Like many children and adults around the world, Prince George happily got into the spirit of Pancake Day on Tuesday. His mum the Duchess of Cambridge spoke about how her little boy was spending the morning pancake-making at nursery in Norfolk, while she attended an engagement miles away in London. Kate was opening the new Ronald McDonald house, a 'home away home home' designed for families whose sick children are being treated at the nearby Evelina London Children's Hospital.
Kate met families who are using the 59-bedroom house, and was given a tour of the facilities. In the kitchen, children were busy decorating pancakes. Kate met James Wheeler, four, whose baby brother Lewis was in intensive care having been born six weeks ago at just 23 weeks. "Where's George today?" James asked. Kate, who looked smart in a Rebecca Taylor suit, replied: "George? I should have brought him. He's at his Montessori nursery today making pancakes." James then returned to his colouring-in but warned Kate, "there's a thunderstorm coming!" The Duchess replied: "Yes I know all about those. George likes storms too!"
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Kate spoke at length to James and Lewis' mum Rebecca Bridges-Wheeler, from Epsom. The brave mum explained: "My waters broke so I was an in-patient for five days to try and keep him in for as long as possible but he decided to come out at 23 weeks. I got a bit emotional talking to Kate. It sometimes just rises up. She stopped talking and let me compose myself. You could see the sympathy in her eyes. She was so warm and down-to-earth. She seemed very kind-hearted and easy to talk to. She's also incredibly beautiful as well!"
The Duchess met baby Mia, who is being treated at the Evelina London Children's Hospital
During her visit, Kate toured the facility in south London. She was shown how each family "apartment" has a bedroom, a sitting room and an ensuite bathroom. Kate also spoke to parents Danielle Debono and Dion Mifsud, whose daughter Mia, almost eight months old, has had renal problems since birth. Both her kidneys have been removed and she has dialysis every night.
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Kate unveiled a plaque at the end of her visit
"It was only at Mia's birth that they suddenly realised something was wrong," Danielle told Kate. "We came here when Mia was three days old as it's such a centre of excellence. We have to wait until she's ten kilograms for her to have a transplant and she's having one of Dion's kidneys. She's almost seven kilograms. The youngest they've done is 16 months but we're hoping she can have it done earlier. When she was born her kidneys just didn't stop growing and she suffered from ARPKD. We were told she only had a survival rate of 10 per cent of living past her first month but she's a fighter and she's been amazing." After hearing about Mia, Kate told them: "Having a baby is a life-changing moment but for you having to go through all that as well is extraordinary."