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Coffee & Kate: Wood Farm, Philip's Retirement, & Kate Middleton's Hunting Weekends

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Sometimes delay is your best friend. This weekend's "Coffee & Kate" (or Kate & Kahlua by this time at night...) is going to chat about Prince Philip and the Queen, instead of Catherine Quinn. I think it is a little early to jump in with a judgement in either direction on Kate's new private secretary. My chit-chat theme instead is from a recent Daily Mail piece about the Duke of Edinburgh's retirement.

Sandringham Estate--Main House 

According to the DM piece, Philip and Elizabeth have recently renovated the kitchen at Wood Farm, a "cottage" on the Sandringham Estate, and Philip is using it as his retirement base. The article says Philip is spending much of his time there painting watercolors, reading, and having friends to stay.  The DM portrays Wood Farm as the Queen and Philip's place to "escape the Palace formality." 

Wood Farm on Sandringham via DM

My only real familiarity to Wood Farm is as the host house for William's shooting parties. The Prince had the occasional group of friends out to Sandringham for a weekend shoot, and Kate has been pictured on these shoots on a number of occasions. Here she is at Wood Farm on December 8, 2002. 


Most famously, William, Kate, and Harry were pictured at Wood Farm in 2008 on a pheasant shoot. This was in 2008, after the couple's 2007 reconciliation, and as they moved away from their London party nights and toward lower profile, country living. On a fashion side-note, I love Kate's fur hat here. 


She is the epitome of country chic!


With this background, the DM's description of Wood Farm perplexed me a little. I never imagined the Queen spent any real time there at all. I Googled Wood Farm, and Wikipedia paints a different flavor for the house:
Wood Farm is a modest cottage set in a secluded corner of the Sandringham Estate in Norfolk, England. It is sometimes used by members of the British Royal Family.
Prince John, the youngest son of George V, resided at Wood Farm from 1917 until his death there in 1919. The Duke of Edinburgh occasionally stays there during shooting weekends and shooting parties on the estate. The younger royals have several times held private parties at Wood Farm. Divorced spouses of royals such as Sarah, Duchess of York are often put up at Wood Farm during holiday periods so they can be close to royal children without officially being at the Queen’s festive holiday celebrations at Sandringham House.
You can read the whole DM article on Philip here, but I am very surprised to hear about this arrangement. Buckingham Palace has a pool, and beautiful grounds, and presumably lots of nice reading nooks. I envisioned Philip enjoying the run of the house and lazy mornings in, but I definitely thought these two would continue to spend most of their time together. 

Did anyone else know about this? Does anyone have thoughts about Wood Farm?  Let me know! Sorry again this entry isn't a Catherine Quinn post, but I don't like to muse before I am ready. :) Besides, a super tiny look-back into the dating days of our favorite couple was frankly way more fun.  Ok, it's time for me to do my dishes and enjoy a little night cap with my briefs before bed. Seize the new week, friends! 

66 comments:

  1. I am very interested to hear your thoughts about Catherine Quinn! With that said thank you for this post. I read the article in the DM and was surprised by it. I assumed the Duke would continue to live with the Queen or would go to Windsor. I also didn't know they put divorced spouses in the cottage during holidays.

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  2. Two thoughts...

    PP deserves to enjoy his retirement, but I imagined he would still be at the Queen's side more than not. Perhaps roles are reversing with the Queen going along with her husband's preferences.

    Also, I thought Sandringham had a shorter season (Christmas through January) and, aside from this timeframe and summers at Balmoral, the rest of the year was split between weekdays in London and weekends in Windsor.

    Regarding BP, the gardens may be beautiful, but it has been my understanding that the RF thinks of it as "the office" and they cannot wait to escape for the weekend.

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  3. I'm kind of surprised that Wood Farm is the place he would spend his time (although I can't imagine that anything they have is as cottage-y as we might imagine) but I'm not overly surprised that they are spending time in different locations. While they are very loyal to each other there have always been rumors that they have led separate lives for decades and that their devotion is more to the crown than to each other. They are my parents generation and my mom believes their marriage was a love match on her part but he was in love with the crown. I have no idea if any of these rumors are true but because I've always heard them it doesn't surprise me.

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  4. Can I just say thanks, Jane? I have been looking forward all day to climbing in bed and checking FBTB before going to sleep :-) I love your photos, your thoughts and the discussion from each person who takes the time to comment. Thanks for this community of friends and fellow Kate fans!

