Angela Kelly, the Queen’s right-hand woman, announced in her book, “The Other Side of the Coin. The Queen, the Dresser and the Wardrobe”, that Her Majesty would not buy any new furs. Yet, as reported by The Telegraph, Buckingham Palace spokesperson made clear that Queen Elizabeth might keep wearing the furs she currently has; on top of that, for sure she will not give up the ceremonial ones.
The British Fur Trade Association’s reproach
“Fur is one of the most sustainable and durable natural products – pointed out Giles Roca, managing director of the British Fur Trade Association – in contrast with plastic fake alternative options”. While participating in Today programme, on BBC Radio 4, Roca illustrated his standpoint: “Synthetic furs, fake furs and plastic furs are actually much more detrimental to environment compared to natural furs”.
Royal Guards and bearskin hats
Queen Elizabeth is going to wear furs then. Likewise, Buckingham Palace royal guards are not planning to turn to fur-free either. Department of Defence spoke out about the issue: “There are no current plans to replace bear skins used as ceremonial headgear”, they commented, as reported by Fashion United.
A sustainable headgear
Hats worn by the Royal Guard, 45 centimetres tall in order to scare enemies, have been traditionally manufactured by making use of skin taken from Canadian black bears. “They kill animals in full compliance with bear population control actions, not for hats – pointed out British Minister of Defence –. Since we purchase bear skins at the auction sales in Canada, with little notice, price may be different”. The Ministry itself made public, at the beginning of 2016, they have bought, since 2008, 925 bearskin hats, for which they paid around 880,000 British pounds (that is, about 1 million euros). They also purchased 55 rabbit fur hats, worth 25,299 pounds, and 7 fox fur hats, worth 5,499 pounds. They repeatedly tested an artificial alternative option, which did not prove successful though.