Future Queen Catherine celebrates 40th birthday
UK: Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, turned 40 on Sunday, hitting the milestone as her profile soars alongside her husband, Prince William, the future king.
Since marrying into Britain’s most famous family in 2011, the former Kate Middleton has emerged to become one of the most popular royals — and a figure central to its future.
Her image as a safe pair of hands, at a tricky time for the monarchy, was boosted at a televised Christmas carol concert in December.
She delighted fans with her musical prowess by accompanying the British singer-songwriter Tom Walker on piano for his poignant song “For Those Who Can’t Be Here”.
Kate rehearsed in secret for the surprise performance at Westminster Abbey, which was dedicated to everyone who served their communities during the coronavirus pandemic.
“She was absolutely fabulous — she smashed it. What a talented, kind, warm-hearted, lovely person,” Walker said, describing her as “very chilled, very nice” to everyone.
Both Kate and William, who turns 40 in June, have been much more visible public figures since the start of the global health crisis.
The couple have held video meetings with frontline healthcare workers battling the outbreak, which has claimed some 150,000 lives in Britain since early 2020.
They have also given insights into life with their three children in lockdown — albeit in a sprawling country pile on a royal estate.
As restrictions lifted, they have been seen at official engagements, from the glitzy world premiere of the new James Bond film to meeting world leaders at the G7 and UN climate change conferences.
Kate has also pushed her own initiatives such as championing early years education and, with William, promoting mental health and protecting the environment.
The couple’s former private secretary Jamie Lowther-Pinkerton told The Times newspaper that part of Kate’s appeal was her polite, down-to-earth and unflustered nature.
“She takes time to talk to people,” he said, likening her to Queen Elizabeth II’s own mother, who was a symbol of British resilience during World War II.
“She is tough. She has got that Queen Mother feel in her, so that when things need doing, she is there to do them.”
A lot of the focus on Kate since she and William started dating as students in Scotland was on her middle-class background. – NDTV