Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla to spend Christmas at Highgrove House

By Zach Harper, with files from Danielle Stacey

Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla to spend Christmas at Highgrove House

Following the news that the Queen and Prince Philip will celebrate Christmas "quietly" at Windsor Castle this year, Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla have opted to spend the holiday at Highgrove, their home in Gloucestershire, a report says.

According to HELLO! UK, the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall will spend Dec. 25 on their own, but will visit with Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh "at some point." Camilla plans to see her family over the holidays.

Under U.K. government rules regarding the coronavirus pandemic, three households may gather together from Dec. 23 to 27 to celebrate the holidays, but they must not see any other households outside of that bubble. That rule means it is not possible for the Royal Family to gather together to spend Christmas at the Sandringham estate in Norfolk, as has been tradition since 1988.

The Queen and Prince Philip at Windsor Castle during Christmas 1987, the last time they spent the holidays there. Photo: © Julian Parker/UK Press via Getty Images

"Having considered all the appropriate advice, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh have decided that this year they will spend Christmas quietly in Windsor," Buckingham Palace said in a statement on Dec. 2.

Camilla spending time with her family means she and Charles will be able to see her children, Tom Parker Bowles and Laura Lopes, along with Camilla's grandchildren, Eliza, Gus, Louis, Lola and Freddy.

L-R: Pippa Middleton, James Middleton, Michael Middleton, Duchess Kate, Prince Charlotte, Prince George and Prince William are seen in Bucklebury, Berkshire attending church on Christmas Day, 2016. Photo: © Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage

As for the Cambridges, they haven't revealed their plans yet, though it's possible they may travel to Berkshire to be in a bubble with Duchess Kate's parents, Carole and Michael Middleton. They last spent Christmas Day with the Middletons in 2016. If they were joined by another household, it could only be that of Kate's sister Pippa and her family or her brother James and his fiancee, Alizee Thevenet, under the current rules.

James and Alizee have been spending the last few weeks in Scotland at the Glen Affric estate owned by James Matthews's family, and bubbled with Carole and Michael during the lockdown this spring and summer, so they may opt to stay in Scotland over the break. Pippa and James Matthews may want their son, Arthur, to visit with his cousins, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis.

A family watches the Queen's Christmas speech on Dec. 25, 2019 in Bristol. Photo: © Richard Baker/In Pictures via Getty Images

While the Queen and Philip will spend Christmas Day quietly together, we can, of course, look forward to Her Majesty's annual Christmas speech. This year, she'll likely focus on the trials and tribulations we've all faced this year due to COVID-19. She'll also likely encourage Britain and the Commonwealth to keep calm and carry on as we continue with restrictions before a vaccine for the novel coronavirus becomes widely available.

The Queen made a similar speech in early April, encouraging the public to do their part to slow the spread of the virus. Quoting the late Dame Vera Lynn, she said: "Together we are tackling this disease, and I want to reassure you that if we remain united and resolute, then we will overcome it."

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