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Kate and William send a message of stability in what might be their best Instagram post

Caitlin McBride


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A card Prince George made for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

A card Prince George made for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

Handout picture released by Kensington Palace of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge talking with staff during a visit to the London Ambulance Service 111 control room in Croydon

Handout picture released by Kensington Palace of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge talking with staff during a visit to the London Ambulance Service 111 control room in Croydon

Britain's Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, talk with Chief Executive of the London Ambulance Service, Garrett Emmerson during a visit to the London Ambulance Service 111 control room in Croydon, Britain March 19, 2020

Britain's Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, talk with Chief Executive of the London Ambulance Service, Garrett Emmerson during a visit to the London Ambulance Service 111 control room in Croydon, Britain March 19, 2020

Britain's Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, talk with staff during a visit to the London Ambulance Service 111 control room

Britain's Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, talk with staff during a visit to the London Ambulance Service 111 control room

Kate Middleton with Princess Charlotte and Prince William with Prince George in an image released for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

Kate Middleton with Princess Charlotte and Prince William with Prince George in an image released for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

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It was as sure a sign as any that even the royals recognise these are unprecedented times.

On Sunday, Kensington Palace released three images on its Instagram to honour the occasion, leading with a fun-loving picture of Kate Middleton and Prince William engaging in piggyback rides with their two eldest children Princess Charlotte and Prince George, alongside a picture from 1989 with William and Harry and their late mother Princess Diana. Finally, was a picture of Carole Middleton holding a picture of her baby daughter Kate in 1982.

If a picture speaks a thousand words, then the collection of these could fill the pages of a bset-selling book. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have upped their duties of late thanks to a combination of Meghan and Harry’s departure and palace scandals, but most notably their youth and good health during the COVID-19 crisis.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince William are holding up court at Windsor Castle, and Prince Charles (71) and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall (72) are in Scotland, all of whom are self-isolating due to the risk the coronavirus presents to the elderly and those with underlying health conditions.

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Kate Middleton with Princess Charlotte and Prince William with Prince George in an image released for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

Kate Middleton with Princess Charlotte and Prince William with Prince George in an image released for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

Kate Middleton with Princess Charlotte and Prince William with Prince George in an image released for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

It means that Kate and William have been at least temporarily given the reins to convey the message of stability often perpetuated by the queen herself. On Friday, they made a surprise visit to the London Ambulance Service to highlight the work of its employees during the pandemic - and while their metrics of social distancing are up for debate - it was a much-needed display of confidence in the frontline workers facing this challenge every day.

With the UK’s late response to coronavirus, the royals - the purpose of whom is often debated - legitimised their own function by serving as a source of information and reassurance to the millions who follow them.

It’s clear they are taking this newfound leadership seriously, but you can't acknowledge the popularity of today’s royals like William and Kate, and Meghan and Harry without mentioning the unwavering influence of Princess Diana.

During her lifetime, she changed the royals strategic approach to charity, a legacy imprinted on her sons. And it is when the public is reminded of her, though she is rarely far from any royalist's mind, that they reach maximum impact.

Mother’s Day can be a tricky time for many - for those dealing with estrangement, and others dealing with grief - and the choice to include both Diana and Harry, during a time abound with rumours of a rift between the brothers, was a wise move on behalf of Kensington Palace's social media manager.

The decision to include Carole Middleton and baby Kate also established the duchess at the forefront of the future of the royal family.

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The inclusion of a birthday card her six-year-old son George made for his mother added another touch of humanity; a further signalling of a softer generation to their predecessors.

Similarly, over on Sussex Royal, Meghan and Harry opted for their usual text model, with just a few simple words and a presumed acknowledgement of the maternal role Harry’s grandmother filled after his mother’s death: “Mummy. Mum. Mom. Mama. Granny. Nan.”

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A card Prince George made for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

A card Prince George made for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

A card Prince George made for Mother's Day. Picture: Kensington Palace/Instagram

“No matter what you call your mum, this Mother’s Day in the UK, we honour the mums all over the world who do so much every single day, and now more than ever. Thank you,” the post read.

Meghan, who is estranged from everyone in her family except for her mother Doria Ragland, is also celebrating her second Mother’s Day with 10-month-old son Archie.

Escapism is a necessary practice during these unprecedented times, and with just a few images on Instagram, the palace established its place amidst the chaos as exactly that.


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