The Duchess of Cambridge, née Kate Middleton, has revealed there is a new addition to the royal family – a hamster called Marvin. The Duchess revealed that she and Prince William had bought the pet for their children Prince George and Princess Charlotte as she opened the new Magic Garden at Hampton Court Palace on Wednesday.
Kate spent time chatting to a group of schoolchildren who were playing in the newly-opened garden, including a nine-year-old girl called Darcey, who explained: "She said she had a hamster, and Charlotte really likes it because the whiskers always tickle her face."
Kate revealed that the family have a new pet – a hamster called Marvin
The 34-year-old also told children about the pets she had as a child; two guinea pigs called Salt and Pepper.
Marvin is the Cambridge family's second pet; William and Kate received their cocker spaniel Lupo as a gift from James Middleton following their wedding in April 2011. Both pets live with the family at their country home Anmer Hall in Norfolk.
Kate made the revelation while chatting to children and well-wishers who had come out to meet her at the play area in London. However not all of the children knew who their special visitor was. As the Duchess toured the outdoor space, a young girl tugged on the sleeve of the chairman of Historic Royal Palaces, Rupert Gavin, pointed at Kate and asked him: "Who's that?"
After Mr Gavin revealed Kate's identity, he recalled: "Then the child said, 'Ooh, are you the princess?'"
Princess Charlotte is said to love the pet hamster
The down to earth Duchess replied: "Just call me Kate."
Kate has a jam-packed schedule ahead of her. The Duchess will carry out her first engagement as patron of the Anna Freud Centre – a charity that supports mental health in children – by attending a lunch reception at the charity's new centre of excellence.
She will also visit the National Portrait Gallery, of which she is patron, to view new photographs of herself. The pictures were taken as part of the collaboration between British Vogue and the National Portrait Gallery and show Kate posing in the Norfolk countryside in casual wear.