Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Imperial War Museum

Ahead of Armistice Day, the Duchess of Cambridge Catherine paid a surprise visit to the Imperial War Museum in  Lambeth, South London to view letters relating to the three brothers of her great-grandmother, all of whom fought and died in the First World War and learn more about her family’s participation in World War I. The visit also marked the Centenary of the End of World War I.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Kensington Palace

The letters are part of the Imperial War Museum’s Documents Archive, which provides a means to research, reflect and remember the extraordinary contribution and sacrifice made by so many families during the First World War.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Kensington Palace

Upon arrival at the Imperial War Museum, Catherine was welcomed by the Director-General of the museum Diane Lees and was taken to show the ‘Poppies: Weeping Window’ artwork by Paul Cummins and Tom Piper.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
The Royal Family

The Duchess first saw the piece in its original form when it was displayed at the Tower of London in 2014 as part of the Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red installation where 888,246 poppies were displayed, representing each life lost at the Front during the World War I. Since then the amazing artwork has travelled throughout the UK before finally residing at the Imperial War Museum permanently.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
The Royal Family

The Duchess took a short tour of the First World War Galleries and learns more about what her relatives would have experienced during their time on the front line.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Kensington Palace

Francis Martineau Lupton, The Duchess’s great-great-grandfather, had five children. His three sons Francis, Maurice and Lionel were all killed in action while serving during the First World War. The two youngest brothers, Captain Maurice Lupton and Lieutenant Lionel M Lupton went to France within 3 days of each other in 1915.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
The Royal Family

The eldest Lupton brother, Major Francis A Lupton fought with the 8th Battalion West Yorkshire Regiment in 1917. Sadly, each of the brothers was killed in action over a period of three years: Maurice in 1915, Lionel in 1916 and Francis in 1917.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Kensington Palace

Their sister Olive Christiana Middleton, nee Lupton, who worked as a nurse in the Voluntary Aid Detachment, is the Duchess of Cambridge’s great-grandmother. She married Lieutenant Richard Noel Middleton, who also corresponded with the family during the war. Olive and Noel Middleton were parents of Peter Middleton, Duchess’ grandfather and father of Michael Middleton (Catherine’s father).

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum

During the visit, The Duchess was shown Olive’s registration card. Olive and her younger sister Anne were both VAD nurses with the Red Cross during the war. The Duchess of Cambridge’s great-grandmother Olive Middleton helped the sick and wounded as a British Red Cross volunteer during World War I.

The Royal Family

The Duchess of Cambridge was shown documents relating to her relatives’ experiences of life on the Front by IWM’s Head of Documents, Anthony Richards. Catherine was shown letters and documents relating to Francis, Lionel and Maurice from World War One. The Duchess looked fascinated as she learned more about her family history while examining documents during the visit

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Kensington Palace

The items shown included a field service postcard from Lionel dated 16 July 1916, where he notes that “I am quite well”. Sadly, Lionel was killed in action on the same day, aged just 24.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Kensington Palace

The telegram from Noel Middleton to the family, informs that Francis’ body had been found and the circumstances of his death: “Bad News Francis Body Found Near Taylor’s Killed Instantaneously Bomb Saw Norman Yesterday And Grave In Churchyard”

Kensington Palace

Among the Lupton Brothers’ letters, was a letter of condolence on behalf of King George V to Duchess’ great-great Grandfather Francis Martineau Lupton,  from the Keeper of the Privy Purse at Buckingham Palace stating,

The King realises that this is the third beloved son you have given to your Country’s cause

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Imperial War Museum

The eldest brother, Major Francis Lupton, served with the 8th Battalion West Yorkshire Regiment and was killed by a bomb on 19 February 1917 aged 31. Francis’s brother, Lieutenant Lionel Lupton, the youngest of the three, had been killed in action only a year earlier aged 24. Lionel had served 28th Brigade Royal Field Artillery, spending significant time in the Front Line trenches in France. Captain Maurice Lupton served with the 7th Battalion West Yorkshire Regiment and also spent time in the trenches, occasionally meeting with his younger brother, Lionel. Maurice was the first family casualty of the war and was killed by a sniper in 1915 aged 28.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Imperial War Museum

During the visit, she met with historians, curators and the fellow descendant of a First World War soldier. Charlotte Czyzyk, Project Manager of Lives of WWI, explains the IWM’s digital memorial of those who lived during the First World War. The project includes the details of Duchess’ relatives.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Kensington Palace

It must have been an emotional and proud moment for Duchess to look at those historic items and knowing how her family has served the nation.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
James Whatling

For the visit, Duchess chose to bring back one of her iconic looks. She wore a blue shift bespoke dress from her trusty designer Jenny Packham.

