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Kate Middleton’s First Engagement of the Year is Announced – as She is Seen for the First Time Since Surgery

The Princess of Wales has announced a new engagement, after a long period out of the public eye. On June 8, the Princess will attend the Trooping the Colour dress rehearsal ceremony, the Ministry of Defence has said. The rehearsal comes ahead of the official ceremony on June 15.


Photo: Getty

Until yesterday, the Princess of Wales had not been seen in public since her abdominal surgery in January. She was photographed yesterday by paparazzi as she was driven near Windsor by her mother, Carole Middleton. The Princess wore dark sunglasses and a polo neck, as she looked out from the passenger seat of an Audi 4×4. The photos were published by American gossip site TMZ.

Her absence from public view had prompted widespread concern – as well as a good deal of theorising, as pundits ventured confected ideas about what was wrong with the Princess.

Kensington Palace has maintained throughout that the Princess of Wales would likely return to duties after Easter and that significant medical details would be shared as and when they became relevant. The Palace has been at pains to stress the Princess’s desire to keep her medical information private.

Among the scant details offered by Kensington Palace, a statement included the information that the Princess’s surgery was ‘not cancerous’. Recent months have proved testing for the royal family, with the Princess undergoing major surgery coinciding almost exactly with the King’s cancer diagnosis.

As the Princess of Wales continues her convalescence, her uncle has caused a stir by making his debut on Celebrity Big Brother. Gary Goldsmith, a wealthy businessman, is the younger brother of the Princess’s mother, Carole Middleton. On the show, Goldsmith described his niece as ‘perfect’. However, his praise may do little to allay fears in Kensington Palace of comments made by Gary reflecting poorly on Kate.

The Trooping of the Colour Ceremony, at which Kate will appear in June, celebrates the Sovereign’s official birthday and dates back to the seventeenth century. According to an online booking site for the world-famous pageant, Kate, as Colonel of the Irish Guards, will review soldiers at the event.

The site said as follows: ‘Trooping the Colour reviewed by Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales is identical to Trooping the Colour reviewed by His Majesty The King, with the exception that some additional mounted officers ride when His Majesty The King is present. Taking part will be over 1,400 soldiers of the Household Division and The King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery, including 400 musicians from the Massed Bands, all of whom will parade on Horse Guards for the second of two formal Reviews. Trooping the Colour reviewed by Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales also includes 250 soldiers from the Foot Guards who will line the processional route along The Mall. The soldiers will be inspected by Her Royal Highness The Princess of Wales, Colonel Irish Guards.’

The numerous fans and followers of the Princess will be delighted to look forward to seeing her reappear in public, even in a more ceremonial and perhaps less personal engagement, such as Trooping the Colour.

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