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Princess of Wales pictured for the first time since hospitalisation and surgery

The Princess of Wales underwent abdominal surgery

Catherine Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William visit homeless charity 'Centrepoint', London, Britain - 21 Dec 2011© Shutterstock
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad Sanwari - New York
Senior WriterNew York
March 4, 2024
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The Princess of Wales has been pictured for the first time since her abdominal surgery forced her to step away from the public eye earlier this year.

Kate was seen in Windsor in a car while remaining incognito, photographed before 9 AM wearing a black coat and a pair of sunglasses while riding alongside her mother Carole Middleton who was driving, in pictures published by TMZ.

This is Kate's first appearance since her surgery announcement in January, having made her last public appearance in December on Christmas Day.

Princess Kate Middleton leaves hospital to recover at home after abdominal surgery

When the news was first announced by Kensington Palace on 17 January, it was stated that Kate, 42, is "unlikely to return to public duties after Easter."

Last week, Kensington Palace brushed off social media speculation with a spokesperson for Kate, saying: "We were very clear from the outset that the Princess of Wales was out until after Easter and Kensington Palace would only be providing updates when something was significant."

When the announcement was made that her engagements had been postponed, a statement alongside it read: "The Princess of Wales wishes to apologise to all those concerned for the fact that she has to postpone her upcoming engagements. She looks forward to reinstating as many as possible, as soon as possible."

Kate, Pippa and Carole Middleton arriving at The Goring Hotel on the eve of the royal wedding© Getty Images
Kate's first appearance was with her mother Carole Middleton

A lengthy statement explaining her condition was shared at the time, which reads: "The surgery was successful and it is expected that she will remain in hospital for ten to fourteen days, before returning home to continue her recovery. Based on the current medical advice, she is unlikely to return to public duties until after Easter.

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"The Princess of Wales appreciates the interest this statement will generate. She hopes that the public will understand her desire to maintain as much normality for her children as possible; and her wish that her personal medical information remains private.

Kate Middleton wearing burgundy trouser suit© Getty Images
The Princess of Wales' last public appearance was in December

"Kensington Palace will, therefore, only provide updates on Her Royal Highness' progress when there is significant new information to share."

MORE: How royal children George, Charlotte and Louis are spending their 'busy' days while Princess Kate recuperates

It's understood that Kate's condition is non-cancerous, and that Prince William had rescheduled his diary to support his wife and their children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis. 

Prince William, Prince of Wales meets Phoebe Dynevor, Ayo Edebiri, Sophie Wilde and Mia Mckenna-Bruce, winner of the EE Rising Star Award, backstage during the EE BAFTA Film Awards 2024 at The Royal Festival Hall © Getty Images
Prince William has taken over public duties without his wife by his side, including the latest BAFTAs

Princess Kate was discharged from the London Clinic on 29 January after a 13-day stay in hospital. Kensington Palace shared in a statement: "The Princess of Wales has returned home to Windsor to continue her recovery from surgery. She is making good progress.

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"The Prince and Princess wish to say a huge thank you to the entire team at The London Clinic, especially the dedicated nursing staff, for the care they have provided.

Kate Middleton wears velvet gown with Lover's Knot tiara© Getty Images
The Princess is not expected to return to public duties till Easter

"The Wales family continues to be grateful for the well wishes they have received from around the world."


Princess Kate wearing black and white polka dots and a hat

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