Inside the queen’s holidays in Balmoral, troubled by tensions in the family

Elizabeth II arrived in Balmoral, in the Highlands, for the traditional summer vacation. She will stay there for about ten weeks, away from official duties, and free to enjoy her beloved estate against the idyllic backdrop of mountains, forests and lakes. The sovereign first stayed at the Craigowan Lodge, a delightful seven-room “sun” mansion. This year, in fact, the Balmoral Castle remained open to the public until August 2, so it is likely that The Queen has already decided to move into the princely mansion with 57 rooms. But there is also the possibility that the sovereign – now alone after the death of the beloved prince Philip – continue to stay at Craigowan Lodge, much more intimate and smaller than the castle. Whichever accommodation Elizabeth chooses for her summer vacation, one thing is certain: Balmoral is a very special place for the Queen, as she was for her late husband. Here the two they spent part of their honeymoon in 1947; here they celebrated, in 1972, the silver wedding; here they waited every year for the rest of the royal family: children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren; here they arrived together, for the last time, in August two years ago. As he unveiled Eugenie of York in the documentary Our Queen at NientyElizabeth II loves Balmoral: «It is the most beautiful place in the world. Grandma is really happy there“.

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As per tradition, i Windsor also this year, between August and September, they will join the queen. In rotation, the members of the royal family will spend a few days at the castle – or in the surrounding mansions – to share with the ninety-six-year-old monarch a few days of simplicity between horseback riding, hiking in the countryside and barbecues. But this year there is a problem. How to reconcile the presence of Andrew of York – who loves Balmoral and every summer he usually stays there for a long time with his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson – with that of Charles And William of England? The heir to the throne and his son, in fact, see Andrea as the smoke in the eyes since the prince involved in Epstein scandal risked the shame of a trial for sexual abuse of a minor. Risk dodged for a corner with a millionaire compensation to his accuser Virginia Giuffrè but the sordid affair nevertheless put the Crown in enormous embarrassment. So Carlo and his eldest son have no intention of being under the same roof as Andrea. Even William last June, before the ceremony of the Order of the Garterhad given the queen an out out: “If the Duke of York is there, Kate and I are not coming“. The Queen granted her request by leaving Prince Andrew behind the scenes so that William and Kate Middleton in the spotlight. And avoid (further) gossip.

But now William and Carlo risk finding Andrea in the way during their stay at Balmoral. “Andrea, it is almost certain, will spend a long time in Scotland alongside his motheralso because he has nothing else to do now that his flow of invitations is almost exhausted and traveling abroad exposes him to the flashes of the paparazzi “, explained the writer Clive Irving. Adding: «It is very unlikely that Charles and William will visit the castle while Andrew is there“. If they slept under the same roof as the duke, in fact, “they would imply that they have maintained good relations with him.” And this, after the Epstein scandal, must not happen. For the good of the Crown. Carlo and Camilla, as well as William, Kate and their three children, certainly won’t skip the traditional summer stay at Balmoral. But they will visit the queen at a time when Andrea will be elsewhere.

Other tensions, as the British press points out, could be caused by the presence in the Highlands of Harry And Meghan Markle. In recent days the rumor has circulated that the sovereign has invited his nephew and his wife to spend time together in her beloved Scotland, to mend her relations but also to get to know her great-grandchildren better. Archie And Lilibet. An indiscretion later denied by Page Six. According to the American site the Sussexes don’t appear on the guest list at all. And in any case, they would hardly have accepted the invitation. Last June, during the short stay in London for the Queen’s Jubilee, they seem to have heard marginalized by august relatives (especially William and Kate): «They were furious, they couldn’t wait to go back to America». And in fact they left early. A holiday in Balmoral in the company of the royal family, therefore, appears very unlikely. And anyway the two, he says Page Six, have other plans: they will remain in America pending the publication of the bombshell book with which Harry will tell about his life in the royal family. The tome will only be released in November but has been worrying the Windsors for months. And who knows if in the Highlands, chatting in front of the fireplace or sipping a cup of tea, the queen and her august relatives will also talk about the (new) tile that hangs over the royal family.

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