The Duchess brought back a familiar piece for today’s naming ceremony of the RSS Sir David Attenborough, a new polar research vessel.
The Duke and Duchess were in Birkenhead for the event.
The renowned writer, television presenter, and naturalist at today’s ceremony.
And the new ship.
Today’s function was part of a three-day celebration focused on shipbuilding, science, and engineering in the UK.
The ceremony was at the Cammell Laird shipyard in Birkenhead, Merseyside.
More about the event from this People story:
Before the ceremony, the royal couple toured the ship, which will enable world-leading research to be carried out in Antarctica and the Arctic over the next 25 to 30 years. On board, Kate and William met a team of engineers from Cammell Laird who have been involved in the ship’s build, including young apprentices.
A quick video from Kensington Palace.
Learning about the ship’s navigation systems and ice-breaking capabilities on the bridge.
The ship’s specially strengthened hull will be able to break through ice up to 1m thick. pic.twitter.com/Q6rZaDsM0J
— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) September 26, 2019
There was entertainment for those who came to watch the ceremony, including a “penguin” parade as seen in this video from The Telegraph’s Hannah Furness.
— Hannah Furness (@Hannah_Furness) September 26, 2019
Sir David said it is “the greatest possible honour” to be the ship’s namesake.
Speaking earlier about the ship he said:
I am truly honoured by this naming decision and hope that everyone who suggested a name will feel just as inspired to follow the ship’s progress as it explores our polar regions. I have been privileged to explore the world’s deepest oceans alongside amazing teams of researchers, and with this new polar research ship they will be able to go further and discover more than ever before.
“Britain began exploring the Antarctic over a century ago when it seemed to be an empty wilderness of little importance to the world as a whole. Now we recognise that what happens at the Poles is of the greatest importance to everyone, everywhere.
The new ship is designed to withstand conditions in extreme environments, and the British Antarctic Survey describes it as one of the most advanced in the world.
William delivered remarks. More from Metro’s story:
Speaking before the ceremony, Prince William said: ‘As last week’s climate protests the world over and yesterday’s report on our oceans and frozen regions demonstrated, there has never been a more important moment for this ship to get to work, and there is no person more fitting for this beacon of scientific research to be named after than you, David. ‘You have shown us how awe-inspiring the natural world is, and also how fragile and endangered it is, and you have inspired us all to do as much as we possibly can to protect it.
Kate is the ship’s official sponsor. When the time came, she pushed an oversized button on the podium, and it released a bottle of champagne that smashed into the hull to memorialize the christening.
She said, “It gives me great pleasure to name this ship Sir David Attenborough and may God bless her and all who sail in her.”
There is a bit of a backstory with the ship’s name that some may remember. It dates back to 2016 when the public was asked to name the new ship — more from this Slate story.
Instead, more than 124,000 people voted to name a state-of-the-art research ship Boaty McBoatface, and we all had a hearty laugh at the haplessness of government officials who trusted internet denizens to take anything seriously.
The name garnering the most votes in that 2016 online vote: Boaty McBoatface. The UK’s Department for Business, Innovation, and Skill decided that was not an appropriate name for the new vessel. Instead, that moniker was assigned to the underwater device seen below.
The Duchess with students seeing the autosub.
Kensington Palace shared a video of the Duke and Duchess seeing the vessel with the famous name.
🚢 Today, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are in Birkenhead to tour the UK’s new polar research the RRS Sir David Attenborough.
🎥 TRH learn about the role of the robotic underwater vehicle famously named Boaty McBoatface. pic.twitter.com/fhpAvlo1RU
— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) September 26, 2019
After the formal program was over the guests of honor greeted some of the well-wishers watching the ceremony.
Kate and William met some of the ‘penguins’ seen in the short video above.
Now for what Kate wore at today’s ceremony.
She was in the Alexander McQueen Utility Coat Dress. For a refresher on the piece, we return to our “fun with clothing math” graphic from an earlier post. It shows the 2014 off-the-rack styles with elements that were incorporated into Kate’s garment.
It is the fourth time we have seen the Duchess in the garment. It was previously worn in May of 2014 at the Blenheim War Memorial in New Zealand, and also in June of that year for D-Day 70th anniversary events at Normandy. We next saw it at an RAF Air Cadets anniversary event in February 2016.
The bag measures roughly 7.5″ x 5.5″ and features the classic Asprey clasp, an optional shoulder strap, and multiple interior pockets. “1781” references the year Asprey was founded.
Kate wore her Emmy London ‘Josie’ pumps ($455). The point-toe style has a chunky block heel that measures 3″ in height.
We have one other quick note to share: there will be a royal wedding next year. This morning Buckingham Palace announced that Princess Beatrice is engaged to property developer Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi.
More about Mr. Mozzi from the BBC:
Known as Edo, the 34-year-old millionaire property tycoon is descended from Italian aristocracy, according to AFP news agency.
Edoardo’s father – Alessandro Mapelli Mozzi – is a count and former alpine skier who competed for Great Britain in the 1972 Winter Olympics in Sapporo, Japan.
The Buckingham Palace media advisory.
Several of the photos released today were taken by Princess Eugenie, including these.
Princess Eugenie posted the pictures on Instagram and wrote: “Beabea – wow! I’m so happy for you my dearest big sissy and dear Edo. It’s been a long time coming and you two are meant to be. 📷 by me!!”
The wedding will be next year.
The Royal Family Channel offers 4+ minutes in this video.
A 2-minute time-lapse of the ship being built.
This video gives you a vision of the work the ship will be doing.
- Read more about the Sir David Attenborough ship by clicking here
- Visit the National Environmental Research Council site here; the organization’s Facebook page is here; its Instagram page here and Twitter feed here
- The British Antarctic Survey site is here; the organization’s Facebook page is here; its Twitter feed is here
- The Telegraph’s story is here; The Daily Mail’s coverage is here; Metro’s piece is here; The Mirror’s coverage is here
- Stephanie Petit’s People article is here; Town and Country’s story and photo gallery may be seen here; the Fug Girls post is here