Kate Middleton has had ’10 years of growth’ says Chris Ship
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Over the past decade, Kate’s role within the Royal Family has grown to the point she is now likely to play a major part in the modernisation of the Firm, according to royal historian and author Sarah Gristwood. She told Vanity Fair: “I’ll bet those courtiers who reputedly once sneered about ‘Waity Katy’ are the very ones bowing lowest now.
“She looks like the person who’s going to have to play a big hand in the ongoing remoulding of the monarchy.”
Kate and Prince William got married 10 years ago after dating for several years.
During her first period as a member of the Royal Family, Kate took on a few royal patronages and carried out important visits, including a royal tour to Australia with Prince William and Prince George in 2014.
However, much like Prince Philip and the Queen before the death of King George VI, the Cambridges lived their first few years as a married couple partially far from the public eye.
First, when the Duke of Cambridge was serving as a member of the RAF Search & Rescue team, they were based in Anglesey, Wales.
Later, when Prince William became in 2015 an air ambulance pilot the East Anglian Air Ambulance, the Cambridges relocated to Norfolk.
Only in the summer of 2017, the Duke of Cambridge committed to serving the Crown full-time and left his post as an ambulance pilot, making him and Kate more prominent members of the Firm.
Over the past few years, the Duchess became a more confident public speaker and led more independent long-term projects.
In 2018, while pregnant with Prince Louis, she launched a steering group focused on better understanding the early years and how experiences lived through during the first five years of a child’s life can have a long-lasting impact.
This work was paired up with royal visits and the partnership with patronages focused on childhood and children’s mental health.
In January 2020, Kate launched a nationwide survey on the early years, to promote which she toured alone the country.
In November, as a result of her years-long work, the Royal Foundation hosted its first forum on the topic, which included the survey’s results paired up with a study and further analysis by experts.
During the first national lockdown, Kate also launched the photography contest Hold Still, which invited people to take pictures describing life in Britain during the pandemic.
Over the past few years, Kate and William have also embraced social media to communicate with the public.
On Instagram and Twitter, the Cambridges have been sharing snippets of their family life by publishing pictures of their children as well as speaking about their work.
Earlier this year, Kate spoke about the latest instalment of her Hold Still project by unboxing on camera the book containing the pictures of the 100 finalists of the photography contest.
The sensible growth in Kate’s confidence and importance of projects comes at one of the Royal Family’s most important moment, as it is set to start transitioning from the reign of Queen Elizabeth II to the one of her son and heir Prince Charles.
Ms Gristwood said: “There is a repositioning going on within the monarchy, and I think this is one of the most important stages in Kate’s life as a royal.
“She is doing things independently and voicing new ideas. This is Kate’s moment.”
Kate, the royal historian added, is also pivotal for the Firm following the departure of Meghan and Prince Harry as full-time working royals.
She said: “There was a real risk that when the Sussexes left, the glamour of the Royal Family would also be taking a transatlantic plane ticket leaving it looking distinctly dowdy.
“Kate was the person to fill that void, and she did it magnificently.”
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