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    1. This made my Monday morning. :) Thanks for your sweet comment; I am very grateful you take the time to come over and read!!

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  5. I wonder if Wood Farm is their "Anmer Hall" - an out of the way private place they can let their hair down. It might offer privacy and less need to be moving in and out as moving between London/Windsor might which could be ideal if PP is dealing with health problems. And it gives the Queen an excuse to escape to one of her favorite royal properties as often as possible.

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  6. It was fairly obvious in the summer that he spent only a short time at Balmoral, but I was surprised to read the DM article, but I suppose if he were living at BP he would probably feel that he should accompany the Queen on some engagements.
    There have always been rumours about extra-marital affairs, but no evidence whatever and certainly HM considers him to be her main support.
    The day they married was my 12th birthday, so I think i have probably read every word ever written about their marriage and feel he has given great service to HM and this country.
    Long may he enjoy his retirement.

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  7. Don't know why this came up as "anonymous"---it really should have been labelled "Jean from Lancs"

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    1. I thought of you immediately, Jean. when I read your comment.
      I like thinking of Phillip at Wood Cottage. And HM puttering around in the garden there. It reminds me, too, of the stories of Queen Victoria and her time spent at a cottage in Scotland as "Mrs. Brown, " long after Albert was gone. There was a film with that lovely white-haired actress. Was the story true?

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    2. "Mrs. Brown", 1997, with Judy Dench?

      Recently, I saw "Victoria and Abdul" and thought they copied elements from "Mrs. Brown".

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    3. Yes, royalfan. That's it! Is it based on a true story? I don't know why I never seem to recall her name. I have followed her on film and on several PBS series. She and Helen Mirren are both so personable (and funny at times) and such accomplished actresses.
      I think I saw something about that newer film. It does seem like Mrs. Brown and a turban instead of a kilt. Either they are fiction, one or both, or Victoria found ways to distract from missing Albert. :+)

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    4. Yes, I believe both are based on true stories, Anon1.

      I enjoyed the movies and IMO no one could have done a better job than Judy Dench. I highly recommend them if you have the time and opportunity...

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    5. Thanks, royalfan! I did see "Mrs. Brown" and enjoyed it. She made Queen Victoria come alive. Other portrayals have seemed stiff and almost as though she had just stepped out of a tin-type and was not a living, breathing person. I think Helen Mirren did that for Queen Elizabeth II.

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  8. It's kind of nice to know they're not joined at the hip (which they have practically been for most of Elizabeth's reign). I've always felt that the Duke is a bit of a 'man's man' & it's good he gets time to enjoy his retirement & continue his pursuits at Wood Farm away from the hustle & bustle of London. I imagine it would be quite tiring for him to pop back & forth between places. I wouldn't be concerned with the state of their marriage (though there were rumours of affairs). I think they have a very modern marriage & a mutual respect/understanding of each other's needs.

    P.S. I'm glad William didn't stick with his beard, though I do prefer Harry with one.

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    1. Do you think it's only Phillip that's had affairs, as it's already being insinuated in The Crown? Or do you think Elizabeth has had them too? I thought he'd stay closer like at Windsor Castle but he's off further than I expected!

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  9. I remember seeing Wood Farm come up when I was following Princess Diana. It was one of the properties the young Wales family would stay when they came to visit Granny at Sandringham. That way the family could be with Granny and not under Granny's roof. I believe there are similar properties around Windsor and Balmoral (Craigowan cottage, Royal Lodge, Birkhall, etc.). I am glad the Duke has the time and space to do "his thing". I am sure it also helps to have just a small staff around to see to his needs. The larger palaces must feel more institutional and less cosy. He certainly deserves this time, and I hope the Queen is able to share in it too.

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    1. She deserves it as well.. A lot of people would've said I'm too old by now. Especially as long as she has been Queen.. It's almost like she knows that the people would rather Charles not be King. Therefore she's trying to outlive him! Diana said long ago Charles shouldn't be King or wouldn't be a good King but William will. Personally I agree!! Valerie from the US.

