President Xi Jinping visited the UK in 2015 and both the UK and China hailed the event as “successful”. Mr Xi and his wife Peng Liyuan were honoured with a state banquet at Buckingham Palace with the Queen. However, Her Majesty was caught on camera at a Buckingham Palace garden party in 2016 discussing the Chinese contingent’s “extraordinary” treatment of the British Ambassador to China.
The video shows the monarch being introduced to Metropolitan Police Commander Lucy D’Orsi, who oversaw the security during President Xi’s visit.
After hearing that the senior police officer was the Gold Commander during the visit, the Queen responded: “Oh, bad luck.”
Commander D’Orsi told the Queen: “I was the Gold Commander, so I’m not sure whether you knew, but it was quite a testing time.”
The Queen replied: “I did.”
The police officer continued: “It was at the point they walked out of Lancaster House and told me that the trip was off, that I felt…”
Then, the royal said: “They were very rude to the ambassador.”
Ms D’Orsi confirmed: “They were. Barbara, she was with me and they walked out on both of us.”
The Queen, dressed in pink and carrying a pink umbrella, turned to the Commander’s mother and exclaimed: “Extraordinary!”
This garden party exchange was filmed by a cameraman who covers the palace for UK broadcasters and published on the BBC website.
A Buckingham Palace spokesman said: “We do not comment on the Queen’s private conversations.
“However, the Chinese State Visit was extremely successful and all parties worked closely to ensure it proceeded smoothly.”
Chinese officials in London and Beijing also described the visit as a “success”.
However, Phillip Hammond, who was Foreign Secretary at the time, admitted that “at times it got a bit stressful on both sides”.
Commander D’Orsi said it was “rewarding” to be thanked by the Queen for her work and said the monarch had chatted to her mother about being grandmothers.
A Metropolitan Police spokesman also said they were not prepared to discuss a private conversation.
A Chinese government spokesman said the trip started a “Golden Era” of relations between the two nations, but refused to say whether that era continued after the latest news.