If the shoe fits … We all know that slipping on a pair of shoes for the very first time can sometimes be more painful than comfortable. That’s why the Queen is said to have someone on hand to break in all of her footwear to ensure she doesn’t get any unnecessary aches or pain – or perhaps worst of all, those dreaded blisters.
Surveyor of paintings
We can only imagine the spectacular paintings which must be hanging on the walls
inside Buckingham Palace.
And in 2005, Her Majesty appointed Desmond Shawe-Taylor to oversee her royal collection. According to the Royal Collection Trust, the Surveyor of the Queen’s Pictures has overall curatorial responsibility for 7000 oil paintings and 3000 miniatures.
Master of music
An honorary position, composer Judith Weir was the first ever woman to be appointed the role, in which she will remain for 10 years. “It is a great honour to take up the position of Master of the Queen’s Music,” Judith said. “I hope to encourage everyone in the UK who sings, plays or writes music, and to hear as many of them as possible in action over the next 10 years.”
She’s been sovereign for almost seven decades and during that time, the Queen has featured on many stamps – not to mention, she has a rare philatelic collection which she inherited from her grandfather, George V. Thankfully, they’re all kept in pristine condition thanks to her stamp minder.
Human alarm clock
While the rest of us wake up to the sounds of our iPhones or alarm clocks, the Queen has her very own bagpiper to get her up in the morning. The instrument is played every morning at 9am for 15 minutes under Her Majesty’s window, regardless of whether she is staying at Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle or Balmoral.
There are more than 1000 clocks, barometers and thermometers across all of the Queen’s residences, including Windsor Castle, and of course, some are hundreds of years old. Therefore, Her Majesty has hired someone to go around and check them all – whether that be to wind them or repair them.
Any vacancies? Because we’d gladly apply! Turns out the Queen has someone taste all the food before she and Prince Philip eat – a job which has existed for centuries. Chef Kevin Dundon, who has cooked for her majesty, told People: “I produced two plates: one for [the food taster] and one for her, and he tasted before it was served to her.”
Master of the horse
Her Majesty has long had a passion for horses and even though she’s 94, she still jumps at every opportunity to go out riding. She does however, have the help of her trusted horse master, Lord de Mauley, who joins her every single time she’s out galloping. Apart from attending important events where the Queen may arrive via horse and carriage, the horse master is also responsible for looking after the royal mews and stables.
Following royal tradition, this person is responsible for raising or lowering the royal standard flag at the Queen’s residences to inform the public whether or not the monarch is residing within.
In 2016, Lance Sergeant Nathan Bowen told Forces TV of the role: “We all sign or swear the oath of allegiance to serve Her Majesty and her offices below and this is the place at the top of the tree to do just that.”
Just as the name would suggest, this person is employed to carve Her Majesty’s meat on special occasions, such as Christmas Day.
As of 2017, the Earl of Denbigh and Desmond held this position, which is a hereditary role.