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    2. The context of that Diana remark referred to his having to give up some of his interests either due to lack of time or possible conflict with the role of monarch. I don't believe she ever clearly said that Charles would be a poor king; it was more from Charles's perspective, as I understood it.I have also read stories about Diana thinking Harry would be a better king than William. That remark taken from something she said in an interview (the Panorama?) is an example of how an interpretation by a royal reporter or other commenter can take on a life of its own and become accepted as fact. There are a number of commonly accepted statements about Kate that are referred to as fact that are only partially true, if at all.. Sometimes the original remark can not be run down..it has appeared and grown like a snowball rolling down a hill, but the multiple interpretations remain.
      I do agree HM has fought the good fight but I don't think she feels she has finished the course. She must be thinking of the good of the UK and the Commonwealth, as well as
      an event that traumatized her Mother and others 80 years ago. Abdication-I understand her reluctance; however I don't understand why Parliament can't fix it so a Regency would be applicable without her being labeled incapable or inadequate. (but then, again,that would put Charles in charge)
      She actually does very few duties now, mostly accepting diplomatic credentials and presenting awards to the more prestigious recipients in palace ceremonies. I could understand Charles's wanting to make his expanding role official, but behind the scenes power plays only cause discord and poor press.
      So...I also agree that she may be holding on, as she must be aware of the lack of public support for her son and his wife and what effect his claiming the throne could have at this time. I also wonder if he has used as leverage his commitment to his wife.

      If Charles is to be king, better to let him get on with it. It would be better than the slow demise of this twilight of a monarchy-however brilliant it has been.

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    3. She should retire. He should have been allowed to marry Camilla from the beginning. She is his true love. Elizabeth married the person she loved, I don't see why he wasn't allowed to do the same. I doubt the people are against him. It's the press that drums that up, especially the BBC. Look at that dreadful movie they made about him. It was downright hateful. Yet, they say nothing about his good works with his charities. The Queen can easily retire to Birkhall and let him get on with it.

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  10. I think Philip probably just enjoys the informality of Wood Cottage. The Queen can call or visit him whenever she wants to on the weekends. He'll be back at BP this week-Friday is the Festival of Remembrance and Saturday is Remembrance Day. BP has said Philip and the Queen will stand on the balcony this year on Remembrance Day and Charles will lay a wreath on her behalf; there are only a few occasions when the Queen hasn't laid the wreath, including during her last two pregnancies.

    Nice pics of William and Kate and of then newlyweds Peter and Autumn Phillips.

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    1. I initially thought that too but looking closer its Harry! Blond doesn't appear to be Chelsy Davy.

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  11. The fact is that the Queen and Duke have always used the cottage when in Sandringham. Running the entire house if very expensive, as it is immense. This has been their place often when they're supposed to be in Sandringham and they're not entertaining the family as they do at Christmas. I don't think there's anything strange in their being apart for part of the week. The Queen travels by helicopter between BP and WF and even the train is a matter of less than two hours. I imagine the Duke needs assistance and has a staff in a comfortable place with few stairs.

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  12. Maggie - MinneapolisNovember 6, 2017 at 10:04 AM

    Based on the DM article, it sounds like he's still doing Windsor on the weekends, which has been what they have done as a couple (when not at Balmoral of course) for ages now - BP during the week and then Windsor during the weekends. So they're still spending their weekends together and the article mentions the Queen flew down to Wood Farm to see him for a few days last week so to me, it kind of just sounds like the royal version of commuting to/from work haha. Such is the luxury of having a helicopter that can be used for personal transport at any time.
    I also just think it seems to be the royal way that husband and wife spend time apart. Even with William and Kate, and their obviously very heavy emphasis on family life, they seem to be happy with a routine that involves spending time apart somewhat often as a married couple. I don't mean this in a bad way - whatever works for individual couples! Although frankly sometimes I wonder if Harry would not have had so many failed romances until now (knock on wood!!) if royals, esp the men, were not "taught" to behave similarly. William got very lucky that Kate was so flexible and willing to adjust to his schedule, esp when dating, but that's not likely to be common and I wouldn't be surprised if Harry had similar expectations that his previous girlfriends disliked. But that's entirely an assumption on my part, of course.

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  13. Privacy and informality - esp the latter - is behind this I think. Also Sandringham House is open to the public so that is a non-starter. They have never lived in each other's pockets so this isn't different for them. HMQ is only in London 3 days a week.
    He deserves to retire as he sees fit. Norfolk air is definitely healthier than London.

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  14. Very interesting to read everyone's comments, thanks for blogging, Jane!

