Well-spoken but always outspoken, Lady Colin Campbell certainly knows a thing or two about being posh.
On top of being Princess Diana’s biographer, she lives in a castle and owns five tiaras.
The I’m a Celebrity contestant even quipped during a Bushtucker Trial: “I wish I’d known it was food, I would have worn my pearls.”
Curious to know if your Christmas traditions would measure up to Lady C’s impeccable standards?
Take our quiz to find out . . .
How should one decorate one’s Christmas tree?
1 Traditional candles.
2 Colour co-ordinated by professionals.
3 Mismatching baubles and coloured lights.
Lady C says : 3 I always decorate my Christmas trees myself with decorations that are many years old. Good decorations cost an absolute fortune.
They are things that you keep from generation to generation. It goes without saying the tree – which should come down on the ninth day of Christmas – must be real.
Avoid show snow and white spray. Not elegant. Coloured lights are desirable.
It should look like the family have decorated it, whether they have or not! Never candles. That’s just stupid.
Anybody who owns a castle will not be able to validate their house insurance if they use candles.
What decorations on the exterior?
1 A wreath on the door.
2 Full flashing anatomical snowman.
3 Tasteful lights in a tree in the garden.
Lady C says: 1 I think exterior decorations are a bit much. A Christmas wreath is all I think one should have and it should usually be red.
What is the correct etiquette for sending Christmas cards?
1 Life is stressful enough, why bother?
2 Sent second class to arrive early December. Parsimonious and prompt.
3 An all singing and dancing e-card
Lady C says: 1 or 3 I haven’t sent Christmas cards since the early 90s.
I got to about 400 cards and I realised it was crazy. I think an e-card is very acceptable.
It’s the thought that counts. Only stick-in-the-muds and pretentious pifflers would think the world mustn’t progress.
Ideally, when should you open your Christmas presents?
1 Christmas Eve, like the Royal Family
2 Ripped open first thing in the morning.
3 After Christmas dinner – show some restraint!
Lady C says: 2 In Germany they may open presents on Christmas Eve.
But I have very little German blood in me, therefore I open them on Christmas morning. There’s no waiting around.
When my children were young they would come down early and open them straightaway.
It was a joy to see their faces. Saying you should wait to open them is like saying it would be vulgar to have an orgasm.
It’s pretentiousness to the point of ridiculousness.”
Drinks . . . what should be the first festive tipple of the day?
2 Bucks Fizz
Lady C says: 1 I always go straight to champagne . Orange juice makes it too acidic.
What should one have for breakfast on Christmas morning?
1 Full English Breakfast
2 Smoked salmon and scrambled egg
3 Coffee and a fag
Lady C says: 1 We always have bacon, eggs, mushrooms. A proper traditional English breakfast.
Smoked salmon and scrambled egg are all very well at three o’clock in the morning after an evening out, but at nine or ten o’clock in the morning, they are a bit chi chi.
When is the right time to go to church at Christmas?
1 Christmas morning, like the Queen. Christmas Day is for religion.
2 Midnight mass in one’s own chapel
3 The pub isn’t open until midday!
Lady C says: 2 When I am in town I like to go to the Brompton Oratory for midnight mass.
It is wonderful and magical. It’s nice to see people one knows. I absolutely adore it.
When I’m in the country it’s a little different. Once I have Castle Goring up and running I will have my midnight mass in my own chapel.
I think that will be heaven on earth.”
What drinks should be served with Christmas dinner?
1 White wine to go with white meat
2 Champagne and a glass of Diet Coke
Lady C says: 2 and 3 I don’t believe in the rule of colour matching wine to the meat.
That’s a very bourgeois convention and fortunately I live in a world where people do what they please.
Wine gives me a headache. I always drink champagne, a Diet Coke and a glass of tap water with ice. I do occasionally like a lager.
If anything, what should your guests bring with them?
1 Nothing, you shouldn’t imply your hosts can’t provide food and water.
2 Vintage champagne and foie gras
3 A supermarket shop
Lady C says: 2 The old rule was never take food and drink. This no longer applies to anyone who is truly well bred.
People like to bring wine, chocolates or a few bottles of champagne. I take foie gras, which everybody loves.
And always bring presents. The Princess of Wales would weigh herself down with gifts.
What outfit or outfits should one wear on Christmas Day?
1 Multiple outfit changes a la The Queen and the Royal Family
2 A onesie
3 A cashmere sweater
Lady C says: 3 What the Queen does, nobody else does. Constant breaking up of the party for outfit changes is only done in very formal households.
Other people are much more relaxed now than that. I would suggest a cashmere blouse, or woollen skirt suit.
A cut above denim would be strongly recommended. A onesie? That is not a serious option. You are at the table to dine, not to gorge oneself.
How much should one spend on Christmas presents?
1 Joke presents only a la the Royal Family.
2 As much as you can afford
3 Secret Santa
Lady C says: 2 A sense of humour is all very well, but farting cushions have no appeal to anyone over the age of 12.
One should not be mean and cheap but one shouldn’t make a spectacle of how generous you are nor show people up by being more generous than they could possibly be.
That is a vulgar display.
A lovely present doesn’t have to cost £50k, unless you can afford it. A lavish present is for a birthday, or trying to get someone into bed.
I’ve never done a Secret Santa and I don’t like the sound of it at all.
What time would you be serving your Christmas lunch?
1 Midday prompt
2 Christmas lunch? Surely you mean dinner?
3 Whenever the turkey is cooked
Lady C says: 2 Christmas dinner is the only time of the year when dinner is not in the evening. It should be served around 2ish.
I start with some champagne and foie gras to nibble on and then into the dinning room and have a proper traditional Christmas dinner.
What meat would you say is best served at Christmas lunch?
3 12 bird roast
Lady C says: 1 Turkey with chestnut stuffing and the trimmings. We have sweet potato for my Jamaican upbringing but I hate Brussels sprouts.
Goose is much palaver about very little. A 12 bird roast? Good luck to you but I can’t be bothered.
What accessories are appropriate at Christmas Dinner?
1 Flashing reindeer antlers
2 Diamond tiara
3 Pearl necklace
Lady C says: 3 I don’t think diamonds are appropriate at Christmas dinner. Pearls or other country jewellery are preferable.
Nice pearl earrings or at most a diamond on your left hand. Big diamonds dangling down are a bit flashy.
I’m all for a bit of sense of humour though, so reindeer antlers are fine for an impromptu joke.
Who serves Christmas dinner when you are hosting?
1 Footmen, under the watchful eye of a butler
2 Serve yourself, give the staff a day off
3 Long-suffering mum, hot and flustered from slaving over the cooker
Lady C says: 2 Unless you are in the third world, very rich and have lots of staff, the trend for the last 20 years has been to have an informal Christmas.
Give the staff a day off. Or get them to prepare everything a day ahead – and let everyone muck in for themselves.
What should one do after lunch has finished?
1 After lunch? Stay at the table, keep drinking!
2 One never misses the Queen’s Speech
3 Charades and Blind Man’s Buff.
Lady C says: 1 Last year we rose from the table at 3am after over 12 hours. Everybody judged it to have been a very successful Christmas dinner.
Play games if you want to but I like conversation. Charades isn’t quite up to the mark for me. We rarely manage to watch the Queen’s Speech.