Wednesday, 21 March 2018

First Look: Kate in Green for Early Years Symposium

The Duchess of Cambridge has just arrived to convene a symposium on the importance of early intervention to provide solid social and emotional platforms for children in their early years, helping them to become healthier and more resilient later in life. She will also deliver a speech. Kate's wearing bespoke Jenny Packham.

We'll have a full post shortly.

Saturday, 17 March 2018

UPDATED: Elegant Kate in Green Catherine Walker for St Patrick's Day!

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited the 1st Battalion Irish Guards for the St Patrick's Day Parade at Cavalry Barracks, Hounslow this morning.

St Patrick's Day is very much a favourite royal event among readers and always one which produces great photos.

Prince William is colonel of the regiment, which he was made in May 2011; it was his first honorary position in the army. Her Majesty the Queen is Colonel in Chief of the regiment. As you all remember, the Prince opted to wear the Irish Guards tunic for the royal wedding.

The Duchess was festive in green.

Three hundred and fifty soldiers marched onto the Parade Square at Cavalry Barracks.

They were accompanied by their mascot Domhnall.

Kate presented shamrock to officers and warrant officers, who in turn issued it along the ranks.

The Duchess chatted to officers.

The Duchess enjoys a laugh with the Commanding Officer Irish Guards Lt Col Jonathan Palmer.

Kate presented shamrock to mascot Domhnall.

Photos of Kate and Domhnall have become a staple over the years, and remain my favourite from the day!

A video from KP.

1st Battalion Irish Guards trooped its colour at the Queen’s Birthday Parade in June 2016 before returning to their primary role of light infantry. Exercises in Otterburn and Sennybridge followed in the autumn, in preparation for two overseas deployments.

In November, Number 1 Company travelled to the Falkland Islands for three months, conducting training and patrolling across the islands. Number 2 Company flew to Thailand for a month, where they took part in a jungle exercise with the Royal Thai Army – the first UK-Thai joint exercise for over 20 years.

In the New Year, the battalion returned to public duties, notably conducting the Changing of the Guard in the heavy snow of Storm Emma.

I remember seeing this photo during the worst of the 'Beast from the East'; Domhnall did his bit to keep the show going despite the weather.

The Duke and Duchess watching the parade.

A great shot of William and Kate.

The parade concluded with a march-past.

Prince William took the salute.

More on the tradition inaugurated by Queen Alexandra, wife of King Edward VII, in 1901 when a decree stated:

'Her Majesty the Queen is pleased to order that in future, upon St. Patrick's Day, all ranks of her Irish regiments shall wear, as a distinction, a sprig of shamrock in their head dress to commemorate the gallantry of her Irish soldiers during the recent battles in South Africa.'

The tradition has become synonymous with a number of royals since, most notably the Queen Mother, who had a long affiliation and love for the Irish Guards after attending the annual military parade for the first time in 1927. It wasn't until 1964 she started to present the Royal Shamrock to the Battalion, describing it as a "great pleasure which has enabled me to forge a link with the regiment I greatly cherish". The regiment supplied the pallbearers for her funeral in 2002.

In recent years the tradition has been continued by Kate.

Kate was given a lovely posy by two little girls.

The Duke and Duchess met members of the regiment before sitting for official officers' and sergeants’ mess photographs.

 There was snowfall throughout the morning which appears to have reemerged during the official photos.

The Irish Guards’ described the event as "a happy family day for all participants".

Afterwards they met soldiers and their families.

William and Kate chatting with officers.

Finally, the Duke and Duchess visited the Guardsmen's Lunch where the longest-serving guardsman in the battalion proposed a toast to the royals.

More from the Mail Online:

'The longest-serving guardsman of the battalion, Stephen Williams declared a toast to the Duke and Duchess for a second year in a row at the mess hall and thanked the Duchess for the shamrocks.
The 30-year-old revealed the Royal couple 'felt sorry' for him and his colleagues out in the elements.
He said: 'I thought it went well, I was very proud to do it on behalf on the battalion. They said they recognised me from last year which is a good thing. I've been here for 10 years so the most senior person does it every year. It's the first time we've had snow on the parade, usually it's a warm day - what was it, -3C outside? 'They said they felt the cold and felt sorry for us.'

A video from the toast.

A refresher of Kate's St Patrick's Day looks over the years.

The Duchess was perfectly attired for the occasion in the green Catherine Walker coat she debuted in Sweden in January. Kate looked effortlessly elegant at the parade; it's a beautifully crafted coat, which was likely designed with St Patrick's Day in mind.

Kate accessorised her coat with a faux fur collar and faux fur cuffs from Troy London. The brand was set up by Rosie Van Cutsem and her sister Lucia Ruck Keene. Rosie's husband William Van Cutsem is one of Prince William's oldest friends and godfather to Prince George.

The Duchess wore her Gina Foster Meribel hat. The milliner describes the hat as "a hard shell beret with a large bow".

Kate also sported the hat for St Patrick's Day in 2014.

Kate wore her black Tod's suede pumps.

Kate completed the look with her Kiki McDonough "Special Edition Green Tourmaline, Green Amethyst and Diamond Earrings". It is thought they were speically made to the celebrate the birth of Princess Charlotte.

Once again, the Duchess wore the Irish Guards gold shamrock brooch this year. The three-leaf brooch which has been worn by the Queen Mother and Princess Anne, belongs to the regiment and they determine to whom it be loaned. Kate also wore a sprig of shamrock on her lapel.

And a closer look at Kate's updo.

The Irish Guards sent their greetings for the day (with a little reference to the England v Ireland rugby match taking place this afternoon).

Kate was glowing at the event, it's always a fun one of the calendar. A very Happy St Patrick's Day to all celebrating!


Also today, we have news of several interesting engagements announced on Wednesday and Thursday. I thought Kate might wrap up appearances after today, but that is not the case. Emily Andrews recently reported Kate is due around 23rd of April; that date is beginning to make sense as time presses on. The events celebrating the Commonwealth will coincide with appearances leading up to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting next month.

21 March - The Duchess of Cambridge will convene a symposium on the importance of early intervention to provide solid social and emotional platforms for children in their early years, helping them to become healthier and more resilient later in life.
22 March - The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will undertake engagements celebrating the Commonwealth. They will meet athletes supported by SportsAid, some of whom aim to compete in the 2022 Commonwealth Games, and help to prepare a Commonwealth Big Lunch at St Luke's Trust.

We'll see you on Wednesday!

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