Monday, 13 July 2015

Writing to the Royals on Behalf of a Company, Organization or Charity

Who to Write to: In general, when writing to a Royal on behalf of a Company, Organization or Charity, you want to write to their Private Secretary.

List of Private Secretaries for British Royals 
& where to address your letter 
(BP - Buckingham Palace(CH- Clarence House) (KP - Kensington Palace)

Queen Elizabeth: Mr. Edward Young    (BP)

Prince Phillip: Brigadier Archie Miller-Bakewell    (BP)

Prince Charles & Camilla: Mr. Clive Alderton  (CH) 

Prince William: Mr. Miguel Head   (KP)

Duchess Catherine: Ms. Catherine Quinn  (KP)

Prince Harry: Mr. Edward Lane Fox    (KP)

Prince Andrew: Mrs. Amanda Thirsk     (BP)

Prince Edward & Sophie: Mr. Tim Roberts    (BP)

Princess Anne: Captain Nick Wright     (BP)

Buckingham Palace
London SW1A 1AA 

Clarence House
London SW1A 1BA

Kensington Palace
London W8 4PU

For whatever reason you are writing to a royal, there is a certain person whose job it is to deal with that. Writing to the appropriate person, ensures you get the appropriate response.  

There are times when it would be more appropriate to address your letter to a different member of the Royal's household (E.g. Interview request should be directed to a Press Secretary).  Or if you want information about a certain Household Department, Royal Collection, Royal Residence, etc. you should contact them directly.

I would always recommend checking out the Royal's Official Website to find out more specifics.

If you ever can't find a Royal's Private Secretary's name, you can always address your letter to "The Private Secretary of ____".

Note: A letter addressed to a Royal, doesn't actually go directly to the Royal. Their letters are answered by a team of people who deal with the general correspondences. These people may not have the knowledge, authority or position to get or do whatever it is you are asking.

That is why it is best to address your letter to the Royal's Private Secretary or the appropriate member of the Royal's Household. Writing to that person is the best way to get the result you want.

What to Write: Your letter should be very professional, business-like, and more formal than a personal letter. You should keep it concise, no more than a page at length. If you want to include a pamphlet with more information about your charity, or organization, you can. You can also direct the reader to your website for more information.

We have a lot of general advice on writing letters to royals here. It is more for writing Personal Letters, but most of the information still applies. Some other useful tips are:
  • State in your Opening Paragraph why you are writing, Both
    • What you hope to get out of this letter
    • Why you have chosen to write to this Royal
  • Speak positively about your Company, Organization or Charity and the work that it does.
    • State why your Company, Organization or Charity is unique and different from others. 
  • State your position (e.g. Founder, President, Volunteer)
  • Be courteous and respectful (& realize you may not get the response you were hoping for).
  • Type your letter, but be sure to handwrite your signature
  • Be sure to include your return address on both your envelope and letter.
Are you a Charity/Organization hoping to get a Royal Patronage?

Royals do occasionally take on new patronages. You should write to their Private Secretary. They vet all the Charities and Organizations before forwarding on the appropriate/interesting ones to be considered for Patronage.

You can find out more about the process for Suggesting a Patronage to BRF (British Royal Family) here.

Are you inviting a Royal for a Visit?

Royals do accept invitations to visit for a special occasion or historic event. A Royal's schedule is often made far in advance, so your invitation should be sent 6 months in advance, a year if you would like them to attend on a specific date.

Royal tours abroad often begin the planning process over a year in advance.

If there is a specific Royal you wish to visit, it is best to write directly to that Royal's Private Secretary. They will know the Royal's schedule and if this visit will be of interest.

If you are based in the UK and looking for ANY British Royal to attend, it is best to contact your local Lord Lieutenant. They coordinate Royal visits to the area and will know if any royals are planning to be in that area during that time. They are also in regular contact with Buckingham Palace and advise the Palace on which events in their region deserves Royal Attention. The Palace can then see if any Royals are available and interested in attending.

Are you sending a gift/freebie?

The Royals have strict rules on accepting gifts. There are certain instances when Royals are/are not allowed to accept gifts. Even on Special Occasions, like Births and Weddings, the same rules apply. On these occasions, Royals typically suggest that well-wishers donate to charity in lieu of gifts. If you are unsure about whether or not your gift can be accepted, feel free to still send it and possibly mention that "If (The Royal) can not accept the gift, feel free to forward it on to an appropriate charity."

You can read more about the BRF's Rules for accepting gifts here.

What to expect in response:

Although you may write to a specific person, your reply may come from another member of the Royal's staff. The more important royals have Assistant/Deputy Private Secretaries and a number of other people who will often reply to letters. Don't worry if you receive a reply from someone you didn't expect. It could be the Principal Private Secretary was too busy to give your letter the proper attention, or the person replying may be better equipped to answer your letter.

Never expect a personal reply from a Royal. Remember Royals get thousands of letters each year from both the public as well as companies, organizations, and charities. They do try to ensure everyone gets a response, but it may not be the response you were expecting/hoping for.

Back to Writing to the Royals - Main Page

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