Chocolate Windsor Castle, plastic angel and gnome among official gifts to Royal family - Telegraph
Chocolate Windsor Castle, plastic angel and gnome among official gifts to Royal family
From the weird to the wonderful, what the Queen and other members of the Royal family were given in 2013
Some, like a pearl necklace given to the Queen, are nothing short of breathtaking. Others, like an old wheel nut given to the Duke of Kent, are verging on the tacky. Every item on an official list of gifts given to members of the Royal family last year provides a fascinating insight into how various dignitaries, companies and members of the public have tried to solve the issue of what to give someone who wants for nothing - often with hilarious consequences.
During a visit to Canada by the Princess Royal
last year, a contemporary artist who had grappled with the issue of what to give her settled on a portrait of the Princess riding a moose. Other gifts she received included a knitted hat with horse's ears, a plastic angel, a gnome and a book called Your Arms Remind Me of Pork Luncheon Meat.
Among the eclectic gifts given to the Duke of Kent
were a "locking wheel nut from an old car on a presentational plinth" from Aston Martin, some baking paper and a punnet of cherries.
, unsurprisingly, enjoyed the most lavish gifts, including a five-strand pearl necklace from the President of the United Arab Emirates, four enamelled scarab beetles from Bangladesh and a diamond and tourmaline brooch from Saskatchewan in Canada. Among the edible items given to the Queen were a chocolate Windsor Castle and a chocolate Irish State Coach from the confectioner Mars, and a gingerbread cathedral given to the Duke of York by the Lord Mayor of Munster.
Official gifts to members of the Royal family are not their private property, but are held by them on behalf of the Queen. They can be consumed, used or displayed by the Royal family, loaned to galleries or, in the case of gifts worth less than £150, given to charity if they are not likely to be used. The list published by Buckingham Palace today covers the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, the Duke of York, Princess Royal, Earl and Countess of Wessex, Duke of Kent, Duke and Duchess of Gloucester and Princess Alexandra. Separate lists published by Clarence House showed gifts given to the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Harry.
The Duke of York
's gifts included three golf clubs given to him by the hotelier Surinder Arora, an iPad mini from the Open University, a Sea King desk tidy and a plate from the Azerbaijani Minister of Foreign Affairs. The Duke of Edinburgh
's gifts included a miner's lamp, a bottle of beer, two pairs of cufflinks and a morse code key mounted on wood. Prince Harry
's tour of the US netted him a leather flying jacket from Michelle Obama, a falconry glove from the US Air Force and a 3D printed doll of himself.
On a tour of the Middle East last March the Duchess of Cornwall
was given a necklace by the Sultan of Oman and the Prince of Wales
was given a metal model of King Abdulaziz International Airport.
, the Queen's cousin, fared worst of all: she received nothing at all in 2013.