    My husband and I both travel for work and we spend about 30-40% of our time not together, due to work demands. I think some space is good for a marriage, though I wouldn't presume to know what any marriage is like after 70 whole years (!!). I'm guessing he likes the informality and the low expense, and that they see each other on weekends and occasionally during the week, in addition to any family events and engagements at which he'll participate. I'm guessing it doesn't end up being that much time apart, and that he's okay with having some alone time in exchange for the privacy and relaxed atmosphere - plus fresh air!

    Some time apart makes your time together more meaningful (and gives you conversation topics) and encourages you to really take responsibility for yourself outside of the marriage, in my experience. Both good things!

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  15. My take away is that while they will continue to spend weekends together at Windsor, he will spend the week at Sandringham which he loves ever since he was put in charge of the estate some 50 years ago. He loves Sandringham the way Charles loves Highgrove

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  16. This is retirement. When retiring we usually downsize and want to stay away from the world. They have a very big family and it appears everyone seems to have a handle on royal duties. It's nice to see Phillip finally get the peace and quiet he's longed for!

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  17. Prince Phillip has been cheating on the Queen for years. He even has a mistress in her 40s that he rides buggies with all the time. DM has even done articles about them and their "close" relationship.

    I also think that's why people like William and Kate, we believe they have a marriage based on love. Rare in the royal family.

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    1. I don't think ANY of us can know whether Philip has cheated Anon 4:23 (unless we did the dirty deed with him ourselves ;)  I do hope W&K have a happy, emotionally close marriage without infidelity although we can't REALLY know whether that's true now or will be true in the future. Regardless, I think it's kind of silly to compare one royal couple married for 70 yrs (with pretty much all those yrs spent in the public eye with great public responsibilities) to another royal couple married less than 7 yrs and considered "part-time workers" until recently. But to make that comparison and hold *the latter* up as the epitome of a true love/no cheating/lasting forever/happy marriage??? As I said, I hope W&K are happy now and continue to be happy.  But IMO we have more "evidence" Will cheated on Kate, the girlfriend, than we do Philip has cheated on his wife-- even if we accept the DM as a reliable source which I typically do not.

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    2. @lizzie you say we have no evidence about queen and philip but we have more evidence about william in dating years.... do we? Or are that tabloids wo were trying to stirr trouble where there was none. What evidence have we about william... stories about jecca and that other girl (forgot her name) who both denied it and said it never happend. Or william dancing/talking with girls but in my book that is not cheating. So my point is there is in both cases no evidence of cheating. No pictures or video just tabloid stories.

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    3. True...but there have been plenty of stories, some with pictures that may not show actual infidelity but are more "incriminating" than going buggy-riding with a female member of the family. My point was why reject the W&K stories/pictures and hold certain beliefs about the almost mystical quality of their marriage (after less than 7 full yrs) while glomming onto pictures of buggy-riding as obvious evidence of cheating after 70 yrs of marriage? It comes down to we don't really know what goes on in either case but we do know one of the marriages certainly has stood the test of time as a partnership. As I hope W&K's will too but 7 is not 70.

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    4. Maggie - MinneapolisNovember 7, 2017 at 6:18 PM

      In a lot of ways, it seems like people like William and Kate bc theit marriage has indeed been stable and based in love, but unlike 75% of the Queen's children with their first marriages, but actually very much like the Queen's own marriage, at least based on any opinion that doesn't make a wild number of assumptions that as lizzie had so astutely pointed out, would at least be more fair to make against the marriage that has only existed for about a tenth as long as the Queen's. And for what it's worth, while I honestly think that everything about the Cambridges marriage so far is really as promising as it can get in terms of predicting long term success, thefe were certainly adultery issues in their dating years. Or at least, one of the major things that precipitated the 2007 breakup on Kate's part (although she seemed to want to fix the issue not break up bc of it)was pictures of William going clubbing in London (without her) and having his hands cupped over some random girls' breasts. While sure doesn't mean it went further than that, I dunno similar to Kate if my boyfriend did that I would certainly find it pretty problematic. And isn't that picture evidence so much more of actual real evidence of even the possibility of adultery than with the Queen and Philip?

