While we were busy covering the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in Sweden and Norway last week, the rest of the British Royal Family was still conducting business as usual. We had television interviews, other foreign tours and wedding dates set while the rest of us were busy tracking Kate’s battle against floral Erdem dresses, so let’s catch up.
First and foremost, as we’ve discussed, this was a very busy January for Kate. Even taking away the tour, she carried out more engagements this month than she ever has for the month of January in the past. But more importantly, the entirety of the BRF’s workload is on the upswing.
Courtesy of @CepeSmith on Twitter:
And I will say that I certainly didn’t anticipate posting as much as I did this past month after a very busy November and December. Once Kate re-emerges from maternity leave this summer and Meghan Markle is married, there’s a distinct possibility we’re looking at both women carrying a full workload in which case, well, we’re all going to have our work cut out for us 😉
Before we switch gears, I wanted to share a quick video of Kate from during a walkabout on Friday:
Buried by all things Scandinavian was the announcement that Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank will marry on Friday, October 12 at St George’s Chapel, Windsor. This is in line with speculation last month that a preferred date in September was bumped due to scheduling conflicts – rumor has it one of them is a tour for Prince Harry and Meghan. As for the other royal wedding, the latest rumor is that Sarah, Duchess of York is not receiving an invitation to Harry and Meghan’s wedding in May. While she wasn’t invited to William and Kate’s in 2011, there was speculation that she might receive one this time around since Harry is close with Eugenie. [UPDATE: There are now conflicting reports that while invitations have still not gone out, Harry will invite his aunt. Whatever the case, I have a feeling we’ll hear about it one way or the other from the Duchess herself at some point.]
Meanwhile, the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall participated in a television interview to mark ITV’s 30th anniversary. The two sat down with hosts Philip Schofield and Holly Willoughby for This Morning. The segment included an exchange of homemade honey and the cooking of a mutton hot pot, the latter a nod to Charles’s statements urging the public to eat mutton instead of lamb for the sake of sheep farmers. The highlight, of course, was Digby, a support dog, chewing a microphone. Good for Digby.
The Prince, the chairman of the honorary exhibition committee who has lent his quiet support behind the scenes, last night saw the fruits of curators’ labour in person, as he became the first member of the Royal Family to view the works in the same building since Charles I himself.
Indeed, Charles’s influence was invaluable when it came to moving many of the pieces from Clarence House, Windsor Castle, Hampton Court Palace, Kensington Palace and Buckingham Palace in order to display them under one roof. The exhibition will be open to the public.
Finally, on Friday, Charles was presented with a portrait of himself painted by a four-year-old from Stroud when he came to carry out an engagement with The Canal & River Trust. The girl’s mother told reporters:
“When we saw the Prince was visiting we thought we would come along and see if we could see him. Bella has been so excited today. She went to pre-school this morning and told all her friends that she was going to see Prince Charles today. The Prince asked her about her painting and where she did it and if Nayla was her little sister and whether she got covered in paint. It was really lovely.”
Last but not least, the Earl and Countess of Wessex are in Sri Lanka to commemorate the 70th anniversary of its independence. The actual anniversary is in fact today and the entire trip is due to last five days.
Early tomorrow I will post a recap of the latest episode of Victoria and then it’ll be back to history, save Kate’s engagement on Wednesday.
Oh, and P.S., but Tuesday marks Accession Day. While this year we’re not celebrating a Sapphire Jubilee, if you missed it you can go back and read about the day Queen Elizabeth ascended the throne here. The Queen marks the day privately at Sandringham where she’s been in residence since before Christmas, but she should be making her way back to London next week. The royal calendar is about to be in full swing!