The gift tags are believed to be from the 1960s and 1970s and are all handwritten notes accompanying gifts. It features among others a message from Prince Charles to Princess Alexandra and her husband Angus Ogilvy which reads, “Alexandra + Angus, with all love for a very happy, inebriated Christmas from Charles”, but also a message from Prince Philip with a joke about the present, “Andrew + Edward for a bouncing Christmas from Papa.”
A note from The Queen to her son Prince Andrew reads, “Andrew with Love from Mummy” and had the highest individual price at £480.
The tags also show the nicknames used within the family as the Princess Royal wrote her aunt Princess Margaret as, “Margot from Anne.” A tag from Lord Mountbatten was signed as, “Uncle Dickie”, a card from Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother was signed as “Granny” and a card from the Queen was signed as “Lilibet.”
While the rest of us tear into our presents on Christmas Day, The Royal Family traditionally opens their presents on Christmas Eve at Sandringham and the presents are placed on a table covered with white linen. The Queen is said to disapprove of overly extravagant gifts.
The original owner of the gift tags was a member of the Royal Household who probably kept the items for himself. He has since died and the gift tags were being sold by members of his family, raising a total of £4,478.
The Queen and Prince Philip make Sandringham House their base from Christmas until early February the following year.
Photo Credit: Sandringham House by John Fielding via Flickr.com