Duchess of Cambridge made a Stunning unannounced Visit to Imperial War Museum
Canadian Heritage Flickr

We first saw the dress in September 2016, when Catherine arrived with William, George and Charlotte in British Columbia, Canada to start their 10-days long Canada tour.

Duchess of Cambridge weairng blue jenny packham dress
Canadian Heritage/Dailymail

The knee-length wool-crepe dress features a peter-pan collar, slightly puffed shoulders with three quarter slightly flared sleeves and self-belted waistline.

Duchess of Cambridge weairng blue jenny packham dress
Canadian Heritage/Kensington Royal

A closer look at the dress.

Gianvito Rossi’s ‘Gianvito 105’ pumps
Gianvito Rossi’s ‘Gianvito 105’ pumps

Duchess paired the dress with her now-go-to pair of Gianvito Rossi suede nude pumps. She wore the pumps with the same dress in September 2016 too.

Mulberry Amberley Nude Blush Leather Clutch
Mulberry Amberley Nude Blush Leather Clutch

She was carrying Mulberry Amberley Nude Blush Leather Clutch (thanks to Middleton Maven on Twitter for Id). The clutch is described on Mulberry as, “A new addition to the equestrian-inspired Amberley family, this Clutch bag features the distinctive Rider’s Lock. The chain strap can be fully detached. It has an optimised interior for its small size, with the main compartment, zipped pocket and credit card slots. The £495 clutch in the nude is not available any more but currently retailing in Cobalt Blue, Black and Maroon (oxblood) on Mulberry, Italist and Nordstrom.

Duchess of Cambridge wearing her sapphire and diamond earrings
Kensington Royal

Catherine finished her look with her diamond and sapphire earrings and Cartier Ballon Bleu watch.

Cartier Ballon Bleu watch
Cartier Ballon Bleu watch

Duchess was also seen wearing Women of The First World War Brooch available on Poppyshop (ided by Lauren Parkinson on twitter).

Women of the First World War Poppy
Women of the First World War Poppy

The £29.99 poppy is described as,

“Women played a huge role in the First World War. They served as nurses in the field hospitals, and here at home. They worked in factories, making munitions. They worked on the land. And they were recognised afterwards with the right to vote.
100 years on, The Royal British Legion has created this special brooch dedicated to the memory of the courageous women who served and lost their lives as a direct result of the First World War.
The brooch is beautifully packaged in a floral design box. Each brooch comes with a certificate commemorating the life of a woman who lost her life as a direct result of the First World War. These names are recognised by CWGC as women serving in the auxiliary units during the First World War. Designed exclusively for the Centenary year, this stunning brooch adds a vintage feel to the classic two petal enamel poppy. Plated with a gold-tone and hand finished with brilliant baguette crystals, this charming brooch is the perfect way to support The Royal British Legion.”

 

Next, we will see Duchess on November 08, when she and Duke of Cambridge will attend the Tusk Trust Conservation awards.

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Lots of Hugs, Sports and Flowers for Duchess of Cambridge in Essex

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Kensington Palace

Today the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were in Essex to visit the Coach Core Facility in Basildon Sporting Village. Coach Core is an apprenticeship programme that helps young people who are not in education, employment or training to build a career in sports coaching.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Active Essex on Twitter

Established by The Royal Foundation in 2012 and driven by a desire to build upon the legacy of the Olympic Games, Coach Core aims to harness the power of sport, and its ability to change lives and empower young people.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Royal Family

Believing in the potential of Sport to transform lives – The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry founded the apprenticeship scheme to help young people become sports coaches.  Coach Core is making high quality coaching accessible and affordable to all, creating future coaches for local clubs, companies and communities.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Kensington Palace

Coach Core takes young people aged 16-24, who are not in education or employment, and trains them to be sports coaches and positive role models and mentors in their communities.

Upon arrival, Duke and Duchess were welcomed by the very excited group of children who were waiting for them in the extremely cold weather.

 A video clip from Essex News, when Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrived at Basildon sporting village and took time to say hello to children and people who’d gathered to greet them.

A young kid was determined not to leave William’s hand, William entertained him by joking that his hands are really warm.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Kensington Palace

During the visit, William and Catherine met apprentices as well as some of the 30 plus graduates of the programme and saw how the scheme in Essex is getting the local community involved in sport. Coach Core targets communities, which have the highest levels of youth unemployment and social deprivation.

