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May 19, 2003
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Sophie Wessex undertook her first official engagement since announcing her pregnancy, attending the Chelsea Flower Show alongside her mother-in-law, Queen Elizabeth II, on Monday.

The Countess - who, according to husband Prince Edward intends to "take it easy" until the birth of their first child in December - was among a large group of Royal Family members who explored the bloom displays. Also accompanying the Queen were Prince Philip, the Duke of York, Princess Alexandra, Lady Sarah Chatto and Princess Michael of Kent.

Her Majesty made a point of visiting installations sponsored by charities, and took time to chat with an inmate who helped build a garden created by Leyhill open prison.

Meanwhile, former Beatle Ringo Starr and his wife Barbara Bach admired a display inspired by the Fab Four track Octopus' Garden. In the imaginative recreation of a coral reef, a glass fish fountain and brightly coloured flowers are used to create an above-ground seascape.

The frequent showers that fell on the floral extravaganza didn't seem to dampen the spirits of the many celebrities who came to check out the show. Among the personalities seen taking cover from the rain were Princess Michael of Kent, model Jerry Hall, entertainer Cilla Black and actors Alan Rickman and Richard E Grant.

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Photo: ©
The Queen was among a royal entourage which included Sophie Wessex, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Duke of YorkPhoto: © PAy
Photo: ©
Supermodel Jodie Kidd was one of the beauties who brightened the scenePhoto: © PA

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