Many of Queen’s servants turning to Tinder, Grindr to meet local people
By Patrick Vaillancourt, Senior Columnist
Security at the British Royal houses across the United Kingdom has been tightened in response to reports released last week that servants in the royal houses are inviting guests to stay with them overnight.
Royal servants are apparently turning to “hook-up” apps such as Grindr and Tinder to unwind after a tiring day of serving the British monarch. The demands of a position as a royal servant mean that, for the most part, the servants reside in quarters near Buckingham Palace, if not in the palace itself.
There are approximately 800 staffers, who are housed at the Royal Mews and at St. James Palace, only a few hundred metres away from the Queen’s official London residence.
Staffers have previously enjoyed a fair amount of freedom to invite family and friends, even spouses and partners, to their quarters within palace walls. Palace security has long-maintained a tradition of not vetting or screening the guests of staffers. However, security officials have grown increasingly concerned about overnight guests who are unfamiliar to staffers, such as those one would meet in an unconventional setting—in this case online.
Tinder is a geosocial network which allows a user to meet local men or women as potential love interests, but has been heavily criticized for promoting casual sex among virtual strangers. Grindr follows the same principle as Tinder, but is reserved for men who are gay, bi-sexual, or curious.
One unnamed palace source told the Daily Mail last week, “There are real and serious security concerns at Buckingham Palace about members of staff use of dating apps such as Tinder, which can be rather sleazy.”
The source went on to say that police working security for Buckingham Palace are “particularly unhappy about the number of guests of servants staying overnight, especially when they have only just met on Tinder.”
Dai Davies, former chief superintendent and the former head of the Royal protection service, told the Daily Mail that the presence of these unchecked guests “makes a complete mockery of the security structure” at the Royal household. Davies believes that security officials will be more vigilant in vetting the guests of royal servants, especially since the United Kingdom is under the second-highest terrorism threat alert level.
There has been no official comment from Buckingham Palace or the Queen, but a palace spokesperson has suggested that there is a specific protocol staffers must follow in inviting guests to their quarters, which includes signing guests in and out.