Upon arrival, Duke and Duchess were welcomed by the very excited group of children who were waiting for them in the extremely cold weather.
Kensington Palace

William and Catherine joined the children for tennis and indoor athletics sessions. Catherine tried her hand at tennis -a sport she famously love and William tried to throw a foam javelin.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Royal Family

Now in its third year, Coach continues to build strong partnerships with local organisations. Today, The Duke and Duchess found out more about two of these – Sport for Confidence and The South Essex Gymnastics Club, both of which have employed multiple apprentices through the scheme.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Kensington Palace

The royal couple took part in a game of Boccia – one of the sports provided by Sport for Confidence which offers sporting opportunities for individuals who face barriers to participation. They played on two opposite teams and enjoyed a great laugh.

Kensington Palace

William and Catherine toured the  gymnastics centre and watched the Olympic standard gymnasts in training and a pre-school session run by Coach Core apprentices and graduates at the gymnastics centre, which is the home of South Essex Gymnastics Club

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Kensington Palace

Coach Core with an aim to empower young people, since it’s birth in 2012,  has 99% of graduates enter full-time education or secure employment.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Kensington Palace

A group photo marking the visit.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Kensington Palace

A sweet moment when a  lady from Sports for Confidence asked for a hug and Catherine was all smiling while hugging her.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Kensington Palace

Before leaving, Duchess was presented with a posy from cute little kid Sophie Mitchell.

The couple was all smiles and waves as they left the sporting village after spending time with children and apprentices.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
James Whatling

For the day full of sports and hugs, Duchess chose a very elegant and stylish chic look. She wore Smythe 2 Button Blazer with thank Christin Zi on Twitter. The Glen Check with Black Corduroy tailored blazer was an exquisite choice for the engagement full of activities.

Smythe 2 Button Blazer
Smythe 2 Button Blazer

The single-breasted silhouette has a traditional riding blazer feel, featuring a contrast collar, flattering pocket flaps and oversized leather buttons.

Smythe 2 Button Blazer
Smythe 2 Button Blazer

The blazer retailed for $795 at Smythe and Shoptiques is now sold out. This was not the first time we saw Duchess wearing a Smythe blazer.

Duchess in Smythe Blazer
Duchess in Smythe Blazer ( photo: Canadian heritage)

She wore Smythe blazers in the past i.e. navy blazer debuted during Canada 2011 tour and khaki Duchess blazer during Canada tour in 2016, named Duchess after Catherine wore navy in 2011.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Coach Core in Essex
Derek Momodu

Underneath the jacket, Duchess wore a black turtleneck sweater that we have seen in the past too and paired it with black skinny jeans.

Duchess in tutrleneck sweater and black skinny jeans
Kensington Palace

It was the fourth time since February 2017, when we saw Duchess wearing this sort of look – a blazer or jacket with a black turtleneck and black skinny jeans (Thanks to Katie on Instagram for pointing it out). In February 2017 she wore the sweater and jeans with Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini Red blazer when she had her first RAF Cadets engagement in 2017, then with Perfect Moment Mini Duvet quilted down ski jacket when she met with the runners of London Marathon in the same month and then in October 2017 at Coach Core engagement with Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini blue blazer.

Aquatalia Fallon Boots
Aquatalia Fallon Boots

Catherine paired her outfit with Russell & Bromley Aquatalia Fallon Boots. With elastic detailing and a stacked heel, the ‘Fallon’ by Aquatalia is a gaucho-Chelsea boot hybrid. The ankle boot is crafted from weather-resistant black suede and finished with two zips. They are available at Rusell & Bromley for £295.00.

Kiki McDonough White Topaz and Diamond Cushion Drop earrings
Kiki McDonough White Topaz and Diamond Cushion Drop earrings

Duchess debuted a new pair of earrings today. She was wearing White Topaz and Diamond Cushion Drop earrings from Kiki McDonough. The £1,166.67 earrings are described as, “Two looks in one make these earrings an irresistible buy; featuring a dazzling White Topaz cushion drop on an elegant 18ct White Gold and Diamond hoop. Wear the hoops on their own or add the drop for a different look.” They are available at Kiki Store in both white and yellow gold and at Neiman Marcus in Yellow Gold.

Smythson Black Panama East West Zip Tote
Smythson Black Panama East-West Zip Tote

Christin Zi on Twitter also spotted a black shopper tote in Duchess’ car when she was stepping out. It looked like her Smythson Black Panama East-West Zip Tote.

The visit was full of fun and energy. The kids and apprentices, as well as the attendees, were all enjoying the day with Duke and Duchess. A video of the day shared by Kensington Palace on Instagram. So far we do not have any other engagement scheduled for Duchess in the upcoming weeks.

