The Princess of Wales chose an ensemble of repeated pieces for today’s visit to Foxcubs Nursery in Luton.
Here is a quick video as she arrived.
‘It’s such a beautiful day!’ The Princess of Wales is in Luton today visiting Foxclubs nursery as part of her interest in children’s ‘early years’ development #royal #princessofwales pic.twitter.com/Emec6EszCE
— Kate Mansey (@KateMansey) January 18, 2023
Meeting Neil Leitch, CEO of the Early Years Alliance and nursery manager Safina Ali, she said: ‘Very nice to meet you, thank you for having me. What a beautiful day.’
However, she also spoke of the ‘cold mornings’ the UK has been having during the chilly spell, and how it seems to have brought people down with nasty colds.
She asked: ‘Is everyone back in? There’s been lots of illness going around, hasn’t there?’
A Kensington Palace news release notes the nursery is rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted (Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills), and has 70 children enrolled between the ages of two and five.
More about the visit from Victoria Ward’s story in The Telegraph.
The mother-of-three toured the Foxcubs Nursery in Luton as part of efforts to promote the importance of early childhood.
It comes ahead of a major announcement from the Princess about a multi-year programme aimed at improving the first five years of a child’s life.
On arrival at the nursery, the Princess was introduced to Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Early Years Alliance. “Thank you for having me, I was just saying it’s such a beautiful day, a lovely cold, crisp morning,” she said.
The Princess spent time speaking with educators.
More from this Evening Standard story.
She quizzed the staff about their experiences and speaking about the importance of nurseries told them: “I think we really saw that highlighted during the pandemic, I think families realised and communities realised, (when) these spaces were closed down for the majority of the time, I think everyone realised how vital they were.
The Princess spoke with parents whose children attend Foxcubs.
And she also spent time with some of the parents pic.twitter.com/HhUQg50naJ
— Rebecca English (@RE_DailyMail) January 18, 2023
The Princess with parents.
Per The Mail’s story, the Princess said, “It is so important having that holistic support for a child where there isn’t this boundary between ‘educational life, which starts here’ and ‘home life, which starts here.’ That there is more of a holistic network surrounding our children.’”
The Princess listening to a parent.
Foxcubs Nursery focuses on learning through play.
There was plenty of playtime today.
More from The Daily Mail’s coverage.
….Kate sat down for an arts and crafts session with around 40 children – and she even played a game of peek-a-boo with some of their bunny masks.
The Princess was keen to sit down at a table with a group of youngsters, examining the masks they were making. ‘Let me see what you have done? What’s your name? Lovely to meet you,’ she said.
She told another youngster as she fixed a lolly stick to the back of their mask so that they could hold it up: ‘That’s very good. Shall I get the sellotape for you?’
The Princess shows a finished mask.
The palace news release also noted the nursery “offers places to families eligible for free childcare and early education, and encourages parents to be involved in the life of the nursery.”
In this photo, you can see the Princess laughing at the antics of a youngster named Ezaan, wearing his construction worker outfit, complete with a hard hat, jackhammer, and toy drill.
In this video from Rebecca English, you can see Ezaan’s determination to be part of a photo or video.
Such funny scenes with one little construction worker determined to get in the shot! 😂 pic.twitter.com/RiqKj6JpHR
— Rebecca English (@RE_DailyMail) January 18, 2023
The Princess was given a bouquet of tissue paper flowers before she left.
She posed for selfies with several parents.
Afterwards, the princess spent time with a small group of parents to talk about the provision offered by Foxcubs Nursery. She praised their children as ‘chatty, really friendly, really engaged in everything they are doing, cooking, arts and crafts.’
“She told another: ‘What a lovely nursery isn’t it? They all seem very happy. They looked after me very well. Are you all here for pick up? Do you have a son or daughter here? Sorry to hold you up.’
Another view as the Princess leaves the nursery.
Now for our look at what Kate Wore for the Foxcubs visit.
She was in her camel coat by Massimo Dutti.
The double-breasted style is made from a wool and cashmere blend. It features a slim silhouette, peak lapels, flap pockets, button cuffs, and a back vent. We first saw the Duchess wearing the coat in January 2020, then at a March 2021 engagement, again during the May 2021 Scotland trip, and most recently, during a visit to Lancashire last January.
Today was our first chance to see Gabriela Hearst separates that were first worn on a very chilly Boston afternoon. The Peppe Turtleneck ($474) and Epper Skirt ($954) are made of a cashmere/silk blend in a color called “spice.”
Her boots look like the brown custom pair by Gianvito Rossi we have seen several times now. The style most like the Princess’s pair is the Glen Boot (£1280).
Kensington Palace put together a quick video of the visit.
Learning through play at Foxcubs Nursery!
Outstanding early years settings like this play a huge role in positively shaping a child’s development. The collaboration between staff and parents is just one of the ways children here are supported in their first five years. pic.twitter.com/DMC3OSZ8UO
— The Prince and Princess of Wales (@KensingtonRoyal) January 18, 2023
I have some sad news to share today. Many of you will remember Zigi Shipper and Manfred Goldberg, Auschwitz survivors the Duke and Duchess met during a 2017 visit to Stutthof Concentration Camp in northern Poland. Mr. Shipper died today on his 93rd birthday.
More from this 2017 Telegraph story. (The second sentence references the 2017 royal visit to the camp.)
Designed for labour, it became a brutal concentration camp with mass hangings and a gas chamber to murder those too ill to work. 28,000 Jews died there.
Mr. Shipper, who survived Auschwitz-Birkenau before being sent to Stutthof, said the visit “means so much” as he paid tribute to the friends, including Mr. Goldberg, who saved his life by supporting him on the final death march when they were both just 15.
The men, who both moved to Britain after being liberated, have been friends ever since, and now travel around the country to teach young people about the consequences of antisemitism. It is the first time either man has returned to the camp.
Here you see the gentlemen with the Duchess of Cornwall last January in the Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace. They were there to view a display entitled ‘Seven Portraits: Surviving the Holocaust,’ commissioned by Prince Charles.
Last year, King Charles commissioned a portrait of Zigi and six fellow survivors that now hangs in Buckingham Palace, and he shared his testimony for an accompanying BBC documentary.
Olivia Marks-Woldman, Chief Executive of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, described Zigi as “a man who lit up a room with his charm and personality.”
She said: “I never had a conversation with him without him being cheeky, without his eyes twinkling at me or without his broad smile lighting his face. All of us at HMDT are deeply saddened to learn of his death today, his 93rd birthday. Zigi survived the horrors of the Lodz ghetto in Poland and several concentration camps including Auschwitz-Birkenau. He then dedicated his life to speaking about his experiences. ‘There is nothing we can do about the past, but we can do a lot about the present and the future,’ he often said.
A social media post from the Prince and Princess of Wales.