On the Day 4 of Pakistan visit, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge headed to the vibrant and colourful city of Pakistan – Lahore. The visit was a contrast to their yesterday’s Chitral visit where they highlighted the climate change issue and experienced the effects of Global warming on Glacier. Lahore is one of Pakistan’s most socially liberal, progressive, and cosmopolitan cities.
— Simon Perry (@SPerryPeoplemag) October 17, 2019
In Lahore, the royal couple was welcomed by the Governor Choudhary Mohammad Sarwar and Chief Minister of Punjab Sardar Usman Buzdar at Lahore airport along with the British High Commissioner Thomas Drew.
There is a saying about Lahore, “If you have not seen Lahore while visiting Pakistan – you might have not visited the country at all”, so William and Catherine’s agenda had a special day dedicated to the heart of the country and its history- Lahore.
The second-most populous and one of Pakistan’s wealthiest city, the major tourist attraction Lahore, that was the home of Mughal and Sikh empire, is the capital of the Pakistani province Punjab.
Lahore was central to the independence movements of both India and Pakistan, with the city being the site of both the declaration of Indian Independence and the resolution calling for the establishment of Pakistan and experienced some of the worst riotings during the Partition period preceding Pakistan’s independence. Today Lahore exerts a strong cultural influence over Pakistan as foremost centre of Pakistan’s literary scene, home to leading universities, Pakistan’s film industry and major attractions including the Walled City, the famous Badshahi Mosque and Wazir Khan mosques and Sikh shrines. Lahore is also home to the Lahore Fort and Shalimar Gardens, both of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
The royal day began with a meeting with the Governor of Lahore. The Pakistani Governor gifted the couple a book about the Governor House Punjab and a handmade carpet.
Next stop was SOS Children’s Villages. Established in 1977, SOS Village is a private social welfare organization providing orphans and abandoned children a loving home and family. The organization aims to admit children who are complete orphans or social orphans through a standard admission policy. Social orphans are the result of the mother being remarried or having an incurable disease or mental illness and, as a consequence, being unable to provide for the children.
SOS villages provide quality alternative care for children who can no longer live with their parents, adequate care to families experiencing crisis or extreme hardship and help them stay together and protection to children and their families at the centre of our actions during humanitarian emergencies while protecting Children rights and help to inform communities and decision-makers about children’s rights. You can find more about SOS Village and its success here.
— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) October 17, 2019
Before attending a birthday party, William and Catherine held a private meeting with seven children who live in one of the boarding houses and their ‘house mother’. From the Telegraph’s report,
“It’s very nice to be here,” said the Duke. “My name is William…. I am called William. How old you?”
After asking each of the children’s ages, he asked one little boy: “How old do you think I am?” “Twenty one,” offered the child. I’ll take twenty one, that’s good!” he laughed. “I am a little bit older than that.”
SOS Village in Lahore is attached to a school, provides a home and family structure to over 150 young girls and boys, and promotes the development of children into happy, confident and resilient adults. Duke and Duchess of Cambridge joined a birthday party for Iman (12), Ibrahim (6), and Daniyal (8), that involve games, music and traditional Pakistani cakes.
They were given finger puppets for a storytelling session. Duke of Cambridge tried his hand birthday cake decoration while Duchess was looking amused.
Earlier, the couple visited @soschildrenpk where Kate championed the role of women and mothers in hwr first speech of the tour: Here, women who were once vulnerable, now play the most vital of roles as mothers and it is most heartening to see that you are not doing this alone.” pic.twitter.com/JlLPgD2kIW
— Roya Nikkhah (@RoyaNikkhah) October 17, 2019
Duchess whose public life focus is early year intervention, Children and family mental health gave her first speech of the tour and used few words of Urdu. People’s shared,
“Assalam O Alaikum,” she said. “Iman, Ibrahim aur Daniyal apni salgirah pur bulanay ka bohat shukria.” (Translation: “Hello. Peace be upon you. Iman, Ibrahim and Daniyal, thank you for inviting us to your birthday celebration.”)
Bits of Catherine’s speech from Telegraph’s report,
“Being here in Pakistan this week, William and I have seen on several occasions how family is at the heart of your culture,” she said. Parents, children, aunts, uncles, grandparents all play important roles – you have reminded us exactly what family means. You have shown us too that it is not simply a term that describes the relationship between blood relatives. Instead, it describes those special bonds we share with those who make us feel safe and supported. It is the quality of those relationships that matters. Earlier this year I talked about the fact that it takes a village to raise a child. The village we have seen here today is the best representation of that ideal that I could have possibly imagined.
Together as a village you are transforming children’s lives and providing them with strong foundations to support all their families. You have created a home, where children are given the love, protection, and support that will enable them to have a fairer chance in life. Here, women who were once vulnerable, now play the most vital of roles as mothers and it is most heartening to see that you are not doing this alone.”
William and Catherine’s tours are incomplete without a sport-related engagement. Today the royal couple will be visiting a National Cricket Academy.
Cricket is the most loved sport in Pakistan and its neighbouring country India. Duke and Duchess once again took the cricket bat in their hands and played a match with children who are participating in the British Council’s DOSTI (Friendship) programme umpired by famous Pakistani Cricketers Waqar Younis.
The lovingly competitive couple enjoyed their play out in which Duke scored six while Duchess was caught out twice.
The programme promotes sport as an integral part of child development and encourages social integration, increased self-esteem, and the development of important life skills in children. They also met Hasan Ali, Azhar Ali, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Sana Mir, Urooj Mumtaz and Ayesha Zafar.
William and Catherine were presented with cricket bats for their three kids Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis. Chris Ship tweeted that at the time of gifting the presenter joked, “You might apologise to Prince Louis,’ they were told. ‘His bat is bigger than he is.”
Before leaving the royal couple stood for a group photograph and signed the visitor’s book.
A beautiful shot of the royal couple shared by the Palace.
This lovely video gives a glimpse of the visit.
For the day, Duchess of Cambridge wore white Shalwar kameez by Gul Ahmed and a shawl by Maheen Khan.
Gule Ahmed is a Karachi based textile company that goes back to the early 1900s. Catherine was wearing a custom made white embroidered kurta with a straight shalwar. The kurta had Pakistan’s national flower Jasmine machine-embroidered on it and small silver buttons at the front.
Duchess paired the look with a new pair of d’Orsay style brown suede pumps. She wore J. Crew Lucie suede pumps. Thanks to Lottie Verrier on Twitter for the id. The £244 pumps had suede upper and leather lining. They come in three colours –black, Ashen brown and dark Pacific.
For the cricket academy visit, Duchess changed her shoes to a new pair of white plimsolls shoes. CosimaSchroeter on Twitter and littleduchess252018 on Instagram suggested that Catherine was wearing Hampton Canvas Plum White Plimsolls. The $37 plimsolls are described as, ” Stylish ‘retro’ canvas shoe by Hampton Classics. Elasticated for ease and comfort with three eyelets detailing. Hand-finished natural rubber sole.” They are available in 12 colourways.
Catherine was carrying her Mulberry Bayswater Clutch in buttercream colourway debuted in 2016 during India tour. She owns in the clutch three different shades – black, buttercream and Conker.
Next the couple will visit Iconic Badshahi Mosque and Shaukat Khanum Hospital.