Category Archives: Kate about town

Kate visits the scouts

In January 2012 it was announced that Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, had become a volunteer of the Scouting Association. Although it is listed under her patronages on her official website, she is neither a patron nor president. The Queen is honorary Patron of Scouts UK and the Duke of Kent is honorary president.

Kate was part of the Brownies as a child and she has reportedly been an active volunteer with the Scout Association behind the scenes, volunteering her time privately with groups in North Wales and elsewhere. She has been seen on a few public occasions demonstrating scouting skills. During a 2012 visit to Vernon Park, Nottingham, she assisted, in skirt and heels, with putting up a tent during a scouting demonstration. In July 2012 she hosted an outdoor scouting event – beach barbecue and fishing lesson in Anglesey, Wales.

This is her most high profile engagement for the Scouts. According to the Scouting website:

The Duchess will attend the event together with around 20 other adult volunteers, learning new skills that will support her in her role as an occasional helper at her local Scout Group.

Possibly as a result of the criticism for the expense in using a helicopter for a previous engagement, Catherine took a first class 2 hour train ride to arrive at this engagement. She wore the red, white and blue UK adult scout scarf, primarily worn by Scouts travelling abroad. During her visit she got a tour of the facilities, learnt how to light a fire using a flint, cook unleavened dough twists over the campfire while sharing camaraderie with her fellow volunteers.

The Scouting association has an award-winning Volunteer training program; recognized with a National Training Award from UK Skills.

One of the Duchess of Cambridge’s areas of focus for her patronages is ‘helping children and young people to build their skills, confidence and aspirations’ as well as promoting outdoor activity. The Scouting association does just that by offering participants fun and adventure via hundreds of enriching activities.

For more information, visit the Scout Association website.


Only Kate can give The Queen second billing

This morning Kate surprised many royal watchers by accompanying the Queen and Prince Philip to Bakers Street Station to mark the 150th anniversary of the London underground. This wasn’t the only royal visit in celebration. In January, Prince Charles accompanied by the Duchess of Cornwall marked the anniversary by taking his first tube ride in 33 years.

This was the Queen’s first major public engagement since March 1st, after suffering from gastroenteritis. It was also noted that this is the third engagement that the Kate has accompanied the Queen on. Prince Philip, who accompanied both women, probably wasn’t surprised to take third place on this visit.

The Queen has taken ‘the Tube’ as it is referred to in the UK (in Canada it is called the Subway) on a few occasions. Accompanied by her sister, Princess Margaret and governess, Marion Crawford, she took a ride in May 1939, four months after it opened. it must have been a novelty for the young princesses at the time. She has made a handful of visits since then. In 1969 she opened the Victoria Line and in 1977 she unveiled the Piccadilly link to Heathrow airport.

During the Queen’s last visit in 2010, she went to Aldgate Underground station to unveil a plaque commemorating the July 7th bombings and she was presented with a London underground sign for Buckingham Palace. On this visit, the royal party viewed a restored 1892 underground coach, and Catherine and Prince Philip watched the Queen unveil a plaque naming the train ‘Queen Elizabeth II’. Nice to know that if someone refuses to give up a seat for her and asks ‘does this train have your name on it?’ she can reply, ‘why yes, it does!’

However, the tube is no novelty for Kate. Nostalgically revealing, ‘I used to use the Tube on a regular basis. I miss travelling on the Tube.’ During the visit Catherine was presented with an underground badge ‘Baby on Board’. The button’s purpose ‘saves men the embarrassment of having to guess if a woman is pregnant.’

It was nice to see Kate ramping up her engagements and growing more comfortable in her royal role. Upon receiving the Baby on Board button jokingly replied, “I’ll make sure I wear it at home.”

Baker Street Visit

Image via British Monarchy Flickr

The Return of Uncle Gary

Catherine’s controversial uncle Gary Goldsmith has returned, this time to sing her praises. Kate Middleton’s Uncle speaks out

Gary Goldsmith is the younger brother of Carole Middleton, Kate’s mother. He is famously viewed by the public as the black sheep of the family and with this new interview for Hello! it is likely to cement that view. Although I have only read a few excerpts of the interview, knowing Hello! reputation for never saying anything negative about anyone, it’s unlikely that there is anything particularly harmful to Kate. The same cannot be said for his reputation and several royal commentators have accused him of cashing in on his royal connections. His view of this interview is that he is ‘setting the record straight’.

There is no denying that he is eccentric. He named his home in Ibiza La Maison de Bang Bang (French slang for the House of Sex). The five bedroom villa is reportedly on the market for £5.6million. He came to the public’s attention when he was caught by News of the World undercover reporters snorting cocaine and offering advice on meeting prostitutes. In this new interview he credits himself with bringing William and Kate together after their brief split in 2007 and expresses a desire to be a part of Baby Cambridge’s upbringing.

Unsurprisingly, he is also reportedly planning to write his autobiography. Should he do so, any remote chance of playing a role in the royal baby’s upbringing is likely to become even more remote.

William and Kate visit Child Bereavement UK

Child Bereavement UK
Image via British Monarchy Flickr

On March 19th William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, visited Child Bereavement UK headquarters near High Wycombe in Buckinghamshire. The Child Bereavement UK charity was launched by Diana, Princess of Wales in 1994.

During a 2009 visit to launch the charity’s Mother’s Day campaign, Prince William, who has been patron of Child Bereavement UK since 2009, famously made a rare public comment about losing his mother, Diana, Princess of Wales.

‘Never being able to say the word “Mummy” again in your life sounds like a small thing. However, for many, including me, it’s now really just a word – hollow and evoking only memories.’

In October 2011, he raised more than £600,000 for the organisation at a fundraiser held in St James’s Palace.

The mandate of Child Bereavement UK is:

We support families and educate professionals both when a baby or child of any age dies or is dying, or when a child is facing bereavement

During this visit William and Kate visited with staff as well as families who have lost a child.  Something which must be particularly poignant as the couple are expecting their first child in July.

For more information on this charity, visit Child Bereavement UK website.

Award for best grate-related pun in a Kate article headline

As you may have heard, William and Kate attended a St Patrick’s day at Aldershot Barracks where Catherine presented shamrocks to the 1st Battalion Irish Guards . Incidently a century-old tradition that Queen Alexandra, consort of King Edward VII started it in 1901.

The late Queen Mother famously carried out this duty for many years and now it looks as though this duty has been delegated to Catherine.

However, even bigger news than continuing a royal tradition! No, not wearing the same outfit as last year, although that was pretty close. Nor discussing her preference for a boy rather than a girl (That is the backup story once this one fades) No, Catherine got her high heel stuck, for mere seconds, in a grate! Cue the pun-headlines! I present the contenders for best grate related pun in a Kate article title.

All heel, Catherine the grate

Catherine’s grate escape

Duchess suffers St Patrick’s ‘wardrobe malfunction’ – Rather misleading headline, don’t you think?

Kate puts a foot wrong, for once

The Duchess puts her foot in it

Wills & Grate

Duchess of Cambridge and the perils of high heels – While not a pun title, it is nice that the Telegraph is so concerned, isn’t it?

I personally think that ‘All heel, Catherine the grate’ is the best one. Followed by Kate puts a foot wrong, for once.

The Duchess speaks!

Posted by Marilyn

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge made her first official speech as a royal. What do you think?