- Royal hobby 5. Writing to the Queen
- The nominal head of the country 6. Royal social duties
- Protector of nature 7. Royal open-air receptions
- Gifts from the heart 8. Travelling all round the world
A. An important part of the work of the Queen and the Royal Family is to support and encourage public and voluntary service. One of the ways in which they do this is through association with charities. These include well-known charities such as the British Red Cross and new, smaller charities like Kids Company. About 3,000 organizations list a member of the Royal Family as patron or president.
B. The Queen’s husband, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, has played an important role in many aspects of national life. For example, from 1961 to 1982, he was President of the World Wildlife Fund, which supports the conservation, research and restoration of the environment. During his work, Prince Philip visited the fund’s projects in over 40 countries on 5 continents.
C. Due to the great number of people who wish to contact the Royal Family, communication is only possible via letter. Members of the Royal Family cannot be contacted directly by email or telephone. To open the letter, people should address the Queen with the formal address ‘Madam’ and close the letter with the form ‘I have the honour to be, Madam, Your Majesty’s obedient servant’.
D. Members of the Royal Family carry out nearly 3,000 official journeys in the United Kingdom and overseas every year. Over five decades the Queen has used every possible form of transportation – from elephant to barge. But most Royal journeys use more typical forms of transportation: traditional carriages for ceremonial occasions, the Royal Train and helicopter for visits in the UK, and plane for overseas visits.
E. Visiting other countries, the Queen often gets presents. It is a long-standing tradition. In 1972, for example, Her Majesty received a collection of shells from the Seychelles and in 1991 she was presented with a pair of cowboy boots during her visit to the United States of America. The Queen often receives ‘live’ animals – from giraffes to giant turtles and cheetahs.
F. The Royal Collection of stamps is said to be one of the greatest collections of Great Britain and the Commonwealth. From the early nineteenth century, British monarchs continued to preserve, develop and enjoy the Royal Collection. Today the Collection continues to grow. It includes lots of priceless exhibits. Unlike the Crown Jewels and the Royal residences, the Royal Collection of stamps is privately owned by the Queen.
G. With tea, cakes and a beautiful garden to stroll in, garden parties are among the most relaxed and informal Royal events when over 30,000 people attend. Garden parties have been held at Buckingham Palace since the 1860s, when Queen Victoria introduced what were known as ‘breakfasts’. Nowadays they are attended by people from different social groups.