The stage is set for a typically convivial Christmas at Bucklebury Manor, the charming Georgian home of the Middleton clan. Pippa will be there with her husband James and new baby Arthur, a fourth grandchild for Michael and Carole. So will Pippa’s sociable brother James.
It’s set to be quite a gathering, in fact, with growing speculation that William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, will turn down the traditional Royal Christmas at Sandringham and join the party in the Berkshire countryside instead.
As James Middleton told an interviewer from German television in the past few days: ‘Christmas is all about family and gives the Middletons a chance to regroup.’
Yet for all the domestic merriment on offer in Bucklebury – William is known to particularly enjoy the old-fashioned games the Middletons specialise in – his decision to retreat to the in-laws might also signify something less cheery and rather more troubling, according to Royal observers.
Indeed, it now seems likely that William and Kate will spend Christmas not only apart from Harry and his pregnant wife Meghan, but many miles away.
So is this further evidence that the two brothers are now more determined than ever to live their lives separately?
While the Middletons watch Christmas Strictly and play board games, Royal sources suggest that Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, will be with the Queen and Prince Philip in Norfolk.
Furious Duchess Kate ‘fell out with Meghan Markle before the royal wedding after the former actress ‘berated a member of her staff’ in a Bridezilla moment
Read more of the story above starting at ‘Speculation has been mounting about the tensions between the two couples for’ at……..Hunt for Palace mole who revealed news of rift between Kate and Meghan as royal aides ask: ‘Are William’s doubts over Harry’s wife to blame for tensions?’