Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Kate Middleton makes surprise visit to London's V&A museum - best photos

Kate became the museum's patron in 2018

kate middleton visits va© Photo: Rex
Danielle Stacey
Online Royal CorrespondentLondon
Updated: May 19, 2021
Share this:
kate middleton views alice exhibition© Photo: PA

The Duchess of Cambridge stepped out to visit the Victoria and Albert Museum in Kensington on Wednesday as the historic building reopened for the first time since December 2020 amid the pandemic.

Kate viewed two new exhibitions, the Raphael Cartoons and Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser, as she toured the gallery, which is close to the Cambridges' London residence, Apartment 1A at Kensington Palace.

Kate became the V&A's first patron in March 2018 and carried out her first official visit in her new role later that year when she visited the museum's photography centre. 

The last time the Duchess visited the V&A was in 2019 to attend the 100 Women in Finance Gala Dinner.

READ: Kate Middleton launched a new fashion trend we didn't see coming

WATCH: Kate Middleton makes surprise visit to London's V&A museum

kate middleton outfit va© Photo: Rex

The Duchess opted to wear a red checked Alessandra Rich dress for her visit, accessorising with a clutch bag and a pair of Jennifer Chamandi heels with buckle detailing. 

kate middleton necklace detail© Photo: Rex

Kate was also sporting her Asprey Woodland Charms on what appeared to be a new gold chain. The acorn, mushroom and oak leaf reflect her family's coat of arms. 

She teamed her necklace with a pair of £17 Twisted Sphere Hoop Earrings from & Other Stories.

kate middleton raphael court© Photo: PA

The Duchess toured the museum's Raphael Court, home to the Raphael Cartoons, which reopened on Wednesday following a nine-month refurbishment to mark the 500th anniversary of the artist's death.

A set of seven full-scale designs for tapestry painted by Raphael, the Cartoons were commissioned in 1515 by Pope Leo X for the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel and are considered to be one of the greatest treasures of the Renaissance. 

kate views alice exhibition va© Photo: PA

Kate then visited the V&A's new 2021 exhibition, Alice: Curiouser and Curiouser, ahead of its opening on Saturday.

It features more than 300 objects spanning film, performance, fashion, art, music and photography related to Alice's Adventures In Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

kate museum visit© Photo: Getty Images

Speaking after the visit, Kate Bailey, senior curator at the V&A, said the Duchess had seemed thrilled by her visit.

"She was so engaged and interested," she said.

"She clearly has a great knowledge of art history and I think it's just so appropriate that she was here, among the first members of the public to come in, as our royal patron.

"As we were leaving she said how important it was to be here in the now and reflected on how the exhibition was multi-sensory, which is probably what people need now after months of lockdown."

HELLO!'s selection is editorial and independently chosen – we only feature items our editors love and approve of. HELLO! may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. To find out more visit our FAQ page.

More Royalty

See more