Queen engaged in furious battle to get rid of rats using Palace as ‘personal playground’
Buckingham Palace has a 'rat problem' claims royal expert
The Royal Family has been attempting to rid Buckingham Palace of rats as far back as Queen Victoria, a historian has told Channel 5. Even as recent as 2019, Queen Elizabeth II was forced to order exterminators to the residence after rats were seen “tearing through”. Historian Professor Kate Williams spoke to Channel 5 documentary, ‘Secrets of the Royal Palaces’ about each senior royal’s “battle” against the pests.
She told viewers: “Buckingham Palace has definitely got a rat problem.
“When Queen Victoria moved to the Palace as Queen, she was shocked by how many rats there were.
“The rats treated Buckingham Palace like their own personal playground.
“When Victoria moved in, she tried to put a stop to it and really it ended up being a bit of a battle.”
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Professor Williams continued: “It got so bad that Victoria had to appoint her own rat catcher.
“This was Jack Black, who’s title was ‘V.R. Rat and Mole Catcher to Her Majesty’.
“He really was the rat whisperer, I think that Victoria really hoped that he would exterminate the rats for good.
“But I’m afraid he didn’t. The rats continued to plague Buckingham Palace throughout the reigns of all the monarchs.”
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The historian added: “In World War 2, the Queen Mother used to use the rats as target practice.
“She had a gun and she was practising for what to do in case Hitler invaded and she was kidnapped.
“She got the gun and she used to shoot the rats in the ruins of the crumbled part of Buckingham Palace.”
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Professor Williams told Channel 5: “So the rats have always been a problem throughout all of Buckingham Palace.
“As recently as 2019, exterminators were called in because rats were seen tearing through the royal kitchens.
“I honestly think that the best place to be in London if you’re a rat in Buckingham Palace.
“There’s lots of food, there’s lots of hidden places, there’s lots of holes because it’s such an old house.
“So rats have a good time at Buckingham Palace, and they historically always have.”
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