In Cambridge household news Prince George started his school yesterday after the mid-term break. Prince Charles’ is celebrating his 70th Birthday in November. A documentary dedicated to his birthday is being released by BBC on his birthday. In a trailer released so far a very interesting clip has emerged in which Grandpa Prince Charles paid a sweet tribute to his eldest Grandson Prince George.

Standing in an arboretum at Birkhall, his Scottish estate, Charles says: “This is George’s wood.” He motions to dozens of different tree varieties which were planted when George was born five years ago. “As I get older, all I really long for is to plant trees,” the future King added. “I hope it will be quite amusing for George, as they grow up, and he grows up.”

Prince Charles speaking about his upcoming tour

In other clip released by Clarence House ahead of Charles and Camilla’s Africa tour, we can see a picture of Prince Louis’ christening on the side table of Charles. It was a sweet gesture showing Charles is actually closed to his grandchildren irrespective of the rumours in media.

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Duchess of Cambridge in dazzling Royal Jewels at State Banquet

Duchess of Cambridge at State Banquet
Duchess of Cambridge at State Banquet
The Royal Family

Tonight, Queen Elizabeth II hosted a state banquet in the honour of Netherlands King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima during their 2 days state visit to the UK.

As we all were expecting Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were in attendance at the banquet. Earlier in the day, among the rumours that whether they will be attending or not, a picture of William and Catherine arriving at Kensington Palace with Prince Louis emerged. A small video of William and Catherine arriving at Kensington Palace was shared by @spenclaire on Instagram.

Duchess of Cambridge at State Banquet
Kensington Royal

Duchess’ first solo foreign visit was to the Netherlands in 2016, where she met King Willem-Alexander.

Duchess of Cambridge at State Banquet

Mark Steward shared the photos of William and Catherin’s heading towards Buckingham Palace earlier.

Duchess of Cambridge at State Banquet
The Royal Family

The State Banquet is a white-tie event that means a night of stunning gowns and dazzling royal jewels. And the royals did not disappoint us tonight. Queen Elizabeth accompanied by Prince Charles and Duchess of Cornwall stood with King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima for the official photograph in the Music Room prior to the state banquet at Buckingham Palace.

State Banquet during the Netherlands State Visit
The Royal Family

Queen Elizabeth wore the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland tiara and Camilla chose the Greville tiara.

State Banquet during the Netherlands State Visit
The Royal Family

As it was expected the stylish Dutch Queen definitely brought the big guns when it came to royal jewels. She wore the stunning Stuart tiara with a beautiful double shaded grey-blue gown with a net cape.

State Visit 1982
Royal.gov.uk

This was Queen Elizabeth’s second state banquet for Dutch royals. She hosted the first banquet for Netherlands’ Queen Beatrix and Prince Claus in November 1982.

State Banquet Preparations
Royal.gov.uk

Organizing a State banquet involves lots of planning and at the state banquet itself, the attendees follow lots of protocols. The official website of Royal family explains, “Preparations for a State banquet begin well over a year in advance, but the final build of the State banquet table starts around five days ahead of the arrival of the visiting Head of State. The operational arm of Buckingham Palace, the Master of the Household’s department take the main bulk of the responsibility for ensuring the Banquet runs according to plan“.

The Royal Kitchens before the State Banquet
Royal.gov.ul

The Chefs in The Royal Kitchens at Buckingham Palace had been busy preparing for the State Banquet today. They created 280 slices of a delicious chocolate orange torte. The Royal Pastry Chefs have created a ‘Torte au Chocolat Amer et Madarines Crème au Café,’ especially for the occasion. Pastry Chef Selwyn Stoby revealed some of the early stages of the torte design.

The Royal Kitchens before the State Banquet
Royal.gov.uk

The creme au cafe features different layers of flavours including a thin chocolate base, a chocolate sponge, and a rich filling of orange chocolate mousse. Selwyn and his team then layered a ribbon of vibrant marmalade on top of the mousse. Every part of the torte has been produced in the Kitchens of Buckingham Palace, by Selwyn and three other Royal Household pastry chefs.

The Royal Kitchens before the State Banquet
Royal.gov.uk

For today’s lunch, the pastry chefs created a ‘parfait aux Pommes et mûres.’ The design includes ‘Apple pearl balls’, miniature meringue balls and apple stock syrup. Each parfait is carefully cased in white chocolate to contrast to the bitter blackberry sauce. More about State Banquet Kitchen preparations can be found here.

State Banquet during the Netherlands State Visit
The Royal Family

The banquet was attended by many members of the royal family. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall accompanied guests to the Ballroom for the State Banquet.

