It was only announced yesterday that The Duchess of Cambridge would be making a surprise visit to scouts in East London this evening. As the members of the 23rd Poplar Beaver Scout Colony arrived for their evening meeting at Old Ford Primary School in Bow, they were looking forward to earning a new badge, but none suspected they would receive it from Princess Kate in person.
Not even all the parents were in the loop, as one tweeted shortly before Kate's arrival:
She went on to remark that her daughter's picture was all over Twitter and it was a good thing they brushed her hair... Apparently, #BetterPrepared truly was the lesson of the night.
|Scouts UK Facebook|
Kate has been very involved with the scouts since becoming a royal. From formal events, such as her trip to Nottingham in 2012 when the ducal couple (attending the Queen) partook in scout activities including games and tent building. (I don't think flirting was an official activity, but I am sure they got brownie points.)
...to more rugged and woodsy activties such as her visit to Cumbria for a leaders' training session while pregnant with George...
...Kate has really been a faithful patron and role model to Britain's scouts. Bear Grylls penned a piece in The Telegraph just this year paying tribute to Kate, and gave a us a little peek into more of the work she has done, including a beach party during her tenure as a volunteer leader in Anglesey!
During the time she lived in north Wales, she would help out a couple of times a term with her local Cub Scouts. She would run games, leader activities and even threw a party on the beach for the young girls and boys in her pack. Despite her travels and commitments, she still adjusted her diary to make time regularly to help young people grow and develop.
Tonight, the Beavers were learning about life with disabilities, and educational activities included icing cakes blindfolded, learning the Scout Promise in sign language, and cutting up chocolate with a boxing glove!
I think we say it every time, but, Kate was just glowing this evening. She couldn't be more natural and charming with children. These kids were all relatively young, and you are assured a variety experiences when working with kids in this age-group. During the guided cake decorating, apparently one of the children just wandered off leaving the good-humored Kate blindfolded. As she arrived, one beaver caught sight of the royal visitor and shouted, "Oh my gosh, it's Princess Kate!" according to Rebecca English. Suffice it to say the children were delighted by the evening and so was the princess.
Kate dressed in what I imagine is par for her course when volunteering with the scouts. An iScout hoodie from Scout Shops, the Beavers' neckerchief, and her Russell & Bromley ChargeIt boots. Kate was wearing black skinnies, and given her frugal attitude toward maternity wear, I rather suspect they are the J. Crew toothpicks from the Nets game in New York.
We should be seeing Kate shortly for the Queen's annual family lunch at Buckingham Palace. Expect a car shot or two, before the royals then decamp to Norfolk for the holiday.