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  18. If you have ever seen the BP floor plan for the family quarters, you will know why no one wants to stay there longer than necessary. Not even the Queen has her own en suite bathroom. Everyone has to go down the halls past servants and anyone else... I have not seen a floor plan for Sandringham's private areas, but even in Edward VII's day, the private rooms were considered small and chopped up. More than one person described it all as a rabbit warren. And as noted in other replies, both the BP & S formal areas are open to the public a lot. Who wouldn't want some privacy in retirement? Finally, most elderly people get cold very easily. Wood Farm is no doubt quite nice inside but I bet it is much easier to heat up on cold winter days.

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  19. My guess is you are speaking of Lady Brabourne (Penny)......who is a family member and not a love interest.

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    1. Oh, really, a family member? Do share what her relation is to Phillip.

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    2. She is the wife of Lord Mountbstten's grandson--so she is now is now Countess Mountbatten.
      Prince Philip and her husband's mother were first cousins.
      Not a blood relation, but still a close one.

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    3. That’s not a blood relation and I believe they are having an affair.

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    4. 1:55 can't a 95 years old man drive a buggy with the 60 years old wife of his goodson without it being insinuated that they have an affair? Must women/men relationships always be amorous? Perhaps they are just friends enjoying the same sport?

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    5. The Mountbatten are prince Philip closeth family, with blood and friendship ties strengthened by tragedy. Lady Brabourne is by all accounts a strong and strong willed personality, able to manage her huge estate single handedly. There is every evidence of strong and deep family ties none of an affair

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  20. Prince Philip has always loved Norfolk and the Queen and he have often stayed at Wood Farm aside from those big family Christmases. Here's a local press article from last year confidentl predicting retirement would mean more time in Norfolk http://www.lynnnews.co.uk/news/prince-philip-s-west-norfolk-love-affair-1-7957254

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  21. Jane, I have a huge question & it may antique at the moment. Do you know what was the cause of Pippa Middleton’s break up with Nico? I have never read an article of the cause & in every photo I saw they were deliriously in love. Sorry to,bring up the past however I feel you of all writers can shed light .

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    1. He moved to Switzerland

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  22. Question does anyone think it would be a grand idea the queen retire & join her prince to enjoy the golden years together???

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    1. Grand? Sure. Realistic? Not really. Decades ago she said she dedicated her whole life--long or short--to serving her people and it seems she meant it.

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  23. Charlotte looks like Kate in the younger pic of her here.

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  24. Some pictures in The Mirror" and "The Star" of the Cambridge family plus nanny on Chester station on Sunday afternoon, where they took the train back to London.
    Guess is they had been at Eaton Hall (Duke of Westminster's home) for the annual bonfire and fireworks display.

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    1. Thanks, Jean! 😊 Cute to see them in relaxed moments. William is dressing like quite the Dad.πŸ˜‚

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  25. Don’t let the word “cottage” fool you. I was reading coffee table book about history of Princess Diana ancestrial home “Althorpe”. In it was the cottage Diana wanted as a weekend escape. It was spectacular and quite large. Jane as always I love you blog . It’s the best!!!

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  26. On Wood Farm, I read a biography of the Queen and it mentions the she does use it for private visits rather than staying at Sandringham House because it means the Court does not have to go with her. Apparently that is a very expensive move. She goes to Windsor every weekend and since she treats that as her real home, there's always a full staff. But it seems the other houses do not have that every day of the year.

    Prince Charles often uses Sandringham House and has to bring his staff, including his chef, with him. When William and Kate were dating they often went to Wood Farm and Charles would supply the kitchen with food from Highgrove including meals prepared for them by his chef.

    The English use the term cottage but obviously it is much larger than what most people would think of as a cottage.

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    1. Food from Highgrove? Wood Farm is close to Sandringham House, but no where near Highgrove.However, Charles is known for extravagant gestures; perhaps he helicoptered the meals up to Norfolk? There was a cottage (an actual cottage by the river) in Scotland in the Balmoral area and Charles's Birkhall where W&C reportedly stayed. Could this be what you mean?

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    2. That photo of Kate in outdoor wear said to be taken outside Wood Farm...it doesn't look like Wood Farm but I saw a photo in the Guardian of a Highgrove outer building, perhaps stables, that does look similar.

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    3. Anon1, I mean exactly what I wrote. Your opinion that sending food from Highgrove to Wood Farm is an extravagance, and yes that is Wood Farm in the photo, is apparently not shared by the Prince of Wales.

      Kate and William also received regular deliveries of organic food from Highgrove's vegetable gardens when they were living at Anmer Hall. They now receive regular deliveries at Kensington Palace.

