With away on a six-week military mission, , does some heavy digging at a ceremonial tree planting for the opening of the East Anglia Children’s Hospice at the Treehouse center in Ipswich, outside London, on March 19. “What you have all achieved is extraordinary,” the new royal said during her first public speech as a duchess.
In a fittingly festive Emilia Wickstead frock, Kate pays a special St. Patrick’s Day visit to the Irish Guards, passing out shamrocks to officers of the guard’s 1st Battalion – a tradition started by her husband’s great-grandmother, the Queen Mother.
Joining royal bestie Queen Elizabeth II, Kate shares a knowing glance with Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, during a March 1 appearance at a tea party marking the regeneration of London’s Piccadilly neighborhood.
Inside the Fortnum & Mason food store, Camilla and Kate take in many of the posh products, even tasting some chocolates. “Gosh, it is very sweet,” the younger duchess said while biting into a crystallized rose petal. “I will definitely try that.”
A perpetual crowd pleaser, Kate is greeted by giddy schoolchildren waving British union flags during a Feb. 21 visit to the Art Room facility at Rose Hill Primary School, located in an economically disadvantaged section of Oxford. “She is an independent, highly-intelligent young woman who wants to make a difference,” says Art Room’s founder-director Juli Beattie.
With her prince away on Valentine’s Day (he did send a card and flowers!), Kate has a drink at the Brink, an alcohol-free bar supported by one of her chosen charities Action on Addiction. During her visit, an 8-year-old admirer, Jaqson Johnston-Lynch, gives her some roses and a message, “I am sorry Prince William cannot be here.”
While her husband is 7,500 miles away in the Falkland Islands for work, embarks on her first solo public engagement with a Feb. 8 visit to one of her chosen charities, London’s National Portrait Gallery, where she took a tour with the museum’s director Sandy Nairne and curator Sarah Howgate.