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Golden girl Kate back in action for Paralympic opening ceremony

30 AUGUST 2012

Britain's golden girl wowed the crowds at Wednesday's spectacular Paralympics opening ceremony in a dazzling coat dress.

The Duchess of Cambridge looked radiant in the DAY Birger et Mikkelsen outfit which she teamed with her favourite nude LK Bennett heels and an elegant sparkling clutch bag.

Kate previously wore the dress, featuring gold embroidery, for Zara Phillips' wedding to Mike Tindall in 2011.

 

Duchess Cambridge

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Whilst Prince Harry, who had been at Kate's side for the Olympic closing ceremony, was notably absent, the Duke and Duchess were in good spirits as they cheered on Paralympics GB.

The couple were joined by the Queen, Princess Anne and Albert and Charlene of Monaco.

The Queen, who was the first monarch to attend the Paralympic Games, was greeted by a huge round of applause as she took her seat, in somewhat more traditional style than the helicopter stunt seen at the Olympic ceremony.

Upon arrival, the monarch was greeted by Benjamin Britten's arrangement of the national anthem. She was flanked by the Earl and Countess of Wessex, who looked pretty in a blue ensemble that she also wore to Royal Ascot in June.

 

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Ahead of her appearance, the sovereign said that the Games "will excite and inspire people wherever they live" and referred to the British origens of the Paralympics, which began as a competition for war veterans in Stoke Mandeville hospital.

She said: "It is with tremendous pride that the people of London and the United Kingdom welcome the world to the London 2012 Paralympic Games. The Games are returning to the country where they first began, more than 60 years ago.

"The athletes' endeavours and triumphs will excite and inspire people wherever they live. I look forward to memorable Games that leave a lasting legacy for London, the UK and the worldwide Paralympic movement."

Just as she did at the Diamond Jubilee Concert outside Buckingham Palace, the 86-year-old sported some bright red ear plugs.

 

Kate Middleton

 

Also attending were Prime Minister David Cameron, his wife Samantha and London Mayor Boris Johnson who has promised that Games will be a wonderful show and will change the perception of disability forever.

Between them, Kate, William and Harry attended over 20 events at the Olympics and have confirmed they will be at three days of Paralympic sport over the next two weeks.

On Friday, the Duke and Duchess will watch the track cycling and goalball, a team sport for blind athletes using a ball with bells.

Kate will also attend swimming and athletics alone, while William returns to work as an RAF search and rescue pilot.