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Duchess Kate confidently delivers speech at Bahamas school before taking to the waters to sail – best photos

With reporting by Emily Nash, who is on the ground with the Cambridges

kate middleton speech and sailing
Ainhoa Barcelona
Content Managing Editor
Updated: 25 March 2022
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kate middleton bahamas rain solo© Photo: Getty Images

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are on the last leg of their Caribbean royal tour and have an action-packed day of activities ahead of them in the Bahamas. William and Kate, who arrived in the country on Thursday afternoon, have already had an official meeting with the Prime Minister.

READ: Why Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis have three reasons to celebrate this weekend

But on Friday, the couple had the chance to meet with more locals and bond with schoolchildren as they kicked off a rather rainy day two of their Bahamas trip with a visit to Sybil Strachan Primary School in the capital city, Nassau.

See the best photos below…

WATCH: Prince William and Kate bond with schoolchildren in the Bahamas during royal tour

kate middleton bahamas rain© Photo: Getty Images

The Duchess was all smiles despite the torrential downpour, looking spring-ready in a pastel green Self Portrait dress and Jimmy Choo white leather heels.

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prince william kate middleton school entrance© Photo: Getty Images

William and Kate were met by excited staff and pupils as they dropped into a class at Sybil Strachan Primary School.

The royals were greeted with a 'Guard of Honour' of schoolchildren alongside the Minister of Education, Glenys Hanna-Martin, and the Principal of the school, Mr Ricardo Rolle.

The school, which was closed for nearly two years as a result of COVID-19, has over 700 students stretching from pre-school to Grade 6.

READ: Meet the people in William and Kate's royal entourage

kate middleton school posy© Photo: Getty Images

The Duchess opted for another showstopping look as she stepped out in a pastel green dress by Self Portrait.

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kate middleton school assembly© Photo: Getty Images

William and Kate were in high spirits as they met the children and joined them for an outdoor assembly.

kate middleton school assembly group© Photo: Getty Images

Students from other local schools also gathered for the assembly, which included a school choir performance and a traditional 'Rake n' Shake' Band.

Rake n' Shake music is characterised by the use of a saw tool as the primary instrument and is used to accompany dances such as the Bahamian Quadrille and the heel-toe polka.

kate middleton school face mask© Photo: Getty Images

The Duke and Duchess donned face masks for the assembly.

kate middleton preparing for speech© Photo: Getty Images

The mum-of-three was seen preparing for her speech at the assembly.

kate middleton speech school© Photo: Getty Images

She confidently delivered her words to the hundreds of people gathered at the assembly, speaking to the students as she said: "

The pandemic has taken you away from your classrooms and your friends and learning from home has had its challenges. That is why it is so wonderful that after nearly two years away, you have recently returned to school and been reunited with your teachers and friends again.

"One of the hardest things that so many of us found about the pandemic was being separated from the people we love. We have rediscovered how important our families are, and just how important our friends are.

"I always think it is the simple things in life that bring the most joy: playing together, chatting to your friends at school, eating meals together, listening to each other's stories. These are the things that bring us together and give meaning to our lives."

kate middleton giving speech school

Kate continued: "The connections, the relationships and friendships that you make during school are so special. So please look after them, cherish them and take time for them. And be kind, understanding and loving to yourself and others."

As she thanked the Bahamas for giving them such a warm welcome and saying she wished she could visit all 700 islands during their stay, Kate added: "Our three children, George, Charlotte and Louis, all love being by the sea, so I hope they will be able to experience your clear waters and beautiful beaches before too long.

"However, as much as you have these natural wonders to enjoy, I know that the last few years have not been easy for many of you.

"I also wanted today to say a big thank you to your parents, guardians and teachers. They, I am sure, have found the pandemic hard too, but they are doing one of the most important jobs out there.

"Nurturing your young minds and helping to shape your futures."

kate middleton the queen painting© Photo: Getty Images

The royals were gifted a painting of William's grandmother the Queen, who is celebrating her Platinum Jubilee this year.

kate middleton students classroom© Photo: Getty Images

After the assembly, the royals made their way to a classroom where they met pupils and teachers and heard about their experiences of teaching and learning during COVID-19.

kate middleton tree school© Photo: Getty Images

Before leaving the school, the couple planted a tree in the Peace Garden to commemorate their visit and the Queen's Platinum Jubilee.

They also sealed a time capsule that contained a letter from them both to the students of tomorrow, along with some mementos from their visit.

kate middleton nurses bahamas© Photo: Getty Images

Their next engagement took William and Kate to the Garden of Remembrance, situated just behind the Parliament Building, where they paid tribute to key workers.

The reception, which included nurses, vaccination workers, representatives from the Bahamas Red Cross and the Salvation Army and more, was a chance for the royals to hear about the key workers' experience on the frontline in the Bahamas and also to thank them for keeping their communities safe.

Kate spoke to medical staff from the Princess Margaret Hospital about the relationship between physical and mental fitness. Dr Thomas Smith said: "We are seeing a bigger need for those types of services, especially in a community setting. It's been tough mentally on many people. "Our services really are from cradle to grave so we cater for everyone but it's important to recognise a need for those community relations as well."

Kate agreed, saying: "That's so right. We have to look after our mental fitness as well as the physical side. I think people recognise that more and more. This is the perfect opportunity to have that conversation - and early intervention is really important too."

bahamas pink building© Photo: Getty Images

William and Kate then retraced the Queen and Prince Philip's footsteps as they walked through the Parliament Building – an iconic pink building which the monarch and the Duke of Edinburgh had visited previously – and came out onto Parliament Square.

kate middleton bahamas walkabout© Photo: Getty Images

The royals were greeted with a Junkanoo parade (a Bahamian national festival) happening at the far end of the square and also took part in a walkabout to meet more locals.

In true British fashion, Kate apologised for bringing the damp weather. She chatted to Alexis Tsavoussis, 29, an interior designer from Nassau, who said: "She was lovely, she was asking where we were from and what we did.

"She said she was sorry that it rained on us but was happy that we came out in the rain."

kate middleton bahamas shorts new© Photo: Getty Images

Later in the day, the Duke and Duchess got into the competitive spirit as they took to the sea on Montagu Beach for one of the first sailing regattas in the Bahamas since the start of the pandemic.

There was a change of outfit for the couple as they donned shorts and casual tops.

kate middleton boat bahamas© Photo: Getty Images

William and Kate, both experienced sailors, boarded a small boat to watch the end of a sailing race involving young people from the Royal Nassau Sailing Club.

kate middleton bahamas sailing

Then it was the Duke and Duchess' turn to take to the waves with a bit of healthy competition. William boarded a sloop called the Susan Chase while Kate joined the crew of another sloop, Ants Nest II.

prince william bahamas sailing

The waters were incredibly choppy due to the bad weather, and both vessels looked to be in danger of capsizing after they both suffered from poor starts. One official said: "We wouldn't normally race in weather like this for safety reasons."

kate middleton prince william bahamas boat race

After a very wet race, it was Prince William who triumphed over his wife, with Jimmie Lowe, director of sailing at the Bahamas Sailing Association, saying it was the royal who steered the team to victory after they rounded the first point.

But with Kate having suffered a technical problem with the rudder, it's certain that their friendly rivalry won't have been resolved.

The Duchess showed humility in defeat, as she patted her husband's back when asked who was triumphant.

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