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    4. Quite the generous & extravagant gesture either way! Of course all the royals live extravagantly, but if I went away to a private country retreat with a longtime romantic interest (especially when I was in my 20's) unless the dwelling had a very primitive barely usable kitchen I'd have wanted to cook for ourselves. Lazy romantic breakfasts, "appetizer-type" foods for a grazing dinner (sometimes in bed) or maybe a simple jointly-prepared pasta dinner eaten in front of the fireplace, for lunch some crusty bread, cheese & wine to consume during a hike or ramble through the woods (unless there were hunters about & I'd forgotten to bring some blaze-orange yet somehow still attractive (?) clothes) I can't imagine anything less appealing in that situation than having meals brought in that had been prepared by a chef! Fortunately I've never had to worry about being in that position ;) but I have had some pretty romantic meals cooked over a campfire!

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    5. I would go along with food being supplied for W&K (or the household in general), but I have a feeling W&K wanted to be on their own as much as possible. It's how their romance started, and I believe they enjoy it to this day in that hugely unpopular second kitchen in KP. :-))

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    6. @lizzie @royalfan, They have a large household now. They aren't in their twenties and haven't been for a few years. They have a full staff and two children with another on the way.

      As for cooking romantic breakfasts at Wood Farm, when Kate and William were there, they were there with a shooting party. So who does the cooking? Kate? Staying behind and prepping all those meals, including sending out a shooting picnic lunch? And since they've installed a brand new kitchen at Wood Farm, it sounds like the old kitchen was not functional, especially as Prince Charles saw the need to send prepared food for William and his guests.

      Will and Kate did want to be on their own in the beginning and why wouldn't they? There were only the two of them in a small house in Anglesey. But even there, they had a housekeeper. Kate did all their cooking. But when George was born, her mother came to stay with them for awhile. And not long after, William got his former nanny to come and stay, until they hired their present nanny, just before their tour to New Zealand and Australia.

      When they moved to KP and Anmer Hall, they had a full time housekeeper and a live in nanny.

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    7. MK Fitzgerald, I'm sorry that I was not more clear in my comment. I base my opinion more on privacy then romance.

      William is fiercely protective of his family's privacy and I do not believe for one moment that he would want staff from another household under his roof. Consider all the folks who worked for Charles and Diana and ended up writing books about what went on within the four walls... me thinks that Camilla would be the first one in the kitchen after the chef returned LOL.

      In my opinion, this knowledge, combined with William's experience with the Middleton's, is the reason that William and Kate are cautious and also prefer *some* degree of normalcy if and when possible.

      I'm not suggesting that they don't have help... Of course they do. But I also believe that they want that person or persons to be loyal to them and not another boss.

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    8. RoyalFan, oh I see the confusion here. I'm not using my personal opinion, as you are. I made my comment based on what I've read in articles in Time magazine, and books and articles by Katie Nicholl and Claudia Joseph. They both seem to have an insider’s track on what goes on especially since what they write never seems to be disputed by the Palace.

      For instance, it was in a recent biography of Prince Charles that I learned he pays for all of William and Kate's household expenses as he also does for Prince Harry. It was also there, and in a Katie Nicholl’s article, that Charles supplies all the fresh organic produce to William and Kate for both Anmer Hall and Kensington Palace from Highgrove. He also supplies Prince Harry’s kitchen at KP and his own kitchen at Clarence House.

      Charles also paid for all the renovations to Anmer Hall and Kensington Palace except for what the taxpayers paid for. The new roof, removal of asbestos and black mold found in both properties, new plumbing and electrical wiring, were all paid for by the state. But the rest, the painting, the modern soft furnishings, the kitchen remodels, were all paid for by Charles.

      Only one kitchen in Kensington Palace was paid for by the taxpayers since it is a professional kitchen meant to support entertaining during official functions. The second "family kitchen" Kate requested was paid for by Prince Charles. Almost all their furnishings in both houses came from the Queen's store houses. This includes writing desks, Oriental rugs, traditional sofas and chairs, Chippendale dining tables, and other antiques.

      All their other soft furnishings were paid for by Prince Charles. He also paid for the private apartment inside 1A for Kate's parents when they are staying. It also includes a kitchen.

