Prince William has paid tribute to PC Keith Palmer, the brave police officer who was tragically killed in the London Westminster attack last week. The Duke of Cambridge laid a wreath with a handwritten message during an engagement at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire on Wednesday. "For PC Keith Palmer, and all those who have served our community so valiantly," the note read. "Your legacy is our way of life. William."
The Duke of Cambridge was visiting the National Memorial Arboretum to officially open the new Remembrance Centre. William unveiled a plaque as he attended in his capacity as Patron of the National Memorial Arboretum Appeal; the appeal has funded the construction of the new £15.7 million Remembrance Centre.
Prince William met a group of schoolchildren at the National Memorial Arboretum
He met staff at the centre, as well as a group of schoolchildren who were trying out the interactive elements of the Landscapes of Life exhibition. The exhibition explores how the practice of remembrance has evolved over time in different cultures – from historic rituals associated with burial mounds, to online tribute pages, and contemporary remembrance services on key dates throughout the year.
Writing in the programme for the event, William said: "The National Memorial Arboretum honours and remembers those men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of this country. This is a place for special memories, many of them sad, but hopefully, many of them happy too. We all have an important job to do in keeping these memories alive for future generations and this new Remembrance Centre will play a significant role in that duty."
William laid the wreath in The Beat, an area dedicated to all British police forces that contains many individual dedications to fallen officers. PC Keith Palmer, a doting husband and father, was killed one week ago while standing guard outside the Houses of Parliament. A crowdfunding page was set up in honour of Keith, 48, and his bereaved family. It has since been closed after more than £700,000 was raised by donations from members of the public.