KATE Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge respected the Royal Family protocol by remaining a step behind the Queen during their visit to King’s College in London, but the Duchess “kept an eye” on the Queen as the Monarch appeared “vulnerable”, claimed a Royal expert.
The Queen and the Duchess of Cambridge attended their first Royal engagement without any other member of the Royal Family outside of Buckingham Palace last week. Speaking on podcast On Heir, Royal experts Omid Scobie and Emily Andrews claimed the Head of State appeared “vulnerable” and observers were naturally worrying about her. Mr Scobie said: “We’re not used to seeing her ever appearing vulnerable.
“And I think there are moments with the Queen on engagements these days – despite the fact that she is very present, very engaged and very much on form still – there is just a little bit of vulnerability there that makes you, as anyone would for an elderly person, that worry.”
Echoing her colleague, Ms Andrews – who was present at the King’s College event – claimed she was “fearful” something could happen to the Queen as she watched her struggling to “put her feet up” and walk on uneven surfaces.
She said: “I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there. Because the footsteps are slightly more uncertain now, just because physically you can’t put your feet up.
“And when you see a stair point, when you see a slightly uneven surface, as an observer you’re slightly fearful for her.
“And you can almost see, no one wants to touch the Queen, you don’t touch the Monarch if she needs help, but the Lord Lieutenant when she got out of the car he almost went forward to offer her a hand or an arm.
“And it was almost like he checked himself: ‘She’s the Queen, she can do it’.”
There’s the slight sense of ‘Oh goodness, could something happen we don’t want to happen?
But the Royal expert claimed Kate, who was with the Queen to inaugurate the new building of the London prestigious university, kept a constant eye on the Monarch.
She added: “There’s that vulnerability there and there’s the slight sense of ‘Oh goodness, could something happen we don’t want to happen?’
“And I think that’s why we’re seeing her less in public and as time goes on this is only going to be more noticeable.
“What I did see was that Kate always kept an eye on the Queen.
“She would always be one step behind as the protocol dictates but I’m sure the Queen wouldn’t mind if she was with her, but it is the Queen.”
The royal pair shared a blue blanket in the back of the car as they arrived at King’s College London.
Huge crowds of students gathered to catch a glimpse of Kate and the Queen, 92, who is the patron of the university.
The two royals opened Bush House, a new set of buildings on the university’s Strand Campus.
During the visit, Kate and the monarch toured the new facilities. They visited a roof terrace where Kate described the view as “impressive”.
The Queen and Kate also viewed a robotics demonstration and Kate even shook a robotic hand, joking: “Very nice to meet you.”
They went on to visit the King’s virtual trading floor and met students from the Entrepreneurship Institute, which supports entrepreneurial thinking, skills and experiences amongst students, staff and alumni.
Kate – whose family runs a party planning business – met entrepreneur Aysha Ingar who has set up an app for Muslim women and Tobi Oredein who has launched a media platform for black women in the UK.
Ms Oredein said of Kate: “She was saying that her parents are entrepreneurs so she’s all for it.”