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Prince William announces return to royal duties after spending a month with his family in Norfolk

The Princes and Princess of Wales spent the last four weeks at their Anmer Hall home in Sandringham following news of Kate's cancer diagnosis


Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis accompanied by their parents for a settling in afternoon at Lambrook School, near Ascot
Sharnaz Shahid
Deputy Online Editor
16 April 2024
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Prince William has confirmed his return to work after spending a month away from public duties to be with his wife Princess Kate and their three children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis during the Easter period. 

On Tuesday, Kensington Palace announced the Prince of Wales will visit Surrey and West London on Thursday to spotlight the community and environmental impact organisations in the area are having through their work. 

Prince William looking serious© Anthony Devlin
Prince William will resume royal duties this week

The young family spent the Easter holiday together as they adjusted to Princess Kate's recent health diagnosis

In March, in an emotional video message, the Princess of Wales, 42, revealed she is undergoing treatment for cancer, which was discovered in post-operative tests after major abdominal surgery. 

Prince William and Kate - along with their three children - all missed the Easter Sunday service at St George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle following the announcement. 

In the message revealing the diagnosis, the Princess said: "This of course came as a huge shock, and William and I have been doing everything we can to process and manage this privately for the sake of our young family. As you can imagine, this has taken time. 

"It has taken me time to recover from major surgery in order to start my treatment. 

"But, most importantly, it has taken us time to explain everything to George, Charlotte and Louis in a way that is appropriate for them, and to reassure them that I am going to be OK." 

Prince George, Prince William, Princess Charlotte, Prince Louis and Catherine stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace following the Platinum Pageant on June 5, 2022 in London, England© Max Mumby/Indigo
The royal couple have been spending time in Norfolk

Despite keeping a low profile, Prince William and his eldest son Prince George delighted royal watchers when they attended an Aston Villa match together last Thursday. This sighting marked their first public outing since Princess Kate's health announcement. 

George, who sported an Aston Villa scarf, looked happy as the father-and-son duo celebrated the club's 2-1 win against Lille in the first leg of the Europa Conference League quarter-final. 

Timeline of Princess Kate's surgery and health updates

Close-up of Kate Middleton wearing a blazer© Getty
Kate went in for abdominal surgery on 17 January

25 December 2023 – Kate is last seen publicly on Christmas Day

9 January 2024 – Kate celebrates her 42nd birthday, with the King and Queen sharing a behind-the-scenes photo from the coronation to mark the day.

11 January 2024 – William returns to royal duties, meeting rugby heroes Rob Burrow and Kevin Sinfield at Headingley Stadium in Leeds.

17 January 2024 – Kensington Palace announces in a statement that Kate has undergone abdominal surgery at the London Clinic and that William has temporarily stepped back from royal duties to care for Kate and their children.

18 January 2024 – William visits Kate at the London Clinic.

26 January 2024 – King Charles visits Kate in hospital before undergoing treatment for an enlarged prostate.

29 January 2024 – Kate is discharged from hospital and returns home to Windsor to continue her recovery. King Charles also leaves the London Clinic on the same day after his treatment.

7 February 2024 – William resumes royal duties attending London's Air Ambulance Charity gala with Tom Cruise.

10 February 2024 – William and Kate spend February half-term with George, Charlotte and Louis at their Norfolk home, Anmer Hall. Kate's siblings are also pictured on holiday during the school holidays, with James Middleton and Alizee Thevenet flying to the Caribbean with baby Inigo, and Pippa Matthews and her family holidaying on the island of St Barts.

27 February 2024 – Kate said to be "doing well" as William pulls out of King Constantine memorial due to a "personal matter".

29 February 2024 – Kensington Palace addresses social media speculation, reiterating: "We were very clear from the outset that the Princess of Wales was out until after Easter."

10 March 2024 - A photograph of Kate with their three children at home in Windsor is released to mark Mother's Day and to thank the public for their "continued support".

11 March 2024 - Kate publicly apologises for the "confusion" around the photograph as she admitted  she "occasionally experiments with editing," after news agencies pulled the image amid claims it had been digitally altered. The Princess is then seen in a car with William as she's driven to a private appointment in London. 

19 March 2024 - Footage of William and Kate leaving the Windsor Farm Shop is shared by The Sun and TMZ in the first video sighting of the Princess since surgery.

22 March 2024 - Princess Kate confirms that she has been diagnosed with cancer. Kate, 42, is currently in the early stages of preventative chemotherapy, having started treatment in late February. Kensington Palace has not confirmed the type of cancer.

On Thursday, Prince William's first visit will be to Surplus to Supper, a surplus food redistribution charity, where he will see how surplus food from across the local area is delivered, sorted and re-packaged for delivery to small community organisations. 

The Prince will then visit a youth centre in West London which receives regular deliveries of surplus food from Surplus to Supper, and will hear about how this helps the young people it supports. 

Prince William and Kate Middleton at St David's Cathedral© Getty
Prince William and Kate missed the Easter Sunday service this year

In a statement, released by Kensington Palace, a spokesperson said: "Reducing food waste has a considerable number of environmental benefits, including reducing emissions from landfill that contribute to climate change. 

"Protecting the environment for future generations is one of The Prince of Wales's key priorities and in 2020 he launched The Earthshot Prize, a global environmental prize and platform to discover, award, celebrate and scale ground-breaking solutions to repair and regenerate the planet. 

"In 2021, The City of Milan won an Earthshot Prize in the 'Build a Waste-Free World' category for its innovative Food Hubs that collect excess food and distribute it to the communities who need it."

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