      As for William being determined not to rely on "other households," and "other bosses," I don't know what that means, but I know William did have his former nanny come and stay with George until the permanent nanny was hired. And apparently he has no problem getting help from Granny and his father.

      According to Katie Nicholl’s, the Queen sent one of her housekeepers from Buckingham Palace to keep house for William and Kate when they were still living in Anglesey, and she also sent a housekeeper from Sandringham to Anmer Hall until Kate found her own.

      Kate still uses the housekeeper from Buckingham Palace at KP. I believe her name is Antonia and William and Kate are very pleased with how she runs things for them. I don't see why they would not want to rely on Prince Charles, the Queen, and the Middleton's for help. It's their family, after all. And it seems to be a very nice and helpful family at that.

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    9. @MK Fitzgerald-- Your original post at 10:56 stated when W&K "were dating" they often went to Wood Farm. You further stated that Charles had food and full meals delivered to them from Highgrove when they were there. W&K WERE in their 20's then and certainly had no children. You did not say in your original post--the one I responded to-- that they were at this location 1) only with a group, not as a sole couple and 2) were there only as a part of a shooting party. Since all you said was that they were dating when they traveled to this location, I assumed--apparently wrongly-- that it was a romantic get-away. If it was a shooting party,  I hope the kill was part of somebody's meal somewhere. I doubt the far-way chef was able to accomplish that though for anyone.

      A kitchen that hasn't been "renovated for 30 yrs" would hardly meet my definition of "primitive" or barely usable. By primitive I meant a kitchen without running water or a kitchen where the only stove was a hard to operate wood stove. I seriously doubt that was the case for the kitchen there, even if it hadn't been renovated since the late 1980s!

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    10. @lizzie, Yes, they went to Wood Farm for shooting parties. Charles did send them food, I don't know why you find that so unbelievable, nor do I care, but your assumption that they would eat their game birds is false. When grouse or any game birds are killed, they are not eaten the same day. They are put in a special cooler at 55 F and allowed to dry out for up to 5 days. Drying them removes the 'gamey taste' as well as making the birds safer to eat as the drying process keeps the gut from overgrowing with bacteria.

      As for a romantic getaway, I doubt anybody would consider Wood Farm romantic. It was the final home of young Prince John, son of George V and brother of George VI who died at a young age from epilepsy. His last few years of life were spent at Wood Farm with his minders. From what I've read in the biography of George V, Wood Farm was left largely untouched after John died, and used only for shoots by George VI and later Queen Elizabeth when they were in residence. Because they were in residence at Sandringham, they had the chef send out lunch to Wood Farm.

      William and Kate would not have the luxury of a Sandringham chef, hence this seems why Prince Charles sent food to them and their party. It has been described in various books and articles I've read as not having been kept up well over the years because of the association with Prince John. I imagine that is why Prince Philip is making renovations. Apparently, he's not put off by the house's history.

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  27. I'm reliving days gone by, lizzie. Moonlit ice skating followed by hot cocoa and sausages roasted over a bon-fire.
    I'd seen photos of Kate shopping at a green-grocer in a village near Anmer, but had never heard of Charles's deliveries. I don't read around that much. I guess I missed it. I do know that Catherine apparently eats and cooks close to a Mediterrean diet so organic veggies would come in handy. I also read she keeps a kitchen garden of her own.
    I can imagine a scenario where Charles may have provided a chef or catered meals for William and Catherine once or twice for a special occasion, but not as a routine. It just doesn't sound to me like something Kate would go for on a regular basis.

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    1. I don't see any post here that says Prince Charles supplied catered meals all the time for Will and Kate. Where is that post?

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    2. I'm not much of an ice skater anon 1-- not much of a chance for that in the southern US. But walks in the snow and hot cocoa? Yes!

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    3. "...they OFTEN went to Wood Farm and Charles supplied..."

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    4. lizzie-my ice skating started as a child in an area close to the Canadian border but my moonlight skating parties were in the mountains of the West. My granddaughter now skates on artificial ice in the mid-south. Not the same at all. No stars, no warming hut. No pine-scented air.

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  28. Loving the coffee and Kate chats!

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  29. If you think Wood Farm doesn't look like a cottage, do take a look at York Cottage on the Sandringham estate.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/York_Cottage#/media/File:York_Cottage.JPG

    I'm guessing this will go to Prince Harry and Meghan when they get married since the Queen gifted Anmer Hall to William and Kate after their wedding.

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