State Banquet during the Netherlands State Visit
The Royal Family

Both Queen Elizabeth and King Willem-Alexander gave formal speeches at the Banquet. King Willem in his speech delightfully described Queen as, “most fearless Bond girl ever”, referring to her 2012 London Olympic entrance. The full speeches can be found here.

Duchess of Cambridge in Alexander McQueen ice blue gown at the State Banquet
KensingtonRoyal

Duchess chose an ice-blue mermaid Alexander McQueen gown for the event. The gown has divided opinion on social media. Duchess’s gown has a similar shade of the gown, designed by Sir Norman Hartnell, Queen Elizabeth wore 1958 at the State Banquet hosted by Netherlands King and Queen during her state visit.

Curator Caroline de Guitaut adjusts displays during a press preview for Fashioning a Reign: 90 Years of Style from The Queen's Wardrobe, an exhibition at Buckingham Palace in London. At right is a pale blue and gold evening dress by Sir Norman Hartnell, worn by The Queen on a State Visit to The Netherlands in 1958
royal.gov.uk

Catherine’s gown has cap sleeves and asymmetric neckline with a rose detail on the right shoulder. The gown was a romantic mesh of vintage and contemporary design with a mermaid skirt.

Queen Mary's Lover's knot tiara
Queen Mary’s Lover’s knot tiara

As expected, Duchess chose Queen Mary’s Lover’s Knot Tiara, commonly known Cambridge Lover’s Knot tiara (although they both are different tiaras), for the night.  The tiara was Lady Diana’s signature tiara as she was seen wearing it many times. Made in 1913 for Queen Mary featuring 19 baroque pearl pendants, the tiara has become the sort of Duchess’ go-to tiara now, as she wore it on consecutive 4 royal events during 2016 and 2017. More about this tiara can be found here at the Order of Splendor.

Duchess of Cambridge wore Collingwood Pearl earrings
Mark Stewart on Twitter

Catherine paired the tiara with Diana’s Collingwood pearl earrings. Princess Diana of Wales used to pair both lover’s knot tiara and Collingwood earrings often.

Queen Alexandra’s Wedding pearl and diamond necklace
Her Majesty’s Jewel Vault

The highlight of the night was a beautiful necklace from the royal vault that Catherine has worn for the first time. She wore Queen Alexandra’s Wedding pearl and diamond necklace. The necklace features 8 pearls surrounded by diamonds, each connected with festoons of diamonds, and three detachable diamond and pearl drop pendants. Queen Mary gave the necklace to Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, and she wore it constantly. The necklace was finally reunited with the brooch and earrings when The Queen inherited it in 2002.

wore Queen Alexandra’s Wedding pearl and diamond necklace
QueensJewelVault

It last seen in 1983, worn by Queen Mother at the state banquet coincidentally hosted by Queen Elizabeth II for the Netherlands King and Queen. Read more about the necklace at Her Majesty’s Jewel Vault here.

Duchess of Cambridge at State Banquet
KensingtonRoyal

The most talked-about element of Duchess’s today’s look was her Royal Order. She wore the Royal Family Order of Queen Elizabeth II. A nod to Prince William’s anti-ivory campaign, Catherine’s Royal Family Order is made of glass instead of traditional ivory. Today it was reported that Catherine was presented with the traditional RFO in 2017 and she also wore it during the 2017 December Diplomatic Reception.

Dazzling Duchess of Cambridge attended Diplomatic Reception
James Whatling

The order, containing a portrait of the Monarch set in diamonds that is suspended from a ribbon, is awarded by the Monarch to the female members of the royal family as a substitute of commemorative medals royal men wear. Princess Diana received the royal order 1981, Countess of Wessex was presented with her royal family order in 2004 while Duchess of Cornwall received in 2007.

Duchess of Cambridge in Alexander McQueen ice blue gown at the State Banquet
The Royal Family

Catherine was also seen wearing a diamond bracelet on her right hand. Due to the lack of clear pictures, it was difficult to identify whether it is a new piece or something Duchess has worn in past too. She carried a box clutch with stone embellishments on it. The shape of the clutch is pretty similar to her Purple Jenny Packham Clutch that she carried in July 2017 when she visited the National History Museum.

Duke and Duchess of Cambridge gave reception to BBC One Teen Hereos
KensingtonRoyal

I believe after tonight Catherine will be returning to Anmer Hall where Prince George and Princess Charlotte are spending their mid-term break and will be back on Sunday with all kids before her next engagement. On Tuesday she will be visiting Coach Core in Essex with Prince William.

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