Never-Before-Seen Photos of the Royal Family in the '80s Resurface as the Queen Returns to Sandringham

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Queen Elizabeth
Queen Elizabeth

SWNS Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth with family

As Queen Elizabeth returns to Sandringham and reflects on the deaths of her father and husband, an amateur photographer's family shared newly resurfaced shots of a happier time in Norfolk.

The family of Edward Jackson, who lived near the monarch's Sandringham estate in King's Lynn and snapped photos of the royals over the years, uncovered his pictures following his death in November. They are submitting the photographs to Kensington Palace's appeal for amateur snaps of the royal family to celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee.

One photo, taken on Christmas 1988, shows the royals gathered outside St. Mary Magdalene Church. Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip are surrounded by some of their grandchildren, including a young Prince William and Zara Phillips, while Princess Diana and Sarah Ferguson chat to one side.

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On the same day, Edwards also captured Princess Diana — sporting a black coat with blue lapel and a matching hat featuring a blue feather — looking over her shoulder while walking side-by-side with Fergie, as the Duchess of York is affectionately known.

Princess DIana
Princess DIana

SWNS Princess Diana

In another photo believed to have been taken in 1989, a pink-clad Queen Elizabeth smiles while looking behind her, with a profile of Prince Philip slightly out of focus in the foreground.

"My uncle always had two cameras hanging around his neck just in case one went wrong. He was always on the lookout for a good shot," Jackson's nephew Stephen Jackson said, according to the Daily Mail. "If Edward was still here he definitely would have sent some in. We've picked half a dozen to send through."

Queen Elizabeth
Queen Elizabeth

SWNS Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip

The monarch, 95, flew to Sandringham by helicopter on Sunday.

The Queen typically stays at her estate in Norfolk starting in late December, when the royal family comes together to celebrate Christmas. However, she decided to spend the holiday at Windsor Castle accompanied by Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall amid the rise in COVID-19 cases in the U.K.

Queen Elizabeth traditionally stays until after Feb. 6, the anniversary of the day her father died and she became monarch. King George VI died on the Sandringham estate while his daughter and Prince Philip were in Kenya on tour. His last public appearance was seeing the couple off at the airport on Jan. 31.

Prince Charles sitting on a statue watched by King George VI, Princess Elizabeth, the Duke of Edinburgh, Princess Margaret and Queen Elizabeth
Prince Charles sitting on a statue watched by King George VI, Princess Elizabeth, the Duke of Edinburgh, Princess Margaret and Queen Elizabeth

PA Images/Getty King George VI, Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip and Prince Charles

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The monarch is reportedly staying at Wood Farm, the cottage on Sandringham Estate where Prince Philip, who died in April at age 99, largely lived before he headed to Windsor Castle at the start of the pandemic to isolate alongside his wife.