William & Kate Host Anmer Hall Weekend

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It’s that time of year again – after the din of Christmas and New Years falls away, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge host friends and family at Anmer Hall the first weekend in January ahead of Kate’s birthday. We know this because, like clockwork, the Cambridges and members of their party are photographed walking to church on Sunday, so we usually have a good sense of who’s attended.

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Usually the most exciting guests to spot are members of the Middleton family, including Kate’s siblings, however this year, it appears that her sister, Pippa Matthews, and her family are still in St Barth’s. But her parents, Mike and Carole Middleton, who joined their younger children on holiday, made it back to Norfolk in time.

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They are also not the headline-generating guests that they usually are – that questionable moniker goes instead to the Marchioness of Cholmondeley (aka Rose Hanbury), who earlier last year was wrapped up in rumors that she had an affair with William in 2018. The Cambridges remained silent on the topic save threatening letters via their lawyers to publications publishing the story, but in June, Rose kept a notably low profile during the U.S. state visit banquet at Buckingham Palace.

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The couples are believed to have been friends for years given the Colmondeleys location in Norfolk and that they both have young children, but before today it had been more than three years since they were photographed together. I would imagine their inclusion this past weekend is good indication that rumors of an affair were incorrect.

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On the fashion front, we saw some new pieces from Kate. The coat is Roksanda Ilincic, and I wouldn’t be surprised if we see it again this winter, while the hat is by Hicks and Brown and the boots are Stuart Weitzman. I liked this look – the fedora is very old school Kate Middleton, while the whole look showcases the Duchess’s more grown-up version of her off-duty style.

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The other big news is that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are reportedly back from Canada. We’ll see them tomorrow in London when they visit Canada House, which I plan to cover, and I’m hoping to get Meghan’s EOY recap up by the end of the week.

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