Pregnant Kate keeps the Queen waiting at royal Easter Day service
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge kept the Queen and congregation waiting yesterday when they arrived late for the annual Easter service at Windsor Castle.
William and Kate, who is due to give birth to her third child later this month, got to St George’s Chapel after the rest of the Royal Family had gone in with the 91-year-old monarch.
The couple arrived in a chauffeur-driven car five minutes after the scheduled 10.45am start for matins – a breach of protocol by entering after the sovereign.
Kensington Palace declined to say why they were late. But with the Duchess so advanced in her pregnancy, and Windsor busy with tourist traffic, there were plenty of potential excuses.
The Easter bonnets were out with Kate, 36, looking elegant in a brown Catherine Walker coat and matching Lock & Co Betty Boop hat as she made her way into the 14th century Gothic chapel.
The Duchess, who is expected to give birth to her third child towards the end of the month, is now on maternity leave and this is likely to be the last time she is seen in public before she gives birth.
She was not the only heavily pregnant royal at the service.
Zara Tindall, who is expecting her second child some time after Kate, walked down the hill from the Castle’s upper ward with Prince Andrew.
There was no sign then of her husband, Mike Tindall, or their four-year-old daughter Mia.
The Duke of Edinburgh, who has been struggling with a hip problem, missed the service at the chapel where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle will marry next month.
Philip, 96, retired from an official programme of engagements in August but usually attends the family service on Easter Sunday.
The Duke has had to cancel plans to go to a number of events in the past few days.
They included the Maundy service last Thursday and an event on March 22 marking Andrew becoming Colonel of the Grenadier Guards.
But his condition is not thought to be too serious as he was spotted driving his car in Windsor Great Park on Wednesday.
Two more high-profile absentees yesterday were Harry and Meghan, who were said to be spending the weekend “privately”.
Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall were also absent.
They left for Singapore on Saturday and are due to open the Commonwealth Games in Australia on Wednesday.
Members of the public waited outside the chapel as the Queen, who is supposed to be the last to arrive, drew up in a car.
She was presented with posies by Madeline Carleston and Amelia Vivian, two six-year-olds whose parents work and live in the Castle.
It is one of only two days, along with Christmas Day, when the Queen has a break from Government papers.
Andrew and his daughters Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie attended the Easter service, along with Eugenie’s fiance Jack Brooksbank.
Princess Anne and her husband Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence led the Royal Family walking downhill to the chapel.
Anne’s son Peter Phillips and his wife Autumn also attended.
Prince Edward, the Countess of Wessex and their two children Lady Louise Windsor, 14, and James, Viscount Severn, 10, were also present.
Source: EXPRESS CO UK
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