It’s long been known that Balmoral is the residence in which the Queen feels most at home.
Aside from pranking tourists and taking long, country walks with her dogs, there are a number of Balmoral traditions that the Queen looks forward to every year without fail – including the Braemar Gathering, which the monarch was forced to miss for a second year in a row due to Covid-19.
Her Majesty typically spends her summer holidays at Balmoral, though this year her Balmoral trip marks a sad occasion, as it will be the first time she will summer alone since the death of her husband Prince Philip earlier this year.
The Scottish estate is also, of course, famous for the dreaded ‘Balmoral test’; the weekend-long royal initiation in which guests are observed over a country weekend to see how well they fit into the family. (According to The Crown, Princess Diana triumphed, while Margaret Thatcher floundered.)
But the most unusual Balmoral tradition of all is, arguably, the Queen’s soundtrack of choice for waking up in the morning.
According to Tatler the Queen begins every morning at Balmoral with a bagpipe playing for fifteen minutes outside her window (casual) – and has done throughout her 69 year reign. Oh, and she’s just stopped short of encouraging the Great British public to do the same.
Yep, the official Royal Family account took to Twitter on Tuesday to encourage the public to celebrate the musical institutions Her Majesty most holds dear, including The Piobaireachd Society, which encourages the study of the classical music of the bagpipe.
‘#DidYouKnow The Queen is Patron of over 500 organisations and charities? Among them are a number of musical institutions including @londonsymphony, @royalchoral and The Piobaireachd Society, which encourages the study of the classical music of the bagpipe!’ the Royal Twitter account wrote earlier this week.
As it turns out, getting woken up by the bagpipes is a tradition that has been custom for the monarch since the 19th century, and the Queen has been known to enjoy a proper Scot’s wake-up call at all of her primary royal residencies, Buckingham Palace included.
Well, that’s unexpected. But if it’s good enough for HRH…