On December 5th, Kensington Palace announced that The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were going to hop onto the Royal Train for a tour traveling 1250 miles with 10 stops across England, Scotland, and Wales! This holiday tour was specifically to allow The Duke and Duchess to pay tribute to individuals and organisations that have gone above and beyond in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Full details below:
On December 6th, before departing from Euston Station to begin their tour, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge met with inspiring transport workers who have gone out of their way to help people feel safe & secure throughout this difficult year.
They left a message, handwritten by The Duchess, at the station thanking all the workers who are working during the holidays!
The message, signed by both William and Kate, read: “Thank you to transport workers everywhere for keeping the country moving throughout this difficult year. Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas!”
For her first outfit of the mini-tour, The Duchess of Cambridge wore an Alexander McQueen coat she debuted earlier this year in January with her favorite Ralph Lauren suede boots, a Maple Leaf Tartan Scarf she wore during the Canada 2016 Royal tour, and her Love Letter Handle Bag by Grace Han.
Day One: December 6th
The Earl and Countess of Strathearn (their Scottish titles) kicked off their whirlwind tour in Edinburgh!
The Earl and Countess visited the Scottish Ambulance Service where they met paramedics and staff to thank them for their incredible efforts throughout the pandemic.
It was announced that day that they had become joint patrons of NHS Charities! From KP: “The 240 UK NHS charities provide extra funding and additional services above and beyond NHS core funds, supporting hospitals, community and mental health services and ambulances services.”
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge then got back on the Royal Train and headed to Berwick-Upon-Tweed where they got to meet a bunch of reindeer!
William and Kate visited Holy Trinity Church of England First School where they celebrated the incredible work of teachers over the past year. The Duke and Duchess met pupils and staff including those who kept schools open for vulnerable children and those of key workers.
For her first outfit of the day, The Duchess of Cambridge wore a bespoke Catherine Walker coat she wore while pregnant with Prince Louis and again in January 2019. She paired it once again with her Ralph Suede Boots (later changing into her Stuart Weitzman Black Boots) and a new Strathberry clutch.
For their third stop, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge traveled to Batley where they visited the Batley Community Center and met volunteers who have supported elderly members of their community throughout the COVID-19 by sending cards, having regular phone calls and dropping off shopping, food bags and activity packs.
Also in Batley, The Duchess of Cambridge got to meet a man, Len Gardner, who she met through NHS’s Volunteer Responder ‘Check-in and Chat’ scheme. The Duchess and Len talked on the phone and even exchanged letter. It’s a very sweet story that you can read in full here.
A lovely video put together by Kensington Palace of the heart-warming meeting:
A first meeting in person for The Duchess of Cambridge and Len Gardner, who The Duchess has spoken to previously as part of the NHS Volunteer Responder ‘Check-in and Chat’ scheme.
— The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (@KensingtonRoyal) December 7, 2020
Their final stop of the day, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge travelled to Manchester where they visited Fare Share UK, a charity fighting hunger and food waste by redistributing good quality in-date surplus food to frontline charities across the UK.
The Duke and Duchess paid tribute to volunteers and organisations across the UK who have supported vulnerable families throughout 2020.
William and Kate also watched a special performance by Wayne Ellington and Manchester Inspirational Voices, presented by Band on the Wall, a local independent music venue which has been supported during COVID-19 by the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund.
The Duke of Cambridge gave a speech where he said: “You are the people that have not only kept our country going but have also helped warm all our hearts by showing us the very best of human nature.”
For her outfit change, The Duchess repeated her Hobbs London maxi coat with jigsaw trousers, her Emmy London block heels, and a new Métier Roma Small Suede Clutch.
For the second engagement The Duchess changed into a new Troy London x Brora Lambswool Fair isle jumper.
Day Two: December 7th
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge kicked off Day Two of the Royal Train Tour in Cardiff, Wales!
The Duke and Duchess visited Cardiff University where they heard how the students’ mental has been during this challenging year.
William and Kate also roasted marshmallows and even participated in a secret Santa gift exchange! Details from Royal reporter Rebecca English: “Kate bought Gwennan Lewis a £13.99 Prosecco Pong game! William bought Dewi Morgan, finger flick football game. Kate got a Welsh Love Spoon and William a beer mat flick game!”
Sweet photo of the two browsing the Christmas stalls:
Their second stop was in Bath where The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge visited Cleeve Court Care Home to tribute to the efforts of care staff across the country.
William and Kate heard from staff about their experiences of providing care and helping residents stay connected to their loved ones throughout the pandemic.
Also in Bath, The Duke and Duchess got to got to meet Jasmine Warner and her brother Otto who today completed his cancer treatment and was hoping to meet the royals!
Next, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge heading to Reading where they visited the Royal Berkshire hospital! Fun Fact: Kate was born at this hospital.
The Duke and Duchess thanked nurses for their incredible and tireless work during the pandemic. Among the nurses they met was Lead Nurse Rafael Fernandes, designer of a special badge to mark the 2020 Year of the Nurse and Midwife.
For her first outfit of the day, The Duchess of Cambridge re-wore an Alexander McQueen coat she debuted recently, with her Ralph Lauren suede boots, an Emilia Wickstead tartan skirt she wore in December 2018 and her Grace Han bag.
The Royal Train Tour came to an end in Windsor where The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge joined Her Majesty The Queen, The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Princess Royal, and The Earl and Countess of Wessex at Windsor Castle.
William and Kate, along with the other members of the Royal family, thanked local volunteers and key workers.
The Duchess of Cambridge recycled another Catherine Walker coat with her Ralph Lauren Suede boots, a new Troy London Faux fur collar, and her Alexander McQueen clutch.
This was such a wonderful mini tour that has really brought out the holiday spirit in so many! I really enjoyed following along and I hope you did too!