For their final engagement in Dublin, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended a reception hosted by Tánaiste Simon Coveney at the Museum of Literature Ireland.
Day two in Ireland saw William and Kate spend time with Ireland's national centre for youth mental health, Jigsaw, viewing street art on Temple Bar's Love Lane, before travelling to Kildare to see the work of leading social justice charity Extern and meeting locals whilst doing a spot of shopping for a cooking session with a group of teenagers. From there, they travelled to Meath to learn about sustainable farming efforts. Later, upon their return to Dublin, the couple enjoyed a scenic cliff walk at Howth.
Host for the event Simon Coveney is Tánaiste (deputy head of the government) and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade. He was joined by his wife Ruth for the evening.
It was revealed tonight their three daughters Jessica, Annalise and Beth wrote letters for George, Charlotte and Louis which Mr Coveney was pleased to hand William and Kate. I thought it a lovely touch and very much in keeping with the incredibly warm welcome the royals have received in Ireland. The Duke and Duchess have continued to focus on the theme of reconciliation and looking to the future, which we've seen many members of the family echo since the Queen's State Visit in 2011. A simple but thoughtful gesture like the children of the deputy leader of Ireland writing to the children of a future king of the UK represents how far relations have come. It struck me as a symbolic moment and perhaps something Prince George will remember decades from now when he visits in his capacity as monarch. It is moments like these I feel underscore the unique soft power of monarchy.
The Cambridges met an array of guests.
William and Kate met leaders from political parties including Fianna Fáil's Micheál Martin and Brendan Howlin from the Labour Party.
The Museum of Literature opened to the public last September following years of conversations and proposals.
Architects Scott Tallon Walker and exhibition designers Ralph Appelbaum Associates were commissioned to transform Newman House’s Aula Maxima building into a 10,000ft exhibition space. The result is a historic partnership between the National Library of Ireland and University College Dublin, considered a cultural landmark.
Vogue recently described it as "a poetic ode to Ireland's literary past, present and future".
Inside the royals viewed a treasured first edition of James Joyce's Ulysses.
The Duke and Duchess were shown the book.
During a speech, Prince William recalled the difficult history between both countries and looked ahead to the future amid Brexit challenges.
"Legal treaties are vital in underpinning the relationships between states. But relationships between people are equally, if not more, essential – especially between the people of our two countries." — The Duke of Cambridge #RoyalVisitIreland 🇬🇧🇮🇪 pic.twitter.com/lMZYgSmZDe— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) March 4, 2020
"I am confident that friendship, understanding and a shared vision for a peaceful and prosperous future will ensure that the unique and precious bond between our peoples is not broken."
William continued: "My family is determined to continue to play our part in protecting, preserving and strengthening that bond...It is vital that people of my generation, and generations to come, never take advantage of the progress we have made together."
William's full speech:
'Tánaiste, a dhaoine uaisle,
Catherine and I are delighted to be here at the Museum of Literature Ireland, and are hugely grateful to the Tánaiste for the very generous welcome. It goes without saying that the relationship between the UK and Ireland is of vital importance, and that is why I am so pleased that Catherine and I are undertaking our first official visit here.
Growing up, I remember seeing the Troubles that took place, which affected so many people across the UK and Ireland. This explains why one of the truly profound moments for Catherine and me took place yesterday at the Garden of Remembrance. It was a reminder of the complexity of our shared history, and that as my grandmother said during her visit in 2011, “Our islands have experienced more than their fair share of heartache and turbulence”.
But it was also a reminder about how far we have come. It is right that we continue to remember those who suffered as a consequence of our troubled past. And whilst many wrongs have been done, it is important that we are not bound by these.
Today, our relationship goes far beyond two countries that are simply neighbours. “We are firm friends and equal partners”, as my grandmother put it. The links between our people, businesses and our culture are inextricable, and we should all be proud to see how strong those bonds are.
As we look ahead to some changes in our relationship, we must never forget how far we have come together in recent decades in transforming the relationships across our two islands.
Many people deserve our deepest gratitude for their hard work, imagination and, above all, courage in bringing about these profound changes. It is vital that people of my generation, and generations to come, never take for granted the progress we have made together. We must recommit ourselves to the path of friendship and understanding.
Of course, the changing relationship between the UK and the EU will require us to work together, to ensure that the relationship between Ireland and the UK remains just as strong.
Over the past two days, Catherine and I have seen for ourselves why Ireland is a country looked upon with such envy. As we stood on the cliffs at Howth and looked across the Irish Sea – a mere 50 miles to the British coastline – it was easy to see why so many people find the lure of this beautiful country so difficult to resist.
And beyond the breath-taking landscapes, we have received such wonderful hospitality and friendship from all those we have met. And this morning we were privileged to meet a group of remarkable people who are working to improve the lives of those who are less fortunate. Their commitment and their desire to help is truly inspirational. And we’re looking forward to seeing the wonders that the West coast has to offer when we travel there tomorrow.
Ladies and gentlemen, legal treaties are vital in underpinning the relationships between states. But relationships between people are equally, if not more, essential – especially between the people of our two countries, whose lives, histories and futures are so deeply intertwined. I am confident that friendship, understanding and a shared vision for a peaceful and prosperous future will ensure that the unique and precious bond between our people is not broken. My family is determined to continue playing our part in protecting, preserving and strengthening that bond.
So tonight, we celebrate our commitment to working together – a commitment that I firmly believe will support our relationship in going from strength to strength.
Ladies and gentlemen, may I offer a toast to the President of Ireland and to the people of this wonderful country in thanks for the warmth of your welcome on what I hope will be the first of many visits for us.
Go raibh míle maith agaibh go léir.'
Tánaise Simon Coveney said: "I very much welcome this visit by the Duke and Duchess, their first to Ireland, and hope this will be the first of many visits in the coming years."
The Duchess chose a vintage Oscar de la Renta polka-dot belted dress with a ruffled neckline and black trim.
For accessories, Kate carried her Jimmy Choo Celeste clutch in black velvet.
And her Jimmy Choo Romy pumps in black velvet.
The Duchess accessorised with hoop earrings. Replicate Royalty identified them as the £5 Accessorize Twisted Circle Drop earrings.
To read today's earlier post, please click here.
Tomorrow, William and Kate will travel to the west of Ireland for engagements in Galway before returning to London.