|Kensington Palace Twitter Feed|
There had been reports of a spring tour for months now, with the Caribbean suggested as the chosen destination, but it's been revealed the couple will take the trip to India at the request of the government. It will be the first time either William or Kate have visited the country, and while it is understood the tour is in the very early stages of planning, it seemed an appropriate time to announce it while the Indian prime minister, Narenda Modi, is in the UK. Below we see the Queen welcoming Mr Modi at Buckingham Palace earlier today.
|British Monarchy Twitter Feed|
It is understood William and Kate will not be taking Prince George and Princess Charlotte with them. More from Rebecca English's story for the Mail Online:
'It is understood William and Kate feel this tour would prove too gruelling for the youngsters, particularly Charlotte who won’t even be a year old. Instead the children will remain in the UK with their nanny, Maria Borallo, and maternal grandparents, Michael and Carole Middleton.
This will not be the first overseas visit the couple have taken without their children having taken a trip to the states without their first born at the end of 2014. The couple spent several days in New York city in December last year without George who remained at home in the care of Borallo. '
It is another opportunity for the Cambridges to showcase their skills as ambassadors representing Her Majesty and the United Kingdom abroad. Their previous tours have included Canada, South-East Asia, Australia and New Zealand, with brief trips to Los Angeles and New York, and all have been very successful.
Their last tour was in spring 2014 when the couple, joined by an adorable Prince George, toured Australia and New Zealand.
Royal tours to India have proved extremely interesting over the decades. We have many readers who will recall Prince Charles and Princess Diana's visit in 1992 which resulted in the iconic image of Diana at the Taj Mahal.
Looking back through photos of that tour, it gives us a glimpse into possibilities for William and Kate's tour, which royal aides are no doubt carefully planning at the moment. Another unforgettable part of Charles and Diana's tour was the late princess's visit to Mother Teresa's hospice in Calcutta.
Diana was glamorous in a dazzling Catherine Walker evening gown and the Spencer tiara for a banquet hosted by the Indian vice-president. I expect we'll see William and Kate attending a banquet over the course of their stay.
It was a very memorable tour.
Her Majesty during the royal tour of India in 1961.
The Countess of Wessex poses with schoolchildren during a 2013 visit.
We look forward to hearing the full details in the new year and looking at possible designers. It should be another wonderful royal tour :)
Also tonight, the Duchess has several engagements next week. As you know, on Tuesday 17th November, Kate will attend the Fostering Network's annual Fostering Excellence Awards. Below, we see a photo from last year's awards. I expect we'll see the Duchess in a knee-length dress for the evening.
|The Fostering Network|
On Wednesday, 18 November Kate will attend the Place2Be headteacher conference in London. The conference entitled "My head is too full" will include presentations from headteachers working in some of the most disadvantaged parts of the UK, alongside leading experts in child psychology and those involved in M-PACT Plus, a joint programme between Place2Be and Action on Addiction (funded by the Royal Foundation and Comic Relief) to support families dealing with the hidden harm of drug or alcohol addiction.
Earlier today, Kensington Palace announced the Duke and Duchess will carry out five engagements in North Wales on Friday, 20 November focusing on mental health and wellbeing. Caernarfon will be their first location of the day where Their Royal Highnesses will visit a photography project run by the local Mind organisation. The project has been designed to give young people a voice to talk about their experiences and the challenges of living with mental health problems. You will recall William and Kate marked World Mental Health Day at an event hosted by Mind.
They will then visit GISDA, a charity that provides support and accommodation for homeless young people. This is an issue the Palace said William feels particularly close to through his work with patronage Centrepoint.
More from the official press release:
'The Duke and Duchess will visit an exhibition of "Mute: are you being heard?" This is a photography project run by Ynys Môn and Gwynedd local Mind organisation. It is designed to give young people a voice to talk about their experiences living with mental health problems.
The photographs address the issues and challenges faced by young people. The photographers felt it was important to have their images displayed publically, both to raise public awareness about mental health problems, and to showcase their personal expressions of recovery. Also in the room will be students working on pieces of art, themed around mental health.'
Afterwards, William and Kate will visit an Outdoor Education centre in Snowdonia. The day will conclude when the couple meet men from the Vale of Clwyd Mind Men's Shed project in Denbigh and are guided through a series of activities, centred on the theme of 'mindfulness'. They will visit the Peace Garden that has been developed by the project and will be shown a wood work session. Finally, they will meet men involved in the development of a new sensory garden plot.
It's very encouraging to see the continued focus on mental health and, of course, Wales holds a very special place in William and Kate's hearts. This was referenced today by Kensington Palace who said: "The Duke and Duchess, who spent a number of years living in Anglesey, are delighted to be returning to North Wales for a day of official engagements."
Next, we're delighted to announce the winner of our Azuni London giveaway is Debby from Paris. Congratulations Debby, please send me an email and we'll coordinate delivery as quickly as possible. :)
In case you missed it, we looked at Kate's collection of black dresses in a Kate Loves post yesterday. We hope you all have a splendid weekend! :)