The Queen and Prince Philip were forced to interrupt their holiday for a very important reason

(Image credit: Tim Graham/Getty Images)

The Queen is undoubtedly one of the most talked-about people in the world, with the monarch famed for her sharp wit, sweet bonds with family members and her Queen-worthy perks (from having someone to wear in her shoes to banning this food from her kitchen).

This week however it wasn’t her extra perks and privileges that got the world talking, but instead her holiday plans, with Queen Elizabeth known to summer in her Balmoral holiday home each year.

Balmoral this year has been a constant source of conversation, from the reports that Prince William and Kate Middleton might be delaying their visit to avoid Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, to the revelation that the Queen’s reported favourite holiday activity has been cancelled.

This week, Balmoral made news once more, as the Queen and Prince Philip interrupted their holiday to bestow a very important and rare honour.

Yes, really. The two royals honoured former member of the royal household, Paul Hughes, who worked as the chief clerk and accountant of The Duke of Edinburgh's Household in 2009.

The honour in question was the Insignia of a Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order, a privilege that is reportedly extremely rare.

But what is the Insignia of a Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order? Well, according to the royal family’s official website, it’s a personal gift of the Sovereign, given only ‘to those who have served The Queen or the monarchy in a particular way.’

Congratulations to Mr Hughes, and we hope that the Queen and Prince Philip continue to have a relaxing holiday!

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.