last year she was with the Duke of Edinburgh and members of staff.

It was confirmed on Thursday that the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall will be with the Queen on Christmas Day this year.

The Queen's 10 most memorable Christmas messages

It's unclear if other members of the family will also join them. Prince Andrew and his family live on the Windsor Estate and Prince Edward and his family live nearby.

Princess Anne is currently isolating after her husband Tim Laurence tested positive for COVID. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be spending Christmas in Norfolk with some of Kate's family.

The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Earl and Countess of Wessex, and The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester will attend a morning service at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on Christmas morning.

Every Christmas morning the Queen goes to church but it hasn't been confirmed which chapel she will attend on the Windsor estate, although it's anticipated she will go privately.

This will be the first year that she has spent Christmas without Prince Philip following his death in April.

The palace, which does not release details of her Christmas message ahead of it being broadcast, have hinted that she is expected to deliver a very personal Christmas Day message in the year that her husband died.

Yesterday Buckingham Palace released a photograph of the monarch taken during the recording of her annual festive address, which was filmed last week.

Alongside the 95-year-old is a photograph of her and Prince Philip taken in 2007 at Broadlands, once the home of Philip's uncle Lord Mountbatten and where they spent some of their honeymoon. The photo recreated their famous honeymoon picture from 1947.

The Queen, dressed in bright red, is also wearing the same sapphire chrysanthemum brooch that she wore in both photographs.

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The Queen's Christmas message will be broadcast at 3pm.

The theme and words are always carefully chosen by the Queen herself, with assistance from her private secretaries, and often seen as an important moment for the monarch to rally the country or send a message of reassurance.

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