A Man With a Crossbow Broke into Windsor While the Queen Celebrated Christmas

Police apprehended him and no one was injured.

queen elizabeth
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Well, yikes. Police have arrested a man who broke onto the private grounds of Windsor, reportedly wielding a crossbow, as the Queen was present on the grounds celebrating Christmas. The man has not been identified, but police have described him as a 19-year-old from Southampton, according to the Telegraph.

The intruder was reportedly discovered when he was seen scaling the fence of the outer perimeter, according to the Mirror, and in a move that sounds straight out of a cartoon, he may have accessed the site using a rope ladder, since the grounds are publicly inaccessible. The man was arrested on suspicion of possession of an offensive weapon and breach or trespass of a protected site around 8:30am Christmas morning, as the Queen was inside celebrating Christmas. 

In a comment, the Thames Valley Police Superintendent said that police responded within moments of the man entering the grounds, and he was unable to access any buildings. The police refused to comment on the nature of the “offensive weapon” (though it was reportedly the crossbow) and the investigation is ongoing, but they do not believe the man poses a threat to the public at large.

This isn’t the first time recently that the Queen's safety was jeopardized by an intruder. In 2019, a man climbed over the front gates of Buckingham Palace and started banging on the front doors as the Queen slept just yards away, according to Express UK. In that instance, police responded within four minutes. 

This is the third attempted break-in at Windsor this year, including two within days of each other in April, said the publication. One of the break-ins involved a woman who claimed to be Prince Andrew’s fiancee, and was allowed entry into Andrew’s Royal Lodge and other areas of the house for nearly an hour before police stopped her. 

However, this latest incident begs questions about the Queen’s security while at Windsor. According to Dai Davies, the head of the royal protection unit (per the Mirror), “It does seem that Windsor is having an issue with intruders of late and those in charge need to get to the bottom of it straight away before something more sinister comes to pass.”

Maybe the Queen should get a Ring or something?