Prince William and Kate host evening reception with the Wessexes – best photos

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Photo: © PA

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge stepped out on Monday night to host a reception on behalf of the Queen at Buckingham Palace to mark the UK-Africa Investment Summit. Prince William, 37, and Kate, 38, were accompanied by the Earl and Countess of Wessex, as well as the Princess Royal. Kate looked elegant in an outfit by Needle & Thread, while Sophie wore a gorgeous red gown.

MORE: All the details on Kate Middleton’s glam outfit at Buckingham Palace reception

The Cambridges were last seen in public last Wednesday when they carried out a day of engagements in Bradford. The Duke and Duchess met Heads of State and Government and their partners at the reception, before they gathered for a group photograph.

The UK-Africa Investment Summit was hosted by Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday morning and brought together businesses, governments and international institutions to showcase and promote the breadth and quality of investment opportunities across Africa. The Duke of Sussex is believed to have carried out one of his last royal duties at the Summit, as he met with leaders from Morocco, Malawi, Mozambique.

In a warm and personal speech at the reception on Monday night, the Duke welcomed the heads of state or ministers from 21 African nations, telling them: “My grandmother is sorry not to be here this evening, but she has asked me to pass on her warmest wishes to you all.” He continued: “The African continent holds a very special place in my heart. It is the place my father took my brother and me shortly after our mother died. And when deciding where best to propose to Catherine, I could think of no more fitting place than Kenya to get down on one knee.

“Throughout my life, I have been lucky enough to spend time in many other parts of Africa. I’m also honoured to be the Patron of the Royal African Society. And as Catherine and I have said to several of you here tonight, we hope to have the chance to visit many more countries in the future and share our mutual love of your continent with our children.”

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The Earl and Countess of Wessex arrived at Buckingham Palace for the reception. Sophie wore a gorgeous red dress, while Edward looked smart in a suit.

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Photo: © PA

Kate was in great spirits on Monday evening as she welcomed guests to the Buckingham Palace reception.

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The Duchess of Cambridge’s hair was styled in loose waves, and as ever, her outfit was perfectly co-ordinated, with a matching clutch and heels to go with her Needle & Thread gown.

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Photo: © PA

Kate and Sophie chatted together with Prince Edward at the royal event on Monday, which also marked Sophie’s birthday.

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Photo: © PA

During a group photograph with the heads of state and government in the Throne Room, Prime Minister Boris Johnson joked “Say Brexit” as the photographer counted them down.

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Prince William and Kate shared a joke as they chatted